In the world of public speaking and presentation, not all information is created equal. Some information already makes an impact no matter how you deliver them, while others are just simply boring.
Presenting boring information can be done by making the senses of your audience work. Play with colors, designs, and tones in your presentation while still being informative. Use audiovisual materials like PowerPoint slides, videos, and audio clips.
Don’t worry because, in this article, I’ll teach you different ways to make boring information fun aside from what I’ve mentioned above. If you want your audience to have fun while they learn, check out this whole article.
How to present boring information in a fun way?
Incorporating creativity and the use of imagination in the delivery of boring information can make it more interesting. Reinforce your presentation of the boring information by provoking the senses of the listener, especially their sight and hearing, to elicit favorable reactions.
Here are some useful tips to get you started:
- Know who is at the receiving end of the boring information. Identifying who they are will make you better gauge the best techniques to deliver the info.
- Present yourself as someone credible, but at the same time, someone fun to listen to. Make relevant jokes, but make sure they aren’t insensitive.
- Create a fun atmosphere by delivering your central points using audiovisual materials. This will facilitate variations in your presentation.
- Be as creative as you can be. Let your audience use their imagination if appropriate. Please their senses through descriptions and examples. Involve them in the discussion.
- Identify the setting and the mode of speech delivery, for instance, in-person or online. These require different sets of preparation and consideration which we will be discussing later on.
Presenting boring information in a personally delivered speech
When you present boring information in front of an audience, you will receive feedback right away in the form of cues. You'll see your audience yawn or divert their attention to their phones.
If you are already sensing boredom, it is up to you to immediately control the flow of your speech. Taking them to a detour off your boring points can help ease their feeling of being uninterested. To be specific:
- Show them actual examples to demonstrate your points. You can synthesize the central points and put them into a pamphlet as a guide throughout your presentation. Art pieces, if relevant, can help you as well.
- Invite experts who can help you further explain the boring information. This will make your audience feel that what you are presenting really matters.
- Insert humor by throwing jokes and funny stories from time to time.
- Make use of audiovisual materials. Feed the eyes and ears of your audience so they won’t feel that the information you’re sharing is actually boring.
- Leave a mic near the audience to encourage participation.
Presenting boring information online
It is actually advantageous to deliver information online because you have better access to useful materials on the web. For instance, in just a few clicks, you can show your audience a funny YouTube video related to the boring information you are sharing.
For your audience, staring at the screens of their laptops is already boring enough. There are also multiple distractions in their environment. Thus, it is crystal clear that you have to be more creative in presenting boring information.
Using available audiovisual materials online will further encourage your audience to get themselves involved in the discussion, despite the distance between you.
PowerPoint slides, pictures, videos, and audio clips, to name a few, are deemed effective to entice them to pay attention to you. Here are some examples:
- If you are going to present about protecting the environment to high school students, get their attention by adding some nature-related elements in your slides, like trees and mountains. You can also play relevant documentaries about biodiversity and the ecosystem to prove your point.
- If your presentation is about the importance of modern technology, and senior citizens are your audience, you would not want to bombard them with millennial jargon. Try to compare the things they had before and the developments today by showing images. Then explain carefully why this progress is important.
- If you are to talk to the avid consumers of Western entertainment about the rise of KPop’s popularity, you can let them listen to the famous KPop songs today performed by BTS, BLACKPINK, and EXO, among others, available on YouTube.
How to make the delivery of boring information fun through a PowerPoint presentation?
PowerPoint presentation is, perhaps, one of the most widely used audiovisual materials in assisting the delivery of important information.
However, not everybody knows how to optimally use it as they encounter usual problems. To share boring information through PowerPoint, take note of these things:
- Use fun colors and designs. Aesthetic slides, although secondary to the speech’s message, please the eyes of your audience. Just make sure that the colors are harmoniously compatible with each other and that the design is related to the topic.
- Add some transitions and animations. These minor elements, when done successfully, would show your preparedness and commitment to your speech. Just do not overwhelm your audience with too many of these. Two to three kinds of transitions or animations are enough.
- Do not overcrowd your slides with too many characters. Keep in mind the 7-7-7 rule which signifies having seven words per line, seven lines per slide, and seven slides only per presentation. Following these will not overcrowd your slides, and you’ll be able to highlight your key points.
- Incorporate interactive polls. This requires partnering your slides with an external application that facilitates exchanges between you and the audience. To illustrate, you can post a question on the app, the audience will answer through their devices, and the responses will be shown on your slides in real-time.
- Encapsulate information into diagrams, tables, and charts. Having too many characters in your slides can be too much for your audience’s sight. Limit the use of these, and only include what is essential.
Indications that the audience is bored with the presentation of information
While your goal is to ensure that the presentation is not boring at all, you have no control over the feedback and reactions of the audience.
Here's how you can sense that the audience is bored with your presentation:
- Emotionless or “poker” face: If they are already emotionless about what you are talking about, they are most likely losing interest in your presentation.
- Scrolling through their mobile devices: They want something more appealing than what you are speaking about, so they resort to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to ease their boredom. You, in turn, just fade into the background.
- Sleepy eyes or blank-space stare: If there are beds in front of your audience, they would probably lie down and let themselves fall asleep. You’ll feel this when their eyes are already piercing through you.
- No response: The audience’s response is a great indication that they are attentively listening to you. If they are eerily silent, they’re probably planning how to get out of the room without offending you.
- Chatting with their seatmates: If you hear murmuring sounds while you are delivering a presentation, the audience is probably talking about something else they think is worth their time. This serves as a diversion from the boredom they feel.
Mistakes to avoid when delivering boring information
Transforming boring information into a fun presentation lies in the hands of the speaker. Among others, the most common mistakes that you should avoid are speaking too fast, having low energy and a monotonous tone, and going on without a structure or a guide.
Speaking too fast
When the information is already boring and complex, talking too fast would only make your audience confused. They won’t be able to comprehend what you are saying. Thus, you need to pace yourself. Explain every point slowly so they can digest it.
Being monotonous and having low energy
You mostly rely on your voice in explaining the central points of your speech. Of course, keeping your energy low and your tone monotonous will make your boring information more boring.
Make sure that the tone of your voice varies depending on what you are saying. Also, don’t act like you’re bored with your own presentation. Be energetic.
Not structuring the information well
Presenting information without proper structure is disastrous. Your mind will be all over the place, especially when there are a lot of eyes on you.
Before you deliver something boring, make sure that you have outlined what you will say. This is when a PowerPoint presentation can come in handy as it will keep you aligned with your message.
Audiovisual materials that can make your presentation interesting
Our generation today is very fortunate to have access to audiovisual materials to aid us in our presentations.
The role of technology has been utterly vital in the development of how we both present and understand our topics of interest. Here are some of those that you should consider using:
- PowerPoint presentations: This will assist you in highlighting the most important ideas of your speech. At the same time, this will also serve as a guide to your audience on the flow of your presentation.
- Video clips (e.g., news reports, documentaries, and vlogs): Your audience might want a little break from hearing your voice from time to time. Showing them video clips will add variation to your presentation.
- Audio clips (e.g., recordings, music, and podcast episodes): Just like video clips, you can also use music, podcasts, or recordings. Most people enjoy listening to these materials, so you’ll get a better response.
- Pamphlets and other tangible materials: These will activate your audience’s sense of touch, reinforcing that of sight and hearing. These can better explain what you are trying to talk about.
How do you make a presentation interesting without PowerPoint?
Expand your imagination and creativity! You can tell interesting stories to demonstrate your message, or you might want to create visual aids.
Also, you can maximize the use of GIFs, compilations of images and screenshots, and short videos or reels readily available online.
How do you make a boring presentation interactive?
Let the audience involve themselves in the discussion by asking questions, expressing their opinions, or defending their contestations, if any. Also, make use of phone applications, games, etc.
Presenting boring information in a fun way is a skill that speakers must learn. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to master this.
Making the senses of the audience work through vivid descriptions and examples is one way. Meanwhile, using audio-visual techniques is also very effective.
Following the advice I shared in this guide, I hope you now know what to do when asked to spice up boring information. Remember that there is no boring information if the speaker is great!
For more resources to develop your public speaking skills while you are in the comforts of your own home, please check the articles Online Resources for Public Speaking and Where Can I Learn Public Speaking. If you would like to leverage the best presentation software for your next big speaking engagement please read the article 'Best Presentation Technology tools'.