PSU Insight

Preparation is the Key

PPQ — Learning More About Your Audience

Depending on your particular presentation, you might want to explore your audience's needs and wants in more detail —

  • Please list the names and titles of your TOP people who will be at my program.

  • Is the audience members’ attendance at your meeting mandatory? Is their attendance at my program mandatory?

  • Are there any problems, competition, resentment or peer pressure that I should know about?

The first question is really good and serves two purposes. The obvious reason for asking this is to discover if any top honchos are going to be in your audience, so you can tailor your material to them.

But the hidden (and more important) reason for asking this is to subtly suggest to the meeting planner that the top honchos should be invited to attend your presentation. (It may not occur to anyone unless you “suggest” it.)

The next two questions help to determine the mood of your audience. It can take more time to “warm up” a hostile audience — especially at the beginning of your program — to get them to where they’re receptive to your message. It’s also important that you know about any taboo subjects so that you can address them appropriately — or avoid them altogether.