August 17, 2009

Make your audience feel special



We saw a lesser-known local band perform recently at a community event. Bub was intrigued, and stopped by their table to buy their self-produced CD (with a hand-drawn cover) for $5.

As we were standing at the table buying the CD, the band's singer came over and introduced himself. He thanked us for buying his CD, and engaged us in conversation. We learned a little more about the band and had a nice chat.

The members of the band are high school and college students; they've only been together for a little over a year. Yet they've already learned one important thing about performing: You have to make the audience feel special.

Without an audience, a performer doesn't exist. The audience deserves our appreciation, our acknowledgement, our thanks.

Spend some time before your presentation talking with audience members. Instead of running off to your next appointment afterward, stick around and build some relationships.

Bub is going to be more inclined to seek out this band's performances, now that he has a personal connection, and he's already planning on buying their new CD when it comes out.

No matter how small a group, no matter how small a purchase, the connection you make with your audience members is infinitely valuable and critical to your growth and success as a speaker. Make sure they know it.

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6 comments. Please add yours! :

Jeanna said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. That's a good reminder for me. I remember another band that came to a Girl's Camp. They were an awesome band, but I think are only known of in Utah. They were so cute to the audience. Basically all the girls wanted their signatures after the show, even though they knew all the boys in the band are married. It's definitely seems to be true that if you feel a connection with others you are more interested in supporting them. Thanks again for sharing. :)

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Thanks for your comment, Jeanna! We know this instinctively as an audience, but when we're the ones on stage, sometimes we forget!

Jon Thomas said...

That "special" feeling audience members get when you make yourself available and spend time with them is not short-lived either. They'll often become evangelists, spreading the word about your music, your product, or whatever you're presenting.

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Good point, Jon! It goes on and on!

Training Connection said...

Use names! Whether small group or large crowd (ask prior to taking the question: Please introduce yourself) and repeat new names as soon as you hear them. You can use this to interrupt, to celebrate and to reference that person. Someone who knows my name has a lot of power!

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Great tip, TC! I love referencing the names of my audience members, and who doesn't love hearing their own name?

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