Do you struggle to engage and influence your audience even though you are an authority on your topic?
If so, let us show you how you can
Become an engaging and
by designing compelling presentation content that engages and influences your audience.
In all other areas of your career you shine…
but your presentations let you down.
It’s not that you hate presenting or get desperately nervous. And it’s not as though you’re totally new to presenting either.
You’re aware that your natural delivery style is not particularly engaging. Enthusiasm, energy, humor, entertaining stories – none of these come naturally to you. You feel like a fake if you have to turn your presentation into a performance.
However, you’re aware that your presentations aren’t having the impact that you know they’re capable of achieving.
As a minimum this is frustrating but at times it can have you feeling uncomfortable and inadequate.
And the bar gets higher every day.
You have colleagues that who are confident and articulate – after their presentations, people talk about how great they were. And the TED phenomenon has pushed the standards of presenting, to which you’re compared, to a much higher level.
Although you have a successful career, you suspect your presenting might be holding you back.
Because you’re not making the most of these critical opportunities to showcase your expertise and knowledge.
People make judgments very quickly and it’s those who appear confident and articulate that get noticed and remembered. And in a competitive market being remembered – for the right reasons – it more important than ever.
Hello. We’re Olivia Mitchell and Tony Burns.
We’ve been running presentation skills courses and delivering one-on-one coaching for nearly 20 years.
And in that time we’ve discovered a powerful thing…
Most people don’t realise what’s sabotaging them.
So they look for solutions in all the wrong places.
It’s our belief, and experience, that if a person can express themselves in a one-on-one conversation, then, with the right presentation content, they can be confident, articulate, engaging and persuasive when they’re speaking to a group.
We used to think that engagement was all about delivery
When we started training presenters, we too thought that engaging presentations were the result of engaging presenters. And so we did our best to help our clients make the most of their eye-contact, gestures, movement, voice volume, pitch and rate. It was all about delivery – we took the content for granted.
Although we were wrong, we feel we could be excused!
The training we’d received focused far more on delivery than content design. Toastmaster training focused on eye-contact, body language and vocal-variety. And communication trainers claimed that an experiment carried out by Albert Mehrabian proved that words carried only 7% of the message – that 93% of a message was conveyed by non-verbal cues.
But some of our clients resisted.
When we encouraged them to move more and make eye-contact they claimed that we were asking them to be “unnatural.” The introverts hated having to be more animated claiming that we were asking them to “perform” when they just wanted to be themselves. We could relate – Olivia is an introvert.
And then one evening we went to one of the most engaging and compelling presentations we’d seen.
But the presenter was barely moving – his voice, while not monotonous, had little variation. Even his eye-contact was not great – he seemed to just look into the middle of the group. But his material was amazing – and so was his grasp of his material. He had statistics and stories and example and quotes. Some of the stories were funny – some were sad. The presentation moved logically from one point to another and lead us to a logical conclusion. It was all built around a simple, single message.
We were astonished. This presentation broke all the “how to present” rules. And yet it was engaging and persuasive – at times entertaining and never boring.
We had to deconstruct what had just happened.
The presenter had taken us on a ‘journey.’ It moved logically from point to point and each point was backed up by a variety of evidence. The material was the source of engagement – the presenter was just the messenger. They didn’t have to do much work – the presentation content was doing the heavy lifting!
It was then that we came up with a new mantra. Content is King!
Other than speeches at weddings or other family occasions, or entertaining after-dinner speaking, audiences attend presentations for the content. That’s where the value is. They want useable take-aways that they can implement straightaway.
So we started to look at how most of our clients were planning the content of their presentations. And the results were significant.
Almost everyone was using PowerPoint to plan their presentations.
The problems this created were numerous and included planning their presentations in the wrong order, doing a data-dump on the audience, trying to cover too much and having insufficient evidence to back up their points. As a result, their audiences were confused, overloaded and bored. Completely disengaged.
A presenter designing a presentation with PowerPoint is a bit like an architect designing a building with a hammer!
Sure, PowerPoint can help you record your thoughts but can it ensure that those thoughts are going to be of interest to your audience? Will it ensure that provide a range of evidence to back up your points and that the evidence you choose is appropriate to the style of point that you are making? Will it find the right words to express your core message in a clear and memorable way?
PowerPoint is a Delivery tool – not a Design tool. And that explains why so many presenters – even the extroverts – are sabotaged when they design their presentations using PowerPoint. And if you don’t have an “engaging personality?” Then it’s really tough to break through and create engagement.
It’s nerve-wracking to have to speak to a disengaged audience!
Many of our clients thought that their audiences were disengaged because of their lack-lustre delivery. We started to notice that the lack-lustre delivery was often caused by the disengagement of the audience!
They told us that when they spoke to a disengaged audience it would provoke feelings of nervousness and anxiety which lead to them speaking too fast, waffling, having mind blanks, losing their place and skipping important material. This was often accompanied by unpleasant physical symptoms such as blushing, shaking, feeling nauseous, sweating, dry mouth and a pounding heart.
Not ideal conditions in which to be presenting at one’s best!
“But I know my content backwards – I’m an expert!”
One day we were running a course for education experts. One of the participants told us of her problems getting audiences to understand and implement the advice she had for them. She told us how she did her best to deliver in an engaging way.
We suggested that the problem might not be her delivery – the problem might be her content.
“But I know my content backwards”, she protested. “I’m an expert!” And indeed she was. She had a PhD in the subject, had several papers published in academic journals and had written books on her subject. Some had been translated into other languages.
And it was then that we stumbled upon a vital distinction…
Expert Knowledge does NOT equal Engaging Content
Experts can be seduced into thinking that expressing what they know is sufficient to be engaging. They often find it difficult to convert their Knowledge into effective presentation Content.
Expert communicators use Content Design strategies that ensure that the material they deliver, connects and engages with their audience.
Most of us have been taught how to create written material for an audience of readers. We have NOT been taught how to create spoken material for an audience of listeners.
And the skills are very different because the situation is very different.
And if you’ve ever had a presenter read to you, you know what we mean!
In presentations sentences should be shorter. A change of focus needs to be introduced. Repetition is an acceptable – and powerful – tool of emphasis.
A reader can pause and think – they can go back and find something they read earlier. They’re guided by headings, titles, paragraphs and other formatting. There’s less pressure on the person creating material that will be read than there is on the person creating material that will be heard.
Your audience does not have that luxury. It’s up to the presenter to put all that Content Management into the design of the presentation. And many people get it wrong or don’t even do it!
First, because they don’t know that there are different skills and techniques involved and second, they don’t know what those skills and techniques are!
When we saw that most presenters didn’t have an effective presentation planning system, we decided to create one. It’s called…
The SpeakerMap™ and the other tools that complement it will enable you to design and deliver a presentation in a completely different way.
Quick features preview:
Multiple levels – use it for a simple team briefing or a conference presentation
Multiple uses – inform, sell, persuade
Adapts to different timings – from 5 to 50 minutes – it’s modular format allows you remove material if you need to deliver a shorter presentation with little impact on your presentation effectiveness
Quick – once you get familiar with the system you’ll literally be able to design a 10 minute presentation of the back of an envelope in less than two minutes (*assuming you’re a subject matter expert).
It’s a lot easier to change your Content
than it is to change your Personality
And that’s the purpose of the SpeakerMap™. You use it to select, prioritise, arrange, illustrate and maximize your message. It enables you to take your audience on a journey that’s both logical and interesting. It will contain both intellectual and emotional content. Your presentation is “templated” from beginning to end.
But your audience won’t notice the template – they’ll simply notice how clear you were – how interesting and relevant your material was – how you made the complex simple – the dull, interesting – and made them sit forward in their seats and want to hear what you had to say.
And then they’ll tell you what a brilliant speaker you are.
Because, like most people, they think that a great presentation is about style – not substance. (But you won’t tell them that!)
Until recently, learning how to use the SpeakerMap™ has only been available to people who come to our live events.
NAIL THAT PRESENTATION is an action-oriented presentation training program
that will guide you step-by-step to create an engaging presentation.
How does it work?
Nail that Presentation is based around a presentation project that you have coming up. The program leads you step-by-step through the SpeakerMap™ process of designing the Content of that presentation. (We call Nail that Presentation a program – not a course – because it’s so practical and based on you completing multiple exercises leading towards the successful completion of the design of your presentation.
As you complete each step you are encouraged to submit your work to a Focus Group of friends or colleagues and to our private Nail that Presentation Facebook Group where you get expert feedback from us.
At the end of the program you will have your presentation (with or without slides) designed, rehearsed and ready to deliver to your audience.
You’ll be feeling completely different to how you normally feel before a presentation – enthusiastic, excited and confident are the words typically used by participants.
How is it delivered?
The program consists of nine modules, each containing one to ten lessons. The lessons are in video, audio and text format so you can access them in whatever form suits you best. There’s an action step at the end of most lessons and you’ll be encouraged to take that step before you move on to the next. The lessons are deliberately short – from two to eight minutes long – so you absorb an idea and put it into practice straightaway.
At the beginning of the program we show you a short demonstration presentation that’s been designed using the SpeakerMap™. Throughout the program we refer back to this demo so that you can easily understand the process or principle we are teaching.
The Tools you’ll be learning to use:
In addition to the SpeakerMap™ you’ll learn how to use the following tools or methodologies to help you create your presentation:
1. Destination Statement Builder – creates a clear focus for your presentation.
2. GPS Destination Statement clarifier – shortens and sharpens your Destination Statement.
3. Evidence Plan – creates engagement through variety.
4. Assertion-Evidence combos – keeps your audience absorbed.
5. Major and minor 3Q Sequences – allows you to manage your content with ease.
6. Zone of Engagement Finder – ensures your audience will find your presentation relevant.
7. Signposting Sentences – will have you totally on top of your material.
8. Evidence-driven Slide Format design – create slides that compliment, not compete, with your material.
9. Effective Speaking Note-Writing formula – never lose your place.
10. 4-Question Audience Analysis tool – ensure a solid connection with your audience.
11. The CRC Opening formula – starts your presentation crisply and has you looking in complete control.
Here’s the full Program
Click to view each module – all modules are available to you as soon as you start the program. We recommend that you tackle them in this order.
Module 1: Set your Destination
Module 2: Prove Your Prototype
Module 3: Engage with Evidence
Module 4: Expand your Content
Module 5: Set the Scene
Module 6: Follow the flow
Module 7: Stay on Track
Module 8: Visualize with Slides
Module 9: Ready Set Go
What can you expect as a result of completing this program?
Your audiences will engage, listen and As you’re designing your presentation you’ll realise how effective it’s going to be and how interested and absorbed your audience will be. You’ll move from nervousness to excitement and will start to look forward to delivering your presentation and seeing the result it will have for your audience. As you deliver your presentation you’ll notice a new feeling of control that you have as you take your audience on the journey of your presentation. You’ll see their interest and understanding which will boost your confidence to deliver with natural enthusiasm.
The points you make, the words you choose, the material you select, the order in which you present it – all the techniques that you’ll learn in this program will lead you towards creating a presentation that will have your audience’s attention from the beginning through to the end. If there’s question time, expect lots of interesting questions and interaction from the audience. Afterwards, you’ll have people coming up to you thanking you and congratulating you for such a interesting and useful presentation.
Your audiences will engage, listen and act on your words. You’ll persuade and influence them in ways that we’re simply not happening before you learned the ideas and techniques in this program. Don’t be surprised when someone comes up to you after your presentation and declares that they intend to take action as a result of your presentation.
Why Nail that Presentation will work for you
It’s a logical, step-by-step system
You’ll be applying the system to the presentation that you’ve got coming up. After that, you can apply it to any presentation.
We’ve sliced up the task!
The program’s easy bite-sized steps will keep you moving forwards and developing unstoppable momentum.
You can reach out for help
Anytime you’re feeling stuck or confused, reach out for help in our private online forum. We’ll get you unstuck and moving again.
You’ll be ready when you want to be
Use our scheduling system to keep your planning on track and be ready in plenty of time with no last minute rush.
You can learn in away that suits you
Each step starts with a short video explaining what you’ll be doing. If you prefer listening to audio or reading a pdf we have that available for you.
You can ask for feedback
Post to the private online forum to get feedback and fine-tuning to make your content and slides the best they can be.
What makes Nail that Presentation different from other online presentation training?
1. This is a practical program to help you with a particular presentation you have coming up and it guides you step-by-step through the design of that particular presentation.
This is not a generic course which teaches you how to create any old presentation. This is a practical program which guides you step-by-step in the creation of your presentation.
If you don’t have a presentation coming up, this program may not be for you (see our Frequently Asked Questions). If you do have a presentation coming up, this program will get you into action and help you to create something really engaging.
Once you learn the tools you’ll be able to use them on all the subsequent presentations you give.
Don’t like presenting and doubt that you’ll be giving many more? That may well change after you give your next presentation!
2. You’ll get help from us any time you need it.
This is not an online course where you are left to figure out how to make use of the techniques that the videos show you. On starting the program, you’ll be able to join our private Facebook Group and have immediate access to us and other program participants.
We will be totally committed to your success in the same way we are to the participants who attend our live programs.
3. It has a money-back guarantee.
You may be concerned that this program won’t really help you. We understand. People coming to our live events have the same concern. And within minutes of the program starting, they realise that they’ve made the right decision to trust us with their valuable time and money.
If you complete the Nail that Presentation program and feel that it did not made a significant difference to your presentation, ask for your money back. We give you 60 days from the time of your presentation to do that!
Eva-Maria explains why you will want to get expert guidance from Tony and Olivia
What other people say about us
In the decade I’ve known Tony and Olivia, I have watched them become New Zealand’s most passionate and knowledgeable presentation skills trainers. These are dedicated professionals, at the height of their skills. I cannot recommend them highly enough.Dr Rich Allen
In August I was asked by our CEO to give a presentation to the Board of Trustees. I prepared myself with your SpeakerMap™. I got fantastic feedback and heard that the Board were very impressed with me. This presentation has been the highlight of my year!Clarissa Wallace
Out of the 117 presenters that spoke at the TechEd conference my final ranking was #9. I absolutely would not have achieved that had it not been for the invaluable speaker training you provided!Daniel Bowbyes
Frequently asked Questions
Will this work for academic presentations?
I see that you're from New Zealand. Will the content of this program work in other countries?
I have to give a speech at a wedding. Will this work for me?
My main problem is nervousness. Will this program help?
Your methodology looks quite complex. Is it going to take me longer to plan my presentation than usual?
It would be more accurate to say that our system breaks down the complexity into understandable bite-sized pieces. To begin with, as you learn to use the tools we teach you, you will go slower than normal. However the end product WILL be so much better that it will be worth it. You will design subsequent presentations much more quickly and may end up designing faster – and better – than you do now.
I'm not sure if this presentation is worth spending the money.
There's a lot of free stuff on the internet. Why would I pay to do your program?
I'd like my employer to pay. Can you invoice them?
What are the terms of your 60 Day Money Back Guarantee?
If you implement our principles and systems you will find that they make a significant difference to the success of your presentation.
But we get that you may feel unsure. We stand so solidly behind the effectiveness of Nail that Presentation that we will make it totally risk-free for you. If your presentation is not significantly improved by implementing our principles and systems, ask for your money back within 60 days of your presentation and we will refund you.
And here are the conditions of the guarantee – this is necessary so that we don’t have an open-ended liability to refund your money.
- When you enrol in the program we will ask you to complete a questionnaire to tell us more about the presentation that you’re preparing for, including the date of that presentation. The guarantee applies to that specific presentation only and so you will need to ask for a refund within 60 days of the date of that presentation. If you do not complete the questionnaire and tell us the date of your presentation the guarantee does not apply.
- To qualify for the guarantee you must show us that you have implemented the principles and systems of the program.
I tend to over-prepare. Will your system help?
BONUS #1: What to ask the Meeting Organiser?
For your presentation to be successful, you need to know essential details about the audience, venue, and technical set-up. We have all the questions you need to ask in this Bonus.
BONUS #2: Captivating Presentation Title Templates
Another critical element of presentation success is having people attend. If you need to attract an audience, for example, you’re presenting a conference breakout session having a captivating presentation title is essential. This list of 8 different title templates will allow you to do that.
BONUS #3: Royalty-free Stock Photos
This is a carefully curated list of stock photo websites which offer royalty-free photos. Many of them are not well-known so you’ll get access to free photos that nobody has seen before and make your presentation stand-out.
BONUS #4: The “Be Prepared” Equipment Checklist
Yes, Tony used to be a Scout! This list has every piece of equipment you might need to ensure that you’ve got what it takes to survive technical setbacks.
It sounds great but what if the program doesn’t help me?
60 DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE
If you implement our principles and systems you will find that they make a significant difference to the success of your presentation.
We stand so solidly behind the effectiveness of Nail that Presentation that we will make it totally risk-free for you.
If your presentation is not significantly improved by implementing our principles and systems, ask for your money back within 60 days of your presentation and we will refund you.
For more information see Frequently Asked Questions.
Enrol for Nail that Presentation
- One-month expert suggestions and feedback on your work from Tony and Olivia
- Instant access to all program content so that you can go as fast as you like
- Access to the Nail that Presentation discussion group
- Choose video, audio or pdf depending on your preference
- Get bonus content "Captivating Title templates", "The 'Be Prepared' Equipment Checklist" and more