Using Videos In A Presentation – 3 Things

Trade show and convention season is upon us. I am very excited. I love going to events, seeing old friends and making new ones. I also love getting in front of a group and conveying ideas that matter to people who want to make a difference.

The Back Story On Video

Two years ago I attend an event, IFO’s Fusion, which is an event that I attend every year. It’s probably the premiere event for accounts payable professionals. I was at a turning point with my presenting. Up to that point I had been getting excellent reviews and a lot of “pats” on the back for a job well done. However, I was not satisfied with my successes. I didn’t believe that I was lacking, I just  wanted to get better. At Fusion that year I made a pledge to myself that I would attend as many presentation as I could to learn the good, bad and ugly.

The Good, Bad and Ugly

Believe me there was plenty of all of it. IFO has a policy to allow anyone attending the conference to do a breakout session (with approval). This attracts a lot of accounts payable and payment service providers that don’t really like doing presentations and it shows (I learned a lot of what not to do). However, on the good side, IFO also pays a lot to attack some excellent key-note speakers. It was in the key notes that I learned a very important lesson about presenting. Each key-note (there were four) used video.


It really struck me that all of the “big time” presenters were using video, so I decided to do a little research. I found out that when you use a video in your presentation you are able to do three things.

    1. Introduce an expert. You can get a clip of an expert in your industry and have them talk during your presentation without paying the person. Wow! What a great idea. Be warned, however, you can’t just sit back and roll film of someone else talking. Meaning, you can’t over use this aspect of video, but an expert can really help you make a point.
    2. Liven up your time. Videos can come with upbeat music and fast-moving images. It’s great to get your audiences heat rate up a little. A video can also be use to tug at people’s heart-strings to have more of an emotional connection to you subject matter (I haven’t been able to introduce this to AP Automation yet).
    3. It will break up your time (This one is my favorite). I did a lot of research on this one, and found that it is extremely powerful. The best information I found was from a podcast on the film and TV industry and their techniques on keeping people’s attention. Their research showed that people from a 1/2 hour sit-com to three-hour movie needed breaks. On TV those breaks came in the form of commercials. In shows like Game of Thrones on HBO (love that show) the brakes came in the form of switching from one group of characters and situations to another group of characters and situations. You are able to use the same techniques with video in your presentation. Using a video will let your audience hear and see something different and when the attention comes back to you they are much more attentive because they have gotten a little break.

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