The secret behind Steve Jobs Presentation skills

October 5, 2010

I’m a great fan of Steve Jobs and Apple; stylish products and the most loyal customer base in the world. And Steve’s presentation skills to inform, educate and entertain are legendary. So I spent some time investigating how he does it.

Here are my top ten tips for creating a presentation the Steve Jobs way…..

1. Before you turn on your computer, map out how you want to communicate your message. Think in terms of making a Blockbuster film trailer, with all the ingredients you would expect such as plot, heroes, heroines and the odd villain or two.
2. Work out how to choreograph your delivery to keep interest levels high by including demonstrations, video clips, other presenters, emotionally powerful images etc.
3. Focus upon what your product or service will do for others, the benefits, rather than features. Create a compelling and passionate need for what it is you offer. Get theatrical here. Your ‘Bad guy’ can either be a competitor or a serious problem that needs fixing. Then along comes the ‘Hero’, your product or service, which saves the day.
4. Create a ‘Killer’ sound bite to form the focus. Everything else you say should then support this. Steve Jobs launched MacBook Air with the phrase, “The world’s thinnest notebook”, instantly creating a memorable difference and highlighting the massive convenience benefit over the competition.
5. Make large numbers meaningful by putting them into context using a reference that people understand.
6. Use the rule of three. With a verbal delivery this is crucially important as this is about the maximum people’s short term memory can retain. Send them elsewhere for the detailed story; website, handout pack etc.
7. Create memorable and visual slides by using images, rather than words, to communicate your message and KIS, keep it simple.
8. Use simple words. Avoid jargon and ‘Industry’ speak.
9. Introduce a Eureka moment, one that people will remember.
10. Practice, practice, practice!

If you want to know more, Carmine Gallo’s book, ‘The presentation secrets of Steve Jobs: How to be insanely great in front of any audience, makes a great read.

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