3 Unique Ways to Stay Connected to Your Audience

Connecting with my audience in Tokyo, Japan

Speaking with students at the Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan

Write this down somewhere:

If they’re predicting, you’re connecting.”

Getting my audience to predict what happened next in my story is one of my favorite ways to stay connected (or even deepen the connection) with them. Take a look at this very quick story and see if you can figure out where I get my audience to predict.

I got my audience to predict when I asked, “Where was he?” They said, “On the bunkbed.” There are many opportunities in your stories to do this. It’s a great way to get your audience involved, keep them tracking with you, and even uncover some humor. If they’re predicting, you’re connecting.

USE THEIR NAMES

Another way to stay connected with your audience is to use their names. I do this for 2 reasons. 1. It helps remind me that I’m speaking to individuals and not to a group. 2. Sometimes it can temporarily make them the stars of the speech, which is always my objective. Take a look at this quick story that I deliver virtually and listen for the names.

Using their names keeps me connected to the individuals which make up the group. Oftentimes when you connect with one, you connect with them all.

USE THE SPACES FACES BETWEEN THE LINES

A third way to stay connected with your audience is to realize that your story is not just about the words. It’s also about what happens in-between the lines. Sometimes the looks before and after the lines are what tell the real story. The good news is you shouldn’t have to try to add things between the lines. Instead, it happens naturally when you relive your story and you go back there emotionally. Remember what my good friend, Darren LaCroix, says, “Reactions tell the story.” 

Final Thoughts

Getting your audience to predict, using their names, and using the spaces between the lines are ways you can not only stay connected with your audience, you can deepen that connection.

 

Craig Valentine

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