How to Get People to Show Up at Your Presentations

Recently, when speaking with a franchised restaurant client, we were discussing one of the greatest chicken/egg issues in the business: traffic. It's a pretty simple equation, really, but talk it long enough and it starts to look like the snake eating its tail. More so than average guest check, traffic drives restaurant sales. And as goes sales goes marketing budget. Marketing budget begets brand. And brand ultimately leads to more traffic. So in restaurants, traffic is king. Because anyone who shows up has at least the intention to eat, so that's more than half the battle.

I couldn't help but notice how similar this is to presentations.

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Better Storytelling Through Chemistry

Moving an audience isn't easy. If it was, everyone would do it. But even though it can be difficult, that doesn't mean it has to be complicated. In fact, many of the most effective storytelling techniques are actually simple, neurological hacks.

Let's take a look at three primary chemical agents of motivation and how storytellers provoke them.

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The Transaction is the Reward, not the Goal

I recently had the privilege to address FreemanXP’s creative staff in a Hangout. Creative Director John Jaeger and I mused on the topic of selling ideas, and how important this skill is for creative staff at marketing agencies.


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The Ketchup Popsicle and the Woman in White Gloves

Imagine me, at 17 years old, pulling in to the parking lot at work: a local Tex-Mex restaurant. I leap out of my Chevy Blazer (complete with subwoofer, of course), frantically tying my apron around my waist as I dash into the daily team meeting. (The meeting started at 10:00 am. I slept 'til 9:53.) In these meetings, sales techniques and results were common discussions, as it's when we learned of the restaurant's "daily specials," a.k.a. fish that needed to be cooked before we had to waste it.


"Man, you guys shoulda seen Nathan yesterday. He coulda sold a ketchup popsicle to a woman in white gloves," boasts our shift manager.

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