Jun 11, 2018

IPL or the Indian Presentation League

We are in the age of convenience and speed. We want everything right now. Swiggy brings you food and BigBasket brings you groceries immediately. Cricket also reflects this trend. Indians in the 1980s and the 1990s were very comfortable watching a seven-hour one day cricket match. Not today. We live in the T-20 generation. The match duration has shrunk from seven hours to 3 hours!

It reflects how our attention spans have shrunk too. Getting attention is a huge challenge for any marketer. It is the same for you when you present.

I was attending a demo day event in Mumbai in 2015. A famous Indian start-up incubator and accelerator had mentored and trained a group of start-ups (called a cohort). At the end of the six-week acceleration programme these start-ups were being showcased to a group of investors. The hall was full of investors and one-by-one start-up founders were climbing the stage, making a 5-minute presentation (known as a demo day pitch), and stepping down.

If you were one of those start-up founders, would you say you had the complete attention of your audience for those five minutes? After all you would only speak for 5 minutes.

Do you pay complete attention to all the presentations you attend in your office or workplace? Is it compulsory to pay complete attention as an audience? The investors in that hall on that winter morning were people like you and me. They had their workplace worries and they too were glued to their smartphones. Many investors were checking their emails and WhatsApp even while a start-up founder was presenting. Who loses if they do not pay attention?

Attention has to be earned and cannot be assumed. Make your content crisp, exciting and plan the flow properly. Remember we live in the T-20 era. Do not prepare for a five-day test match or a seven-hour one-day match.