How to Capture Interest in 90 Seconds, Part III

Make ‘Em Say a Mental Yes

“When are you going to understand that if it doesn’t pertain to me, I’m not interested?” – Candace Bergen as TV character Murphy Brown

Want another way to have your audience at hello?

Ask yourself, “What keeps them up at night? What are they worried about? What is frustrating them?” Begin your meeting or workshop with rhetorial questions around those issues.

For example, if you’re preparing a presentation on the topic of money, you could begin with:

Do you ever wonder:

“What am I going to live on when I retire?”
“Who’s going to take care of me when I grow old?”
“Is social security going to be gone by the time I’m 65?”
“What if a health challenge drains my savings?”
“What if my company goes bankrupt and takes my 401K with it?”

If you said yes to any of the above questions, you’re in the right place because that’s what we’ll be talking about today.

See how starting off with the questions that are on your audience’s mind wins buy-in?

People will immediately bond with you because they’re thinking, “That’s exactly what I’ve been thinking about!” They’ ll be motivated to pay attention because you’ve articulated their concerns and they’ll be eager for your answers.

Next time you want people to give you their valuable time and attention, include content in your first 90 seconds that makes ’em chuckle, makes ’em arch their eyebrows and makes ’em say a mental yes.

They’ll be on the edge of their seats, ready and willing to hear what’s next, because you’ve shaken them out of their preoccuaption and made their eyes and mind POP! open.

  1. There is a similar mental obstacles in creating web sites as well. We explain to our clients that you have about 3 seconds to prove to the visitor they have landed on the right page to answer their question or solve their problem. If you don’t in three seconds, they hit the back button and move on to the next site in their search results.

  2. Sam, thanks for the three posts. I just highlighted them over at Great job. Hope you make it back to NSA-OK soon!

    Rhett Laubach

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