167: MMM - On 4 Questions to Ask Yourself for Audience Connection


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Download this 4-question cheat sheet to remind you of the key questions you need to ask yourself as you prepare your content for a particular audience.


Today I want to talk with you about audience.

How do we prepare our content for a  particular audience?

It means that you are preparing a talk for a particular audience… and there are a few questions that I like to ask myself about my audience so make sure that it resonates..

That is the goal…

When our content resonates - it connects. And that’s the whole point!

Resonance and connection is what we’re going for.

Our audience at its very core needs to believe that we know and understand what they’re going through, what they’re struggling with, why there there…

And then we need to have a clear understanding about how we in parciutlar can ease their way a little bit.

What is the thing that you can offer to them that attends to one of the things they’re struggling with.

We’r looking for the venn diagram of audience and speaker s- where they and you you connect.

It has nothing to do with being similar -

you don NOT have to be the same person or have the same experience in ANY WAY -

In fact, if you're not it can be really compelling

But your job as a speaker is to find the bridge to your audience.


So there are some questions I like to think about when I’m thinking about my audience….

1 - What do I want my audience to KNOW?

  • In my TEDx talk I wanted them to know that an un-speaker could be any of us… all we need to be is authentic, connected, and courageous. And that the other specifications that are often used to categorize ‘speaker’ aren’t necessary -and can be hurtful, even, because it keeps leaders from really owning their place at the table.

So for you… what is the core message?… what do you want them to KNOW?

2 - The 2nd question is what you you want your audience to BELIEVE?

  • I want my TEDx audience to believe that THEY can be an UN-SPEAKER. And that we need more un-speakers in this world!

This is a value-statement… emotive - the thing they need to under believe in order to do this next question…

3 - Which is: How do you want them to BEHAVE when you’re done?

  • This could be really specific and action-rented, like… I want them to go sign up for my course.
  • But for me, it was I want the audience to UN-SPEAK. To risk, to connect - to share their authentic selves. To do what I’m talking about.
  • And knowing this… helps me make this compelling, and actionable.
  • TEDtalks aren’t the best at compelling and actionable. Gotta say.
  • And of course there are talks out there that push the action.. the “call to action” part of action can be sales-y and gross. I’m not a fan of “selling from the stage” - but let’s also not delude ourselves that ALL TALKS are asking for some kind of ACTION… a change in behavior … if you’re just talking about a change in thinking, that ultimately leads to a change in behavior… or what are we doing here?
  • Fundraising asks are great, because the behavior - the call to action - is so clear and everyone knows it.

Which leads me to the last one - #4 - How do you want them to feel?

This is my favorite question to ask, because it creates an emotive filter to use when thinking about your content development. I was at a client’s the other day, talking about doing a big sales pitch. These aren’t typically my favorite talks to work on, until I ask this question… how do you want them to feel at the end of this? Often it’s “excited” - jazzed about the new thing… curious….

But the other day it was “valued” - we want them to feel valued” We want them to know they may not be our biggest retailer, but they are important to us.

That changed everything for me in terms of the approach in the content.

Imagine if they had said - “We want them curious about what’s coming”… I would approach it with a little bit of tease… anticipation… maybe even some coy-ish charm… share the interesting details that pull people in….

But valued? They want to feel valued. So my job as coach is to find ways to share sincere appreciation, to make room int he content to talk about the growth of their partnership, etc… And the connection and delivery will be paramount.

To me, this last question can change everything.

The first three - good, important to know. Check off those boxes.

But really sink into question #4.

How do you want them to feel?

And how does that impact what you do, the content you develop, your approach in delivery, the space you create?…

There are more audience questions I like to ask - there are a zillion that are worth asking - but these are the biggies.

I would love to hear from you -what do YOU do to prep for your particular audience? What questions do you ask? And how does that impact what you do?

Head on over to thismovedme.com to download a little AUDIENCE-PREP freebie so you can customize your talk with your audience filter on. :)




Download your tip sheet:


Download this 4-question cheat sheet to remind you of the key questions you need to ask yourself as you prepare your content for a particular audience.