Emerging tech is set to transform your next pitch meeting, but innovation comes from within

2020 is not that far away and society is having the collective realisation that we are now in the future, says Emma Bannister. Here’s how emerging technologies are set to transform your next pitch meeting.

Emma Bannister 150 BWThe world doesn’t look exactly how we imagined it would. Kanye West might run for president, we don’t have apes for butlers and Elon is our only chance at making the DeLorean dream come true. However, what we lack in flying cars, we have made up for in the new information age. With so much information at our fingertips thanks to the democratising of information (a revolutionary ramification of the internet), the most pressing issue that marketers need to address is how to get the right information, to the right people, in the right way.

Presentations are quickly evolving to solve this problem. With advances in visual technology, shorter attention spans of audiences and a desperate need for key messages to cut through the noise, presentations are quickly becoming an invaluable tool for marketers.

Shorter audience attention spans and information fatigue mean that people have less and less time for less-than-engaging presentations. If presentations don’t communicate anything of value in succinct ways that are targeted specifically to your audience, your efforts are wasted. It doesn’t matter if you use PowerPoint or virtual reality (VR), if the way marketers use presentations doesn’t mature to value audience-centred storytelling you will fail to effectively communicate information which could pose an organisational, brand or even a financial risk. 

Understanding your audience is becoming easier and increasingly granular. The increased access to big data and the increasing shift into deep data means that your ability to understand your audience is increasing in detail. Access to data means you get to understand your audience better and before you tell your story, you need to understand theirs.

Otherwise people in 2025 marketing meetings will be sitting in a VR presentation meeting bored out of their minds because they will be literally surrounded by walls of text that don’t mean anything to them. A newer technology, but a situation most of us are all too familiar with.  

Understanding your audience means not just understanding their story but also being empathetic to the way you tell that story. With the advancing technologies in the presentation space we can tell our stories in exciting, new and engaging ways. Below are some of the new mediums organisations will be communicating audience centric story in 2020 and beyond. 

  • Virtual reality (VR) – 2018 saw over 100 million people use VR and that number is set to drastically increase over the coming years. Initially used for gaming, this technology is quickly being adapted for the presentation and training spaces. Virtual reality means that storytelling will move from two-dimensional to three-dimensional as communication moves from telling your story to inviting your audience physically into your story.   
  • Augmented reality (AR) – will bring a tangibility to stories that might seem hard to visualise. For example, product design presentations using AR will allow an audience to engage with the product as if it was in their own hand. As AR headsets become more cost effective for organisations, we’ll see them being used in presentations more frequently. 
  • 3D modelling – while being used for years in industry, this presentation form is becoming increasingly popular. PowerPoint recently added a 3D functionality to its platform, expanding the accessibility of this form of storytelling. Controller technologies such as Leap Motion are making the ability to control these models with hands and fingers possible.   

Related: Bitesize takeaways from Adobe Summit 2019 – the future of AR, VR and MR in marketing »

Magic Leap glasses MR

Technology is also making the everyday presentations more interactive and accessible. Questionnaire software makes audience engagement easier and allows for real-time feedback. Portable projectors mean that presentations are more agile and can be presented in a variety of new environments. 

We may not have flying cars yet, but there is a good chance Elon will use augmented reality to present the first draft to investors. There are so many exciting advances in presentation forms marketing teams can use to tell their stories with as we ramp up to 2020. But without the shift in mindset towards a more audience-centred presentation, these fancy new toys will be just as inefficient the ones we currently have. The real innovation and exciting possibilities for marketers relies in the ways we tell our stories – in a way that considers our audience’s story.

Emma Bannister is founder and CEO of Presentation Studio

 

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