Raise your hand if you’ve ever experienced a boring presentation. Are you raising it?
If not, that’s surprising. For years, companies and speakers have struggled to find innovative ways to refashion the standard presentation model. Unfortunately, this task is increasingly difficult because people’s attention spans shrink every day.
But FXP Touch, a new database-driven, Web-based application from Freeman Company, offers a unique way to deliver presentations.
Ken Holsinger, vice president of digital solutions for Freeman, remembered watching a presenter instruct audience members to hold up their phones and then put them away. The result was responses ranging from addictive withdrawal to seething hatred, he says. This inspired a new idea, though: Rather than rely on the latest gizmos, why not harness the tremendous power of cellphones to make better presentations? Holsinger began working on a brand-new concept to shatter the stagnant presentation format.
When deciding which functions FXP Touch would incorporate, he attended many Twitter conferences to observe natural phone behavior during presentations. One thing that concerned him was the use of hashtags during question-answer sessions. Even though this method used smart devices in a relevant way, the process still posed problems—namely, there was no way to moderate, monitor and properly store questions. He also observed that clunky tools were used for polls and that people pulled out their cellphones to take pictures of slides—often yielding unclear images and posing a distraction to others. Furthermore, none of these processes were seamless.
Developing a New Tool
To address these issues, Holsinger’s team worked on several projects, including FXP Touch, which automatically adds hashtags. Aware that Tweets with images receive about 700 percent more engagement, Holsinger also equipped FXP Touch with the ability to automatically attach slides to Tweets. Since event tags can potentially evolve into trending tags within a given area, he figured that combining the slide image with the event tag would result in all-around good publicity.
After Holsinger integrated these tools, many event hashtags became national trends. To supplement slide viewing, pinches and zooms were also added. “It was a pretty simple, yet essential feature,” Holsinger says.
Attendees can access FXP Touch by entering a login code on the website before a session. FXP Touch does not require a download. Instead, it easily launches on other mobile apps. Presenters also have intuitive, useful functions on the back end of the system, as well.
Another significant observation that Holsinger had made was that when people enjoy a presentation, they diligently take notes on an app. Since they were simultaneously researching the presenter on LinkedIn and Google, however, many were inconveniently jumping from app to app.
To resolve this issue, annotating capabilities were integrated into FXP Touch. Annotations can be made directly onto the slides and stored for later access. Since the presentation slides are automatically emailed to attendees at the end of presentations, there’s no concern about losing information in the process.
“When audiences are not preoccupied with note taking, there is about a 40 percent retention increase,” Holsinger says.
Prior to a session, the presenter can push messaging to every attendee’s device to provide supplementary materials. Audiences can also communicate within their groups using FXP Touch’s messaging platform, which is integrated into the program.
During the session, questions can be relayed to the presenter, but are kept anonymous. Without compelling audience members to get up and speak into a microphone, time is saved, participation is encouraged and accuracy is ensured. In addition, questions can be archived for later.
Holsinger witnessed a presentation that dealt with the controversial topic of diversity and urban planning. Rather than asking the audience a question, panels were put up anonymously. While not all 700 submitted questions were answered, anyone interested in continuing the conversation was invited to meet on the exhibit floor. Similarly, FXP Touch enables polls to be taken anonymously and results appear to the audience instantaneously.
“[Getting] instant voting results and having the ability to change them at any given moment creates a buzz in the room,” Holsinger says. “We are no longer just talking at them [the audience]. We are incorporating them. It’s important for sponsors, too. Imagine all of the implications: For instance, you can ask during a presentation what the hottest trends for 2018 are and get immediate responses instead of sending out email surveys.”
FXP Touch is also able to measure audience engagement by tracking extraneous app use during the presentation. Don’t worry though—privacy is still ensured, since the specific distractions are never revealed.
A Social Deejay on the Fly
Imagine all of the intelligence accessible through using this device. The data can be crucial to designing and bettering strategies, as well.
“Think of it as a social deejay that’s interacting with the crowd on the fly,” Holsinger says. “Much like with music and mood, we do that with social media and bridge the gap between presenter and attendees.”
FXP Touch improves the presentation process by offering interactive tools, accurate insight, seamless posting capacities and extensive storage. It presents a huge array of potential applications for meeting and event planners, along with anyone else tasked with delivering a presentation.
Source: Smart Meetings