Preparing for presentations is tough, tedious, and time-consuming, and the cardinal rule once you're in the room is to engage those in your audience—not put them to sleep.

I'm not asking you to be the next Steve Jobs or Tony Robbins, but a better version of yourself, when presenting your hard work, thoughts, and ideas.

As a senior account manager and adjunct instructor in digital marketing, I have seen and participated in my fair share of presentations. It takes practice and experience to know your audience and learn to quickly pivot if things aren't going well during a presentation.

So let's get down to the seven phases of making an effective presentation.

1. Know your audience

The most important thing to do before getting started on preparing your presentation is to research your audience. Spend some time learning what they expect to gain from your presentation: The more you can connect with them, the more engaged they will be.

Your presentation should cater to the background and needs of your audience. For example, if I'm presenting to a group of accountants, I would make sure to include hard numbers and objective data. On the other hand, if my audience is a team of creatives, I would make sure to include more visual and interactive content.

2. Agenda

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image of Yad Bhatti

Yad Bhatti is a senior account manager at Elite SEM and an NYU adjunct instructor, teaching digital marketing strategy, planning, and execution.

LinkedIn: Yad Bhatti