better speaking skills » Can You Make a Serious Audience Laugh?

Can You Make a Serious Audience Laugh?

by | May 19, 2019 | 0 comments

Have you ever gotten a laugh—on purpose—during a serious presentation? Well, keep that trend alive! Audiences (actually everybody) love to laugh. When your audience is laughing, then you know they’re listening (hopefully to you). But how can you pull this off and why should you bother?

• WHY: When you get your audience laughing, you’re making a connection with them. They’ll keep listening—just in case you make them laugh again. And your message is easier to remember, when you tie it to a little humor.

• WHEN: So you’ve decided to add humor to your presentation. Congratulations! Now, ask yourself two questions. #1. Is the funny story or comment relevant to my topic and my audience? (If the answer is “yes”, add it. If the answer is “no”, leave it out.) #2. Will it help my audience remember one of my points? Don’t add pointless humor, just to get laughs. The funny comment should make your message unforgettable.

• HOW: When you add humor to a serious presentation, try to be an A.S.S. Be animated, surprise your listeners and stop talking. ANIMATED – Use facial expressions, gestures and vocal variety to drive home your humor. SURPRISING – Don’t tell your audience something funny is coming. Slip in the humor, and catch them off guard. Never ask, “Do you want to hear something funny?” STOP – When you hear the laughs, stop talking. Stand there and enjoy the ride. Don’t be rude and talk over the laughter!

For more ways to get laughs during a serious business presentation, like my Facebook page (

Rosalyn Porter

Rosalyn Porter

Rosalyn Gist Porter, MBA, founded Better Speaking Skills after more than 20 years in corporate communications as a manager, writer, and editor, for major corporations such as Lockheed Martin. Today, she helps coaches, business owners, executives, salespeople, sales teams, and other professionals increase sales, confidence, and influence with powerful public speaking and presentation skills! Rosalyn is Certified World Class Speaking Coach and a proud member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando.

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