The one thing you should do if you want your presentations to be more memorable

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Business owners and entrepreneurs should give visual clues and highlight important points if they want their presentations to be twice as memorable, according to a New York Times bestselling author.

In an article for Forbes, Leadership HQ founder Mark Murphy says there is no point in giving a speech or presentation if no one remembers it.

The author and management consultant says the way to make presentations or speeches more memorable is to leverage what neuroscientists call ‘spatial cues’.

Read more: Five tips to help you become a great public speaker

“For starters, think carefully about the single most important point on every slide in your presentation,” Murphy writes.

“I can virtually guarantee that every slide has one point that is more valuable than the others. Then, once you’ve identified those critical points, you need to use spatial cueing to highlight those key points for your audience.”

Murphy suggests using a red circle to highlight key words or by using a different coloured font in order to draw attention to a particular sentence.

“Without the spatial cues, the audience doesn’t know what part of the slide to focus on and they waste neurological energy trying to remember unimportant information,” he says.

“Intuitively, it just makes sense that a slide with six bullet points is much more difficult to remember than a slide with one really important point circled in red… it can significantly increase attention and retention.”

Murphy says this is backed up by research from data scientists in France.

He recommends speakers use visual cues so that what they are saying stands out from the crowd.

“Your presentation will be a lot more pleasant and engaging for your audience,” he says.

“And generally speaking, when your audience is happy, good things happen.”

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Broede Carmody is a former senior reporter at SmartCompany. Previously, he was a co-editor of RMIT University's student magazine Catalyst.

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