My Favorites

People often ask me, "Who are your favorite presenters or what are your favorite videos?"

Here is a collection of some of my favorites. Each one has something fun, engaging, unique, or different about they way they communicate. Also, they are great examples of how to captivate any audience.

One of my most favorite clients is Back in 2011, they were a small team trying to do something new and exciting. Sam, Jessica, and Elliot worked really hard to prepare for their time on the TechCrunch stage where they won 1st Place. On August 21, 2018, they announced their $300 million Series D raise led by SoftBank after raising $88 million along the way. Congratulations team GetAround! Here is a look-back at their winning pitch delivered at TC in 2011 in New York City. NOTE: Please skip to the 1 minute mark to start watching.

When selecting the words we use when presenting, it is really important to think very hard about the words you choose. If you are not getting the results you want from your audiences, perhaps you need to listen very carefully to what you saying and adjust the words to be more impactful, emotional, or persuasive.The words you speak when presenting need to be chosen carefully to achieve the outcomes you want. This brief video illustrates this point vividly.

When you watch this young girl talk, you will immediately hear and see why using variety in your voice is so important to your message being heard by your audiences. Not only does she use variations in her pacing, she is amazing at pausing at the right locations to create impact. See for yourself.You will also see how facial expressions are so important to making your messgae have even more impact. I know you will agree that if more presenters used some of her approach, their audiences would be more engaged.

One of the most difficult pitches to deliver often occurs when you have a business based on data. How do you make data look exciting and sexy like so many other types of businesses? Miro, the CEO of 3Ten8 shows you how to do this beautifully. This is one of the most compelling data presentations I have ever seen.

Dandapani reveals how writing your thoughts gets you one step closer to your subconscious. There are two reasons I have this video here. One, he is an example of an excellent speaker. He is authentic, honest, and continually talks from the heart. The second reason is if you have significant speaking anxiety, perhaps using his writing method will help you harness your anxiety more easily. See what you think and check out his website for more tools like this one.

The Cisco LaunchPad Accelerator in Bangalore, India is asking their presenters to begin with an explainer video this time around. It should certainly help the audience understand more about what the company is doing before the presenter actually speaks. Here is an example of a very well done explainer video.

I was made aware of a presentation at E3 in 2015 for a game named Unravel and I want to pass it on as an excellent example of a story demo reel. The speaker uses story to share his journey to the game and then a demo reel with an introduction to Yarny and its story. It's unforgettable and really seems to capture the emotions of the game designer, especially when you hear what inspired him to build the game. It is my understanding that this video was delivered to an audience over 1 year before the game became available to the public. The most interesting thing about this is the effect it had on people who saw this presentation. Apparently, many people were talking about this "story" after seeing this video. This is a clear example of how a powerful story will compel people to never forget you and to tell others about you and what you are doing. Be sure the setting on Quality of the video is 720p and go full screen! Check it out. You'll be glad you did.

The weakest part of most presentations I see is the opening. People fail to realize how important a strong opening can be to captivating any audience anywhere on the globe. Here is an opening that instantly set the tone for the entire pitch and it worked beautifully. If you have the opportunity to play a video before you even speak, you just might be able to get the audience in the palm of your hand like Justin did here.

Sometimes, slide decks can kill a presentation, especially when engineers and developers are trying to pitch their company to investors. Recently, Collider, a Red Hat sponsored internal startup was struggling with using slides; the team felt their slides were distracting, creating a real problem for the audience. After watching one practice run, I agreed. My advice was to throw the slides away and just speak with tremendous enthusiasm. This video is a clear example of how a winning team can pitch with only one slide. No clicker. No worry. Just deliver.

This TED talk by Shane Koyczan has recently become one of my favorites for several reasons. Firstly, he is a poet and delivered a TED talk as a spoken-word poem! Secondly, he matched a portion of the visuals behind him to a perfectly timed live voice over, which I loved. And thirdly, he shows his authentic self through his facial expressions and his voice. Watch and listen to learn some great techniques for captivating an audience.

If you want some comic relief, watch this. It should entertain you in a unique way, especially if you are around the start-up/scale-up ecosystem. I cannot imagine how he does this with a straight face. Some of his quotes are so fun to ponder.

Here is a TEDx talk from Marcus Tandler, Affiliate Marketing Genius from Germany. I had the distinct pleasure meeting and working with Marcus and his team at while they were here in San Francisco over the past few weeks. Their team was one of the selected few to be chosen for the German Accelerator program here in Silicon Valley. When I saw him last week, he delivered an investor presentation to me that had 50 slides and he did it in 4:58! A record in my book and it was amazing!

The reason I invite you to watch this video is Marcus delivers not only a compelling talk, but he uses 209 slides in 18 minutes! You heard that right! Can you imagine seeing 209 slides in 18 minutes? Watch and see how it works beautifully! Well done Marcus!

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Here's an example of a great storyteller, Conrad Ricketts. He was the original Executive Producer for the popular TV program Extreme Makeover Home Edition for the first 6 seasons. Watch this short clip of him at a pep rally and you'll see how he uses his voice to communicate the emotion behind the story.

Take a look at this 30-second pitch by the CEO of SmugMug and see if you don't agree that he delivers a great pitch. His carefully chosen messaging is delivered with passion and enthusiasm. Listen carefully for the opening simile. It's elegant, simple, and brilliant!

Do you have an accent that is hard for some people to understand? BLACK demonstrates how to use a few well chosen words with perfectly timed pauses. Watch and learn from a master.

Remember the days you struggled just to make a yo-yo spin, and if you were really fancy, to "walk the dog"? You ain't seen nothin' yet. Japanese yo-yo world champion BLACK tells the inspiring story of finding his life's passion, and gives an awesome performance that will make you want to pull your yo-yo back out of the closet.

This is one of my most favorite TED talks because it helps you immediately understand why starting with the Why is so important. If you do not start with Why, you sound like most everyone else who is talking about their What. This is a perception changing video that will make you think very differently about how you talk about what you do and why you do it.

This investor pitch video is given by the Norwegian company Staaker. They are building an autonomous drone to film you instead of filming what you see from the top of a helmet or chest mounted GoPro camera. It's one of the coolest drones with artificial intelligence built in. You do not need to learn or know how to fly it. It just knows what to do based on several setting you send it via your smartphone. Check out his investor pitch here. It's a great one!

Håvard Lillebo, founder of Innotech Solar was successful in being selected to be among the 2013 Red Herring Europe Top 100 Winners. His presentation was made more successful because he rehearsed and rehearsed and rehearsed. (For the best viewing experience, be sure and change the resolution of the video to 720p.) 

This one is a TEDworthy talk, in my opinion. Eric Ryan, does an amazing job presenting Method.

He shares many insights with the audience about how a startup making soap could compete with the big established players out there AND in a fairly boring category too.

I had the fortunate experience of working with Anna Stork, Co-Founder of LuminAID. See what a great story they tell and how a low budget video can help when raising funds to launch the business!

This was an Indegogo crowdfunding project with a goal of $10,000 and they raised $51,829.

Enjoy their short story as they share the journey to helping people with a necessity in life that we mostly take for granted.