Category Archives: Sparky Says: Presentation & Public Speaking Tips

10 Tips to Boost Donations at Your Fundraiser Paddle Raise

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March 23, 2018

by Andy Saks, live auctioneer Often called “raise your paddle,” “fund a cause” or “fund the need,” a paddle raise is a great way to boost donations at your fundraiser. It asks donors to give specific dollar amounts to fund specific needs for the beneficiary. Donors usually signal their donations by raising their paddles (or pieces  Continue Reading »

7 Tips to Encourage Audience Questions in Your Presentation Q&A

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September 19, 2017

Ever seen a presenter ask “Any questions?” at the end of their presentation, and heard only crickets from the audience? In my work as a professional emcee and trade show presenter, I see it often, and it always makes me cringe because it’s so awkward, and so completely avoidable. Asking for questions and getting none  Continue Reading »

10 PowerPoint Alternatives That Make Your Presentation Memorable

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April 26, 2016

by Andy Saks Imagine attending a presentation on a topic that fires you up. As the speaker takes the stage, you anticipate an insightful, inspiring experience. Then a PowerPoint title slide appears on the screen. You estimate this will be the eight-billionth PowerPoint slide deck you’ve endured in your life, and hope the presentation will still be engrossing despite this old, tired, tedious format. But  Continue Reading »

Why Apple products make bad trade show booth giveaways

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October 30, 2015

by Andy Saks You’re planning a trade show booth. You know you need a “draw,” something special and cool to entice attendees to visit you and let you scan their badges. You think, “I know! Let’s have a drawing and give away a cool, new, coveted gadget like the…” And you likely end that sentence with the  Continue Reading »

4 key tips to help you be a good emcee

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May 13, 2015

by Andy Saks So you’ve been drafted to be an emcee at an upcoming seminar, awards ceremony, or other event? Don’t panic. You can do it, and do it well. You can even enjoy it. Recently, I published “6 tips to make your seminar or event emcee script sparkle.” This companion post tackles the other side  Continue Reading »

Trade show booth ideas: Booth babe or crowd gatherer?

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March 25, 2015

by Anders Boulanger, guest blogger Recently, I posted a blog that tore into using so-called “booth babes.” From a leads point of view, hiring booth babes does not work, and their very presence says something about your company and how you operate. I’ve overheard exhibitors use the term “booth babe” as a general term for hired  Continue Reading »

5 Public Speaking Tips from the Boston 2024 Summer Olympics Presentation

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January 19, 2015

by Andy Saks In mid-December, while the rest of us were caught up in the holiday rush, representatives of my home city of Boston pulled off an Olympic-sized feat. They delivered a presentation that successfully convinced the board of the United States Olympic Committee, the body that chooses the host city candidate to represent the U.S. in the international  Continue Reading »

50 Best Christmas quotes for you and your flock

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December 3, 2014

by Andy Saks No duplicates. No ads. No pop-ups. And none of the quotes you didn’t want anyway. Just the best 50 Christmas quotes I could find, the ones that express true sentiment and make you think. These are the quotes you’ll be proud to share in a Christmas dinner toast, church service, tree lighting, Facebook  Continue Reading »

6 tips to make your seminar or event emcee script sparkle

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November 26, 2014

by Andy Saks “Hey, we really need an emcee for our upcoming event. Last year we didn’t have an emcee, and the event was so lifeless and dull. Would you do the honors?” This is the moment many would-be emcees dread. They’re drafted into service, and take the gig reluctantly. Does that sound like your situation? If  Continue Reading »

Best Thanksgiving quotes for your toast

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November 19, 2014

by Andy Saks Thanksgiving is the perfect occasion to express your gratitude for the people and treasures in your life by giving a toast at your Thanksgiving table. Here’s a great collection of Thanksgiving quotes to help you share your thoughts (and practice your public speaking skills!). They’re organized in three categories: thoughtful, funny and religious. Have a Thanksgiving quote  Continue Reading »

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