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SPI 105: S.P.L.A.T.—The Neuroscience Behind a Great Presentation, a Solid Pitch, and Total Attention

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.” —Sun Tzu, The Art of War

In business, we face enemies every single day.

Of course, there are the trolls, spammers and hackers who are important to understand and deal with, but there’s a bigger enemy out there, one that if we don’t understand, well…we might as well not even be in business.

What Is That Enemy?

It’s everything out there that causes our audience to tune out. The things that stop us from influencing and teaching our audience in a way that will be remembered and enable them to take action.

It doesn’t matter if we’re presenting live on stage, on a webinar, recording a video or podcast, or even writing a blog post—the truth is that there are a ton of things out there getting in our way and working against us, and a lot of it is our own fault.

We don’t realize it, but often times we are the ones making it hard for our audience to engage and fully understand our message.

The best way to defeat this enemy is by getting to the root and understanding what’s going on in the human brain, which is why I’m excited to have Bryan Kelly from What The Speak on the SPI Podcast today.

On WhatTheSpeak, Bryan has deep discussions with experts about everything that helps people succeed when presenting, speaking and pitching. His content doesn’t just apply to those who are on stage though—it applies to all of us who are building an audience. And remember, we’re pitching all of the time, even if you’re not selling anything.

If you’re trying to get your audience to take some sort of action, from clicking on a link to subscribing to your email list, there is some kind of pitch involved.

On this episode, we cover S.P.L.A.T., which serves as a way to remember 5 important aspects of audience engagement and better presenting our ideas. What’s cool is that Bryan, who has read and listened to SPI for a while, also saw me speak in Vegas earlier this year and pulls a lot of examples from my own teaching and how it aligns with neuroscience and what’s happening in our heads.

And we also cover what I could have done better too, which is important.

If You Enjoyed This Session…

Thank you for listening! To get more SPI content sent directly to your device, you can subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher!

Also, reviews on iTunes are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! I read each and every one of them, and feel free to share your URL there so I can contact you later on and say thanks!

And lastly, if you have any questions (or would like answers to previously submitted voicemail questions!), head on over to! The bite-sized show is approaching 1,000,000 total plays!

Today’s Guest

Bryan Kelly

My guest today is Bryan Kelly, founder of [Editor’s note: This site is no longer active.] 

You’ll Learn

  • How to hold an audience’s attention, and what’s stopping it from happening.
  • What helps people remember what you share, say and do.
  • Specific strategies that I’ve used on stage to capture people’s attention.
  • Why I use video in my presentations and on my blog.
  • How to start your blog posts and podcast episodes for maximum engagement.
  • Why the safety of your audience matters, and what that really means.
  • How getting people involved and group discussions could work against you.
  • The science behind learning and how to best teach our audience for maximum impact.
  • Why change is good, and how to utilize change in your blog posts and podcasts to keep people’s interest.
  • The science behind visual learning (and how our brains process visual learning versus other types of learning)


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Smart Passive Income Podcast

with Pat Flynn

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