You can learn a lot from "a child"
Images, narration, text: the power of the slideshow

Another Grande Presentazione Italiana

Marco_montemagno Marco Montemagno is an Italian blogger, web entrepreneur, and CEO of one of the largest weblog networks in Europe called Blogosfere. He's also the host for a weekly TV show about news, Internet and media on Sky News (Sky TG24). I heard that Marco was a loyal reader of Presentation Zen so I checked out this presentation by Marco last year. I got another tip this week to watch a presentation by Marco which he made recently in front of 3000 people at the Interactive Advertising Bureau Forum 2007 conference. I liked the presentation, but I thought more of the world may enjoy it too if there were English subtitles. So I contacted Marco and asked him (he's fluent in English) if he could have this video translated. He did, and I am now passing the link on to you. Marco told me that this presentation is "100% Presentation Zen compliant."

As you can tell from the content, Italy is a little behind other parts of the world in terms of total acceptance of the Web. One of Marco's jobs is chairing conferences and giving speeches around Italy to help spread "Internet culture"  throughout the country. "There is still a lot of education to do in Italy," Marco says. "People do not use Internet that much, journalists and politicians either. But I hope the situation will change soon—at least I'm pushing people in this direction...." Watch the presentation below (click on the monitor icon to expand the size to "Full Screen" so you can read the subtitles).

Marco's talk was conversational and upbeat and in sync with his visuals, a good mix of photos, video, and text. His visuals could have been arranged in Keynote or PowerPoint and advanced with a remote, but he actually used Adobe Premiere to prepare and run the whole thing. You'll notice that he has no remote control in his hand. Instead he spoke as the visuals behind him—which were actually segments from a video—appeared in sync with his narration. He said it was actually hard to pull this off, but he did it, and the feedback was excellent from the audience (sure beats a boring talk from the lectern). He even got 3000 people to stand and applaud for the Internet—a bigger reaction I think that he expected. I say bravo! Well done. I always appreciate speakers at large conferences who eschew the lectern and bullet points and get right out there front and center (naked) and make a connection.



Very cool, although I find the disadvantages of a video based preso outweigh the advantages (insofar as last minute changes, and any spur of the moment thoughts are concerned) I was nonetheless very impressed though. It really is all in the delivery. Bravo Marco.

Seth Godin used a similar system during his 3-minute talk at TED global in 2005.It was a great way of ensuring that he did not overrun his time slot. What I noticed was during the presentation, it was absolutely perfect, but in subsiquent views you could se that he was slightly behind his slides. Still, yotube or not, as presenters we need to be in it for the audience first...!


thanks for sharing the link. Good to see other Italians following your advice on how to make presentations.
Will your new book make it to Italy?



Wow, without the subtitles I would not have seen how brilliant Marco was, not only in the timing of delivery and presentation - but also in the smart choice of graphics and taking a journey from the skeptical to the commercial - and on the way pack so much in that is relevant to any individual out there who has the capacity to think original or at least adaptive thoughts.

I would love to develop the skills to pull that delivery off, it was meaningful - and ultimately where McLuhan's portend was chiefly "beware", Marco here comes from a different lens of how to appreciate the virtual and "involution" how the internet can be usefully applied.

William Gibson shouldn't get stick for inventing the word "cyberspace" and in a documentary I viewed about him, apparently he doesn't immerse himself in technologies that we would expect. Altogether this is worth another view because it is one of those things that packs so much in, that it can spark different thoughts depending where one watches it.

So I certainly appreciate Marco taking the time and effort to get this subtitled, the presentation was enough to push my buttons and broaden my own thoughts about it is I want to interact (and practical wisdom today is the great new personal choice of our age).



We BBP-ers have started a discussion at this link:
I have feelings that we are allowing charisma to overcome narrative... we may have lost in translation but I got the feeling that the myth got more emphasis than the debunking of the myth... which means that the call to action could be like the lead balloon. I love Italian style but...

Marco Montemagno

Hi Tartle!
Yes without all the images you loose the general meaning :(
Try to have a look to this video from the public point of view, where you can see all the images and let me know if something change in your perception:

Ciao :)

John Watkis

I think Marco did a brilliant job with his opening. His reference to "Matrix" set an excellent tone. He has a natural charisma, relaxed presentation style and knows how to interact with his audience.

All that being said, I'm wondering if he spent as much time on the wording of his speech as he did on the visuals. He must have rehearsed the presentation numerous times to sync it with the video. If the visuals had been used more sparingly (just for playing the videos) and the wording had received more attention, I think it could have been even more powerful.

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