Gauging the Crowd


I present to a wide array of audiences. Educators, Leaders, Parents, etc.

One of my favorite uses of the Word Cloud and the Upvote/Downvote feature is to instantly give me a gauge of what the audience make-up is like. As most of my talks are about technology, one of the first slides I show is a poll everywhere poll to gather this data quickly. My first clue about the audience’s view on technology is whether or not they can even get to the poll. :slight_smile:

Below are two sample polls I’ve used with different audiences:

The poll on the left is an upvote/downvote poll that asks teachers to vote on how they would describe technology usage in their schools. This poll tells me I have a pretty split audience in the room before I address the topic, which means there are opportunities for those with successes to share with those who are struggling.

For the poll on the right, I asked a small group of parents what their one-word response to describe social media would be in a word cloud poll. As you can tell example, the parents tended to use many negative words like overwhelming, dangerous, etc. There fore, I adjusted my talk to get into why they feel this way and how we can make it a more positive experience. If they had said mostly positive answers, I would have stretched their thinking and asked them to share positive experiences with it.

Regardless of reasons - I feel an intro poll as a pre-assessment of your audience, can greatly help identify the make-up of your audience and allow you to adjust your message accordingly thus making it much more effective. It also makes the audience more invested in your message because they feel like they are being heard.