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Being the Last Speaker at an Event Sucks—Unless You Tear It Up Like This

Ben Parr

By Molly Blake (original source Contently)

“When Ben Parr, the author of Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention got on stage at the West Coast Contently Summit, there was a pop. The bartenders at Tank18, the hipster San Francisco wine tasting room where the event was held, were starting to open wine bottles for attendees. Then a guy waltzed out with a bowl of steaming hot meatballs and set it on the bar. Happy hour was close.

Speaking at a conference in front of strangers isn’t easy, regardless of where you are in the lineup. Going first is tough since your speech sets the tone for the rest of the event. Giving a talk right before lunch and competing for attention with grumbling stomachs is always problematic. But last? Last is the worst. People are thinking about the drive home, the wine, whether they are getting a parking ticket.”

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