360° Coverage : TED Talks Are Wildly Addictive For Three Powerful, Scientific...

10 Updates
TED Talks Are Wildly Addictive For Three Powerful, Scientific Reasons
Photo Credit: Forbes Business

TED Talks Are Wildly Addictive For Three Powerful, Scientific Reasons

Feb 25 2014, 7:14am CST | by

Ideas are the currency of the 21st century. You can have brilliant ideas—truly revolutionary ideas—but if you cannot persuade others to act, those ideas don’t matter. Today, thanks to the world-...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

22 weeks ago

TED Talks Are Wildly Addictive For Three Powerful, Scientific Reasons

Feb 25 2014, 7:14am CST | by

Ideas are the currency of the 21st century. You can have brilliant ideas—truly revolutionary ideas—but if you cannot persuade others to act, those ideas don’t matter. Today, thanks to the world-famous TED conference, independently organized TEDx community events, and new research into the science of persuasion, we’ve learned more about what inspires people than we’ve ever known. Using fMRI brain scans to look at blood flow in the brain, we can see which parts of the brain are engaged and when that engagement occurs. We now know what moves people, and we can prove it scientifically.

This post is part of a series of articles based on my new book, Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds (St. Martin’s Press).

In March the annual TED conference (Technology/Entertainment/Design) celebrates its 30th anniversary. The event brings together the world’s leaders, thinkers, and innovators to deliver 18-minutes or less TED “talks.” The presentations are informative, educational, and inspiring. They are also wildly addictive. TED talks have been viewed online more than one billion times. TED videos are viewed at the rate of two million times per day. TEDx events are organized eight times a day and have been held in 145 countries. Like it or not, your next presentation is being compared to TED. Business leaders, entrepreneurs, pastors and spiritual leaders are being asked by their audiences, investors, and congregations to be more “TED-like.”

After analyzing more than 500 TED presentations (more than 150 hours) and speaking directly to successful TED speakers and leading neuroscientists in the field of communication and persuasion, I’ve discovered that the most popular TED presentations share three basic principles, or what I call “unbreakable laws.” In my upcoming posts I will explain each of these laws in much further detail along with examples, video links, and interviews. Broadly speaking, ideas that spread are emotional, novel, and memorable.

Emotion: Ideas that spread touch our hearts.

In order for persuasion to occur, you must touch a person’s heart before reaching their head. The most popular TED speakers connect with audiences on a deeply emotional level primarily because they’re storytellers. In my analysis, stories made up 65 to 72 percent of the most successful TED presentations. The best storytellers also use humor, exude commanding body language, and incorporate animated verbal delivery. Above all, they are passionate about their topic; passionate to the point of obsession.

Dr. Larry Smith, an economics professor at the University of Waterloo, gave a popular TEDx talk titled, Why You Will Fail To Have a Great Career. He said the formula for success is simple—follow your passion and you’ll have a great career; don’t follow it and you won’t. Smith’s presentation, which is has been viewed more than two million times, is notable for the fact that he doesn’t use any slides. He commands the attention of his audience through the passionate delivery he brings to the topic.

Scientists have discovered that passion—like the enthusiasm that Dr. Smith exudes on stage—is, indeed, contagious. Researchers call it “mood contagion.” In one series of studies leaders who were more “positive” in their communication (passionate, enthusiastic, and optimistic) were perceived to be more effective and, as a result, more likely to persuade their audiences to take a desired action.

You stand a much greater chance of persuading and inspiring your listeners if you express your passionate and meaningful connection to your topic.

Novelty: Ideas that spread teach us something new

YouTube trends manager Kevin Allocca told a TEDx audience that in a world where two days of videos get uploaded every minute, “only that which is truly unique and unexpected can stand out.” Science backs up Allocca’s observation. According to Dr. A. K. Pradeep, “Our brains are trained to look for something brilliant and new, something that stands out, something that looks delicious.”

Ideas stick when they are packaged as new, surprising, and unexpected—something ‘delicious.’ I recently wrote this article about Bill Gates’ TED talk where he released mosquitoes during a presentation on the topic of malaria in third world countries. It was completely unexpected. When the brain detects something unexpected or surprising, it immediately says, “Oh, here’s something new. I’d better pay attention.” The chemical dopamine is released which acts as your brain’s natural “save button.” Dopamine is so important to retention and learning that when it’s present we tend to remember an experience or a message. When it’s absent, nothing seems to stick.

Novelty is the single most effective way to capture a person’s attention.

Memorable: Ideas that spread are easy to recall.

Lackluster content will leave your audience bored, but a memorable presentation is one your audience is much more likely to share long after your presentation is over.

The best TED speakers make their presentations memorable by doing the following:

-Use pictures instead of text on their slides whenever possible (picture superiority).

-Rely on the rule of three to deliver their content (three stories, three parts, etc.)

-Focus on one key theme, the “one thing” they want the audience to know.

Above all, TED talks are memorable because no speaker is allowed to talk for more than 18 minutes on the TED stage. It doesn’t matter if your name is Bill Gates, Sheryl Sandberg, Bono, or Tony Robbins who joked that he found the 18-minute rule extra challenging because his shortest seminar was 50 hours. TED curator Chris Anderson said it best, “Eighteen minutes is long enough to be serious and short enough to hold people’s attention.”

The 18-minute rule works because the brain is an energy hog. The average adult human brain only weighs about three pounds, but it consumes an inordinate amount of glucose, oxygen, and blood flow. As the brain takes in new information and is forced to process it, millions of neurons are firing at once, burning energy and leading to fatigue and exhaustion. The act of listening can be as equally draining as thinking hard about a subject.

I can already hear the pushback—How can I possibly be expected to say everything I need to say in 18 minutes? A lot can happen in 18 minutes. John F. Kennedy inspired a nation to look to the stars in 15 minutes. In a 15-minute TED talk, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg inspired millions of women to “lean in.” It took Dr. Martin Luther King a bit longer to share his dream of racial equality—he did it in 17 minutes. If these leaders can inspire their audiences in 18 minutes or less, it’s plenty of time for you to pitch your idea!/>/>

You may never be invited to speak at TED, but if you want to succeed in business you’d better be able to deliver a TED-worthy presentation. TED represents a bold, fresh, contemporary, and persuasive style that will help you win over any audience.

Carmine Gallo is a popular keynote speaker, internationally recognized communication coach, and author of the new book, Talk Like TED: The 9-Public Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds. Learn more at talkliketed.com

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
10

7 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the Dewan Rak ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

7 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into by robb ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

7 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the Dewan Rakyat tod ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

7 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk S ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

7 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Sela ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

8 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in compensat ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

8 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister D ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

8 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involving an allo ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

8 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramadan Bazaar Scheme 2014 ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

8 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Damansara Sk ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Liberia reports new Ebola cases
Lagos, Aug 1 (IANS) The Liberian government has reported new Ebola cases as of July 28.
 
 
Japanese men's life expectancy over 80 years for first time
Tokyo, Aug 1 (IANS/EFE) The life expectancy of Japanese men stood at 80.21 years in 2013, the first time that men have gone past the 80-year mark in the Asian country, according to the country's ministry of health, labour and welfare.
 
 
Methane created mysterious Siberian crater: Study
London, Aug 1 (IANS) The mysterious crater spotted in the frozen Yamal peninsula in Siberia earlier this month was probably caused by methane released as permafrost thawed, Russian researchers say.
 
 
Why some people can cope with short sleep
New York, Aug 1 (IANS) Most people require seven to nine hours of sleep to have proper daytime functioning, but some people can function normally on less than six hours of sleep per night owing to a gene mutation, says a study.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Sandhu-Chinappa bow out of squash quarters
Glasgow, Aug 1 (IANS) Indian squash players Harinder Pal Sandhu and Joshana Chinappa bowed out from the mixed doubles quarter-finals when they lost 1-2 to New Zealand pair Martin Knight and Joelle King at the...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Ray Winstone: I questioned by beliefs after Noah
Ray Winstone says filming 'Noah' made him question his beliefs. The 57-year-old actor - who starred opposite Russell Crowe in the biblical epic - admits playing Tubal-cain in the movie made him think more about his own...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Chris Pratt shocked by Hollywood success
Chris Pratt is shocked by the attention he has received in Hollywood over the past 10 years. The 35-year-old actor admits he didn't expect to be as successful as he has become but he feels grateful for everything that...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Six killed in Algeria earthquake
Algiers, Aug 1 (IANS) An earthquake measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale that shook this Algerian capital Friday morning has killed six people and injured about 420 others, according to the country's health ministry....
Read more on Politics Balla
 
India miss out on bronze in lawn bowls
Glasgow, Aug 1 (IANS) India narrowly missed on a medal in lawn bowls losing out to Australia in the men's fours bronze medal play-off match in the 2014 Commonwealth Games at the Kelvingronve Lawn Bowls centre here...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Modi has tightly packed itinerary in Kathamandu
Kathmandu, Aug 1 (IANS) An address to Nepal's parliament -- the first by a foreign head of state after the restoration of parliamentary democracy in the Himalayan nation in 1990, and special prayers at the famed...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Daniel Radcliffe movie premiere axed
Daniel Radcliffe was unable to walk the red carpet at the Mexican premiere of 'What If' because of crowd problems. The 25-year-old actor had been due to appear at the event yesterday (31.08.14) but Mexico City's civil...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Karrueche Tran dumps Chris Brown
Karrueche Tran has ended her relationship with Chris Brown for good. The 26-year-old beauty is reportedly tired of her on/off boyfriend's ''immature'' ways and thinks he is ruining his life by putting partying ahead of...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Kelly Rowland will focus on marriage
Kelly Rowland will focus on her husband when her baby is born. The 'Motivation' singer and her manager spouse Tim Witherspoon will welcome their first child, a son, into the world later this year and she says one of the...
Read more on Celebrity Balla