Credibility and understanding the audience, the key to win your audience

Written by Student Reporter (Priskila Ranindhita Hapsari, Manajemen 2022)

Winning an audience’s heart is challenging, but what’s more challenging is winning their interest through an online platform, especially if they are students. Guest lecture Desi Anwar and Riko Anggara shared their experiences and insights on engaging with an audience through effective communication. 

As a news anchor, Desi Anwar has had her fair share of interviews with public figures like Henry Kissinger, Bill Gates, Margaret Thatcher, Christine Lagarde, and the former president of Indonesia, SBY others. She shared how challenging it could be to engage with different types of people, particularly intimidating individuals. 

Throughout her career, she learned important things to consider to keep the conversation interesting:

  1. Having credibility
    First of all, we have to be prepared. We have to let our messages get through to show our professionalism. Credibility is not something you expect, but you earn to gain respect as an equal.
  2. Developing a connection
    We, as humans, must have a connection with one another. An important factor is creating trust, making the other person feel comfortable and open. It’s not just about us, but it’s also about them, and we want to make them feel important.
  3. Being in control of the situation
    Having confidence is required to be composed in an intimidating situation. There is a bigger chance that the other person is more nervous than us. Listening is the key to get a grip of understanding towards the other person and to keep the conversation going.
  4. Maintaining energy
    Without energy, there is no connection or chemistry, which will result in the audience’s loss of interest. Our minds should be present the way we physically are. Communication and the energy we radiate should remain consistent throughout the conversation.
  5. Knowing your audience
    Last but not least, we must understand what our audiences want. In a diverse audience, we should connect the dots and create a common ground. We could do so by putting ourselves in their shoes, even if we must get out of our comfort zone. 

Desi believes that everyone has a story. “If we listen closely, it will definitely be an interesting story. We could learn from it and even get inspired by it,” Desi said, “what you must understand is that everything requires communication no matter what the platform is.” She feels like everything she has been through helped her become the person she is now; she’s learned from the people she interviewed and felt inspired by each one of them. Desi Anwar ended the first session with a statement, “sometimes talking isn’t just about teaching; it’s also about learning.”

 

Riko Anggara, the Executive Producer and Reporter of KOMPAS TV, highlighted Desi Anwar’s statement on credibility and understanding the audience. He elaborated more on why we should know our audience. It’s not just about understanding them, but also about adjusting how we talk to make them feel like they need to listen to us out of interest instead of being obligated to listen, initiating reciprocity. 

“A good public speaker is a good storyteller,” Riko said. Besides having the right words to say, Riko emphasized on self-representation. He mentioned that when it comes to the online screen, content is not the only important thing. Riko continued, “an example can be seen from the first-ever US presidential debate in 1960.” During the radio debate, Vice President Richard Nixon gained more popularity than Kennedy since he has had more experience. Still, after the debate was aired on television, President John F. Kennedy seemed to have raked the people’s interests. The debate that was broadcasted on television showed how Kennedy represented himself physically and maintained eye contact to keep in touch with the audience. “We must look presentable, and we must have a connection with the audience through eye contact as if we’re interacting,” Riko concluded as he proved his point.