Mastering Periscope

Keeping up with the latest social media tools that pop up weekly can be rather daunting. It’s a journey of discovery, of trial and error, as you try to figure out how the tool works. Then, there’s that sharp learning curve, working outside your comfort zone. Even more challenging is deciding if the tool is the right one for you, i.e. is it the one that best suits your needs?

I find that taking a step back and thinking about the skills I already have and how they can be applied to these new ways of working and thinking can be helpful. I often ask myself, “What basic techniques do I already have that I can directly apply to this new tool to achieve some great results?”

One of the more recent tools that grabbed my attention, as well as the 10 million+ others who use it, is Periscope, a live video broadcasting system acquired by Twitter, in January, 2015. People are jumping on to this craze of creating instant, in the moment videos, talking about things they are really passionate about, hoping to attract an audience and gain some loyal fans. While there are some good #scopers out there, truth is, there are far more who are pretty poor at working it. Even with the best equipment, e.g. microphones; tripods; and lighting to use for a good scope, you have to be able to create a quality video that is worth watching. And the key to doing so is having effective presentation skills. Even if you only have a simple smart phone, you can still put together a great broadcast. You just need to apply some old school presentation tips to create that eye-catching video. Here are some presentation techniques I learned in a course called Powerful Presentations, I took quite awhile ago. They have really worked well for me as I hone my skills with Periscope. Give them a try and I am sure they will work equally well for you, as you create your Periscope videos.


1. Keep your presentation short, punchy, and well signposted.

  • The viewer will quickly lose attention and tune out if he/she doesn’t see where you are going with your message and what’s in it for her/him to stick around.
  • Don’t get sidetracked by saying hello to every viewer and answering every comment that comes up on the screen. Just like a presentation to a real audience, you are in control. You decide how and when to interact and handle questions.

2. Focus on your audience, not on you.

  • Think about what your audience will find interesting to listen to, not what you find interesting to tell them. Think about what you want them to know; how you want them to feel as a result of this presentation; and what you want them to do about it.

3. Use the 3×3 rule.

  • Tell them three things you want them to know/learn and tell each of them 3 times.


In my view, the 3×3 rule is by far the most powerful of these techniques.

Limiting yourself to 3 key points may seem restrictive. But, for some reason, it works really well. Less is often more! By repeating the message 3 times, the key points become memorable. The audience is left without any doubts about what you were talking about.


So here’s what I suggest you do, in order to be successful.

  1. Start by introducing yourself and your topic. Remember most of the audience may never have seen you before, so tell them who you are, why you are here, and how to connect with you.


  1. Briefly introduce the 3 things you are going to talk about, spending a few seconds on each. This signposts the whole #scope, leaves the audience in no doubt about what to expect, and allows them to decide whether its worth sticking around.


  1. Then go into the meat of your presentation talking in detail about each of the 3 things in turn. Be careful to stay on script as you go into more detail. Try not to ramble, and don’t jump about. You should have your audience with you. Remember; it’s easy to lose them.


Conclude your presentation with a brief summary. Briefly recap each of the 3 things about which you have talked.

In short, tell them what you are going to tell them; then, tell it to them; finally, tell them what you told them. With some old-fashioned structure and planning, mastering new media doesn’t need to be all that painful.

These techniques helped me overcome problems when I first started scoping myself. Though I wouldn’t claim to be brilliant at it, I think I’ve learned quite a lot from watching others and picking up on the things I didn’t like. Happy scoping and looking forward to watching you on Periscope!

For more tips/techniques on working with Periscope, please contact me at I’ll send you my 3 tips on how to avoid destroying a great #scope.


Kevin Appleby, guest blogger, is an experienced chartered accountant who helps small and medium size business owners achieve their goals. He helps take their business to the next level. You can find out more about Kevin at

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