University Marketing & Communications

July 3, 2014

Web Council: Call for Ignite-style presentations


Every December we send out a survey to get input on making Web Council even better. Last year, some attendees indicated they would like to see more Ignite-style presentations.

You asked and I aim to deliver!

Consider this a formal call for for speakers interested in the shorter Ignite presentation format. My goal is to incorporate three or four Ignite-style presentations back-to-back for both our August and September Web Councils. Ignite topics can cover anything relating to the Web—including technologies, code or even content.

All ready to submit a talk? Great! Just skip down to the bottom of this post.

What is an Ignite (or “lightning”) talk?

Ignite-style presentations follow a unique format: Each talk is just five minutes and includes twenty slides that auto advance every fifteen seconds. It’s a simple premise and best suited for topics that cover either a high-level overview or a small slice extracted from a bigger idea.

Prepare for an awesome Ignite presentation

Ignite talks may only be five minutes long, but they still require effort to prepare. Because the slides auto advance every fifteen seconds, your presentation can quickly turn into chaos if you’re not prepared.

But there’s good news! This is a popular format and many seasoned speakers have written tips and tricks to get you started. Here are some of my favorite resources:

And here are a few excellent Ignite videos from speakers who’ve mastered the format:

Sign up to present at Web Council

Have an idea for a Ignite-style talk? Email a pitch to that includes the following:

  • Your proposed talk title
  • One to three sentences about your topic
  • If you prefer to present during the August 21 or September 25 Web Council

That’s it! Rough titles and topics are welcome—there’s still plenty of time and I’ll happily help you polish your presentation.