You should make your message accessible to a diverse audience.
There are three categories of readers in most audiences
People in ...
your field of specialization
fields closely related to yours
To satisfy them all, you should ...
Provide context for your work.
Explain the big picture and why the problem is important.
Use plain language to present your work.
Avoid jargon and acronyms unless you're really positive that yours
will be a specialist-only audience.
Interpret your findings so that readers in all
categories can understand how your work helps solve
the problem you've described.
>>Consider the alternatives>>
|Audience Category|| ||Requirements|
People in your field of specialization,
including your competitors.
No special efforts are required to attract them.
They will read whatever you present, no matter how well or poorly you present it.
People in fields closely related to yours
are worth capturing, because they can have interesting
insights and perspectives about your work.
They will require that you supply context for your work.
They are likely to be unfamiliar with your jargon.
People in unrelated fields
can be attracted by an accessible message, and provide
valuable insights and links to distant fields.
They require you to explain the problem and the solution.
They will not understand your jargon.
Alternatively,consider the type of meeting.
For example, Symposium on the Behavioral Ecology of Ants.
You can assume
a high level of disciplinary knowledge, use jargon, and
take other presentation shortcuts.
For example, Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting.
You can assume familiarity with the discipline in general,
but there are so many sub-specialties that jargon is to
be avoided and language simplified.
Very general audience.
For example, a town-hall meeting on wildlife conservation.
You cannot assume familiarity with any discipline and must
explain everything in the most basic terms.