We posted an article awhile ago called “How to Build Relationships Through Networking” where we mentioned different ways you can meet people and get connected. One of the ways you can do this is by attending and speaking at events. Once you have scheduled to speak somewhere, you may be wondering how you should go about it. Well, we have put together some guidelines below that should help improve the effectiveness of your speech. Enjoy it, 10 Tips for Effective Public Speaking…
1. Be You, but Cater to Your Audience
Don’t try to act a certain way or tell jokes you aren’t comfortable with, just be yourself. People want to connect with you and see that you are genuine. Instead of aiming to impress people, just share your experiences and knowledge in your own unique way. Remember that this isn’t all about you. People don’t want to hear intimate details of your personal life or irrelevant information, people want to learn from you and use the information you share to change their own lives. Know who your audience is and cater to what they are looking for.
2. Be an Expert not a Speaker
Being a good public speaker is great, but you have to be more than that. The audience doesn’t just want to watch a show or performance, they want to learn from it. Share information that others will be able to use in their own business life. Speak in such a way that reflects how much you know about the topic. Telling stories and sharing experiences is fine as long as it relates to your expertise in your field.
3. Be Passionate
If you aren’t interested in what you are speaking about, your audience won’t be either. You have a reason to share your thoughts, express that reason through your passion.
4. Don’t Use a Cookie-Cutter speech
Reciting the same speech at every event not only gets tiring for you, but could hurt you in the end. Stay updated on current events and industry news so you can make sure your presentation is up to date. It is okay to have the same speech outline for each event, but make sure to add new examples and share new experiences here and there. Also, keep in mind the audience you will be speaking to. Every event is different and you may need to change a few things depending on the type of people you will be talking to.
5. Speak don’t read
If you are using a PowerPoint presentation, do not read the slides word for word. Slides are meant to aid you, not be the center of your presentation. Never use a PowerPoint as a crutch or it will negatively affect your presentation. Be prepared to speak without it in case technological difficulties may arise. PowerPoints should only have key points on them and not display your entire presentation.
6. Keep it short and direct
Make sure you do not take too much time while speaking to others. Do not go on and on about the same thing because people will get bored and eventually tune you out. Be direct and say what you need to say without repeating yourself. Leave some extra time at the end for questions and discussion.
7. Teach don’t sell
No one wants to sit and watch someone advertise to them, so don’t do it to your audience. Teach people, inspire them and give them a reason to listen to you. Don’t endlessly talk about how great your book is or why they should buy your products. Instead give them a little preview of the topics you discuss in your book and educate them on your passion so that at the end of your speech they will be interested to find out more.
8. Record every session
If you speak at an event have someone record it for you. Then you will have a copy to add to your business website, blog, YouTube channel, or social media page. If people find your videos online and like what you have to say, they may want to learn more. Always make sure to link back to your website and give people a way to contact you.
9. Speak About it On Social Media
If you are going to attend an event, let everyone know where you will be speaking. People may be willing to spread the word or even attend the event themselves. If there is a #hashtag on Twitter for the event or even a Facebook page, find others who will be there. Connect with them beforehand to establish a relationship. If anyone mentions your speech on social media, be sure to comment and reply back with your gratitude.
10. Connect and Repeat
Make sure you talk with people one on one at the event. Make new friends and connections that you can keep in contact with. Then speak again somewhere else and repeat the process. The more exposure you have the better.
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