Public speaking is rarely anyone’s favorite task. In today’s business climate, entrepreneurs must be prepared to pitch new ideas and promote their business. Learning to become a better public speaker is an invaluable marketing tool. Use these tips to improve your next presentation.
Learn Your Venue
If possible, head to your venue ahead of time, even if only by a few minutes. Get a feel for the room. Will you have a lectern to put your notes on (or to hide fidgeting)? Is there a big stage you’ll want to use?
Know Your Tech
Technical difficulties can detract from great speeches. Ask questions of the event organizer ahead of time. Will there be WiFi? Do you need to bring your own laptop, or projector cords? When you visit the room ahead of time, scope out the tech set-up as well.
Engage the Audience Early
If the group is small enough, chat with a few members of your audience beforehand. They may offer some insights of what points you’ll want to cover, or what their interests are. By the time you start, it will be more like continuing your discussion.
Memorize Your Introduction
Your entire speech shouldn’t be read off cards, or memorized completely, but knowing your introduction is solid can give you the confidence to keep going strong. After that, rely on prompts in your presentation or on note cards to carry you to the next thought.
Find a Friendly Face
A smile from the audience can reassure you that the speech is going smoothly. Find a couple of friendly faces to make eye contact with, and rotate between speaking to each audience member. This can help block anyone who looks bored, or is playing with their phone.
Open Up to Questions
Don’t wait until the end to ask for audience questions. Give them the opportunity to ask questions as you transition topics, or if you’re comfortable, as listeners raise their hands. Participants can provide great content for your overall presentation, and remind you to cover ideas you may not have remembered.
Don’t let your final sentence trail off and leave everyone in awkward silence. After questions, finish with a firm “Thank you.” Even better, finish with a call to action that tells audience members what they need to do next, i.e. visit this website, sign up here or find you afterwards for more information.
Here is a friend of Viral Solutions we admire very much. He is Michael Angelo Caruso and he has some wonderful tools to help you improve your public presentations. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE! Michael’s process, experience and wonderful programs were the inspiration for this article. Enjoy!
Need more help becoming a better public speaker? Contact us at Viral Solutions!
by Christine Kelly
CEO and Queen Bee | Viral Solutions LLC
Copyright 2015 Viral Solutions LLC