Most people I know would rather go to the dentist for a tooth extraction than deliver a speech in front of their potential clients!
This used to be me, but since I conquered my fears of public speaking my personal brand has really taken off. I now get paid for public speaking at marketing events on some of my favourite topics.
Watch Wunderbar The Marketing Efficiency Show to discover my favourite tactics.
And if you prefer to read on, here’s 10 tactics you can use to beat your fears, start building your personal brand and get more business by delivering talks.
Know your niche
The first step is to make a decision on what it is you want to be known for. This will then form the basis of all your talks and will really help you target and become more attractive to the right event organisers.
Get to know your audience
Successful public speaking is not just about how you deliver your talk, but also making the message irresistible for your audience. Once you’ve taken time to get to know the people you’re delivering your content to and understand what they need from you, you’ll be in a far better position to help them, which will in turn boost your confidence.
Identify your audience’s problems
When you’re researching the topic you’ll speak on for a particular event, you need to identify what keeps your audience awake at night and how you can create a talk around that pain point that will help them.
Here’s some practical ways you do this:
- Join event Facebook groups – How does your message relate to their pain points – use them as examples.
- Ask the events organisers about their audience – They’ll be willing to help, after all they want you to present a highly valuable talk.
- Talk to your audience – Although this may not be possible until the day of the event, chatting to people will not only set you at ease but it will give you a sense of the kind of people who’re in attendance and how you can help them.
Use your personal story
Tying your own personal story into your talk is so powerful. If you give something of yourself you’ll be so much more memorable.
If you struggle with nerves (and this is a good thing, because it shows you care) visualisation can be really powerful. Visualise yourself doing well and imagine how that feels. I picture the outfit I’m wearing, how the venue looks, and imagine myself delivering my best ever talk.
Practice makes perfect to conquer your fears of public speaking
Practise at a local college where you can give a talk – build your confidence
Do a live broadcast on your YouTube channel or in your FB group with a section of your talk and ask for feedback.
Record yourself doing your talk and (as painful as it may be!) listen back to it and make tweaks and adjustments where necessary.
Create on brand visuals
Try to create slides (or get help from a graphic designer) and use visuals that are consistent with your personal brand.
For me, as a personal brand and social media coach, I want my audience to think of Lollipops and the energy I can bring to their personal brand on social so many of my slides feature lollipops as well as all my brand colours.
Stop procrastination when working on your talk
It’s so important to plan for your talk preparation and schedule time in for it in your diary. If you don’t make time to prepare, it won’t happen or end up being a very last minute project which you won’t enjoy.
I recommend using these steps below as a guide, and adding 60 minute slots into your diary for each of these steps.
Here are the 10 main stages to preparation:
- Decide on your topic
- Create sub headings that will deliver your message
- Research stories which will help you demonstrate your points
- Create a skeleton of your talk
- Plan any handouts/downloads and ways to promote yourself in a non douchey way
- Create the presentation
- Rehearse each section
- Refine the talk
- Learn it by heart
- Promote your upcoming appearance on social media.
Get there early
Let your inner operations director loose and check out the AV set up early with the events organiser. This will make you feel more at ease leading up to the event.
Getting there early on the day to make sure everything is ready for you will also make you feel much calmer and in control.
How’s this going to change your approach to public speaking? Are you ready to go out there and spread your message to the world?
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This blog was last updated February 2020.