Joe Pulizzi from the Content Marketing Institute has said in an article that he will do over 40 speeches and keynotes, and more than 50 web presentations in a year. He has also said that, after his blog and books, speaking at public events has been one of the most effective aspects in growing his business.
He has provided a set of tips for presenting and speaking in public that will assist you in your future speaking endeavours.
- Include your Twitter handle on each slide. No matter the size or type of event you are speaking at, there are always several people who will actively be using Twitter. It is not enough to put your Twitter name only on the first slide as people may come in late, or not notice it. Since Pulizzi started adding his handle to each slide in his presentation, tweets have more than doubled. This is a highly effective way to spread your message and gain exposure.
- Add Tweetable sayings to your slides. Including sayings of no more than 140 characters and repeating them at least twice will ensure that the message will have the biggest impact possible on your audience.
- Promote your speech beforehand using the event’s hashtag. 24 hours before, and the morning of your speech, send out a tweet to let people know where and when you are speaking as well as what you are speaking about. Include the event’s hashtag to significantly increase your reach.
- Do not put more than 20 words on a slide. Use only headlines and main points to guide you through your topic. Make sure to include pictures to accompany your messages. Remember that if people have to take time to read your slide, they will lose interest.
- When using words, ensure that they are a minimum of 30 points in size. People from all distances and perspectives in the room should be able to comfortably read your slides.
- Do not speak behind a podium. This creates an unneeded barrier between you and your audience. It is important to speak with your audience, not at them.
- Do not be afraid to walk around. It is perfectly acceptable to find a few points on the stage between which you can walk as you speak. Hold your position at a spot for five seconds before moving on to the next one. You can also move on when beginning a new topic.
- Develop a unique speaking style. Pay attention to the way in which you represent yourself. Pulizzi always wears an orange shirt when speaking at events, and people have begun to familiarize him with the color orange. Enhancing your physical style will contribute significantly to being remembered and recognized by the audience.
- Remember to smile. Smiling is contagious and is a great way to break the ice with an audience when beginning your speech. Set cues for yourself every five minutes to remember to do so. This also helps to keep people awake and attentive.
- Include calls to action through short links. It is a great idea to provide links to additional information and resources in your slides. This will increase much-desired audience engagement.
- Give away a reward to encourage participation. This will help when it comes to the questions section of your presentation, and will also create networking opportunities when delivering the prize once it has ended.
- Have one key call to action. Don’t give the attendees too many options. Identify one thing that you want them to do from each speech and track the engagement through coupon codes or short links.
- Make use of lists. It is good practice to use numbers in your titles. They attract audiences and allow them to keep track of where you are in your speech as you present it.
- Adjust the flow every five minutest to include a story. Telling a story that is related to your point every eight minutes will maintain your audience’s interest and effectively deliver the message of your speech. People remember stories the most, and therefore this is an great technique to use, especially for longer presentations.
- Take note of repetition. Aristotle’s advice on speeches is: Tell the audience what you are going to tell them – this is the intro. In the body, tell them what you have said you are going to tell them; and when concluding, tell them what you just told them. This kind of set up ensures that your message will effectively “stick”.