When you build a solid brand via a book or writing a professional blog consistently for a long time, something really #RockHot™ happens.
You get invited to speak and present in front of really cool people. When you’re really accomplished you get to keynote, like Jay Baer who’s traveling the country talking about his new book, Youtility.
I have been speaking a lot in the last few years using a variety of mediums:
- Podcasting with my dear friend and colleague Jon Buscall right here, here and here about a variety of topics mainly small business marketing, my first book and social media leadership.
- E-learning classes to the University of Tennessee Executive MBA Leadership class featuring a headset and microphone speaking to others on headsets in listen-only mode.
- To tiny classrooms at local colleges to assist the adjunct professors who teach in their spare time for peanuts.
- To groups of my peers in workshops and day conferences (where I recently presented on Savvier Social Media Across the Marketing Blend in Louisville right here).
7 Tips About Speaking to Consider
- Find the Friendly. If you get an opportunity to meet folks in advance prior to your presentation and you can build a quick connection, invite them to sit toward the front of the room. You must zero in on a friendly face when you present. All speakers need a nod of encouragement or a grin at a lame joke to keep the pace and delivery going smoothly.
- Embrace the Hecklers. Not only are hecklers fearsome for speakers, they are necessary and should sit right in the front row. The last two times I presented to larger crowds, a row of hecklers sat right in front and they laughed where they were supposed to, interjected a question or answer and listened intently. There were a few wise cracks, too; all in the name of support and positivity. (Want to know who the best hecklers are? Roho aka Rosemary O’Neill, president of Social Strata and Gini Dietrich, CEO of Arment Dietrich!)
- Use One Liners to Advantage. Invariably, the audience will shoot something out in response to a speaker’s statement. If it’s someone who has been controlling every presentation, go ahead and shoot something snarky in return IF that’s the tone of your presentation. It can go both ways, so be confident you can pull it off as a presenter.
- Go Off Script to Connect. Seasoned presenters know their decks by heart and often they talk on the same topic so the content has become second nature. Because many people travel to many conferences and they often get a chance to hear you present more than once, be sure to freshen your content with something new from the audience. That natural connectivity is so important to an audience; especially when you’re listening intently and reincorporating instant commentary into your presentation.
- Listen to Others’ Presentations. Prior to your session, unless you’re on first, listen to what all the speakers are saying. Better yet, listen to the questions from the audience. You can insert these comments and subjects into your presentation at the last minute. It makes what you’re saying relevant and drills home a more personalized presentation.
- Insert Tweets. Get the time of your presentation. Get the hashtag for the event. Write tweets and schedule them DURING your presentation so when the audience is ready to tweet something, they will be impressed that you already prepared tweets for them to retweet. (I did this for a recent presentation, and the tweets in response were complimentary.)
- Put an Ad in the Deck. I invited Trackur to send me an advertisement for my presentation deck, and I built in a segue to that ad. There was a discount for this social media listening tool for attendees, and the ad remains in my deck posted on SlideShare. Smart, eh?
What say you?