If you’re a small business owner, or an entrepreneur, there will be times in your life where you need to speak publicly.
That’s just the way it goes in the nature of leadership.
In this post, I’m going to give you nine public speaking tips that will engage your audience.
#1. Don’t Start Immediately
After being introduced by the moderator, you come up and take the lectern. You should pause. Give it a little bit of time for the moment to sink in.
Allow people’s attention to be drawn to you. A lot of times people are looking down at their papers or whatever, just give it a pause and wait. Let them look at you, and then begin your speech.
#2. Know Your Content
I’ve done speeches where I was speaking on subjects I maybe wasn’t the most knowledgable about. Those speeches didn’t go so well.
And then, there have been speeches where I knew my subject inside out. I was very enthusiastic and excited about the subject. When I do that, people come up to me afterwards and thank me. That’s, in part, because I knew the content so well.
So, make sure that when you are giving your presentation you know your content very well.
#3. Have a Clear Message
When you give your presentation, it needs to be orderly and laid out in a way that’s easy for your people to understand.
Spend some time and prepare your speech in such a way that the main points are easy for people to digest and take home.
Have a clear message.
#4. Keep It Real
Don’t go outside the lines of reality or possibility. Keep it real.
People love authenticity.
People love it when you are real with them, and you share with them your experiences, your failures, and your successes.
#5. Use Good Body Language
Be aware of what you’re doing with your hands.
Often, when I’m giving a presentation, I tend to want to put one of my hands in my pocket, and gesture with my other hand. This makes me feel more relaxed.
You don’t need to do that. Keep your hands out of your pockets.
Keep your hands above your waistline, and use general gestures and body language that adds to and accentuates your message. Use good body language.
#6. Use Good Eye Contact
You must communicate with your audience via your eyes, as well as your mouth.
Look around the room. Look into the eyes of a person, and deliver your point. Then shift, and move over to another person. Look into their eyes and deliver that point. Then, shift around the room, and continue to do that.
Maintain clear eye contact with different people throughout your audience. That makes everyone feel included with your message. Use good eye contact.
#7. Make It Fun and Engaging
We all love a good story. We all love to laugh. When we laugh together, it bonds us together. If you are able to bring your audience into good humor? They’ll appreciate you.
Make them laugh, but also, make it useful. Make it fun. Use stories, anecdotes or illustrations that bring light to your message in a fun, engaging way.
#8. Use Pauses Well
When you make a point, pause. If you tell a joke, pause.
Use pauses throughout your message in order to maintain the attention of your listeners.
#9. Close With Purpose
So often, when we are just beginning in public speaking, we’ve put so much attention into the content that we forget about the closing.
We ramble through our content. Then when we realize our time is up, we abruptly close.
Think very clearly, and specifically, what you want your people to take away from your presentation. Maybe it’s a call to action that you want them to do after the speech. Or, maybe it’s a way to tie in with the introduction, and wrap it all up in a nice package with a bow on top that they can take home. Whatever it is, make sure that you close with purpose.
And there you have it…Nine public speaking tips to help you engage with your audience.
Here are 3 things you can do in response:
- Share this article with someone you know would benefit from reading it.
- Join my list and be notified whenever I publish new articles like this.
- Send me your thoughts and feedback.