How to connect with your audience at public speaking events
Public speaking engagements are your opportunity to deliver your company message personally to your key audience. Whether you’re announcing a new product, holding a news conference or even responding to a crisis, you want to make a positive impression and establish connection and understanding with your key stakeholders.
Here are six easy steps to follow to guarantee your speaking-engagement success:
1. Be prepared.
Spend enough time with your speech material preparing and practicing. It will make you sound confident and fluent. It’s helpful to have an outline of what you want to say, but avoid reading a full speech; it will bore your audience.
- Know your audience.
One main key to successful public speaking is to know and understand your audience. Prior to any public speaking engagement, you should find out your audience’s size, knowledge levels, key interests and demographics. You’ll want to tailor your speech based on these factors to truly engage and empower your listeners.
- Speak clearly.
Cut down on extra words when you speak by avoiding fillers. You’ll sound more confident if you make your words concise. Make sure you don’t speak too fast and insert logical pauses between your main points to give your audience a chance to better comprehend your material.
- Have a strong opening.
Your first impression is very important. Public speaking is just like your written article: If your lead paragraph is not interesting, no one is going to read the rest of your story. If your opening statement isn’t strong, you’ll fail to make an impactful first impression on your audience. Ask a question, tell a joke or share a personal story to get your audience’s attention and engage them right away.
- Be conversational and easy to communicate with.
Use easy-to-understand language. Ask your audience questions to draw attention to what you are saying and share experiences. Make sure that your body language is relaxed. Successful public speakers usually move around while speaking to engage more with their audiences.
- Use visuals.
Prepare strong visual materials to support your message. Listeners will be more engaged if you have some visuals in addition to your story. You can use charts, infographics, presentations, photos and even comics.
Public speaking engagements are your unique chance to connect with your audience personally and deliver your message. Axia Public Relations is proficient in making your every PR effort successful. Watch our Media and Spokesperson Training webinar to learn more ways to engage and connect with your audience during a speaking engagement.
Yulia Dianova is a public relations professional who is skilled in building relationships with target audiences. She provides counsel to organizations that seek PR help to further their growth and reach their goals. Yulia earned a master’s degree in public relations management from University of Maryland University College. She is fluent in Russian and English and is always looking for a new challenge. Yulia has worked for Axia Public Relations since July 2015. Learn more about Yulia Dianova. Connect with Axia on Twitter @axiapr or tell us what you think in the comments below.
Featured image credit: 123rf.com