How to Present Yourself as the Trusted Voice in Your Field
After being in the business as long as I have – I live and breathe public speaking. It’s become a fundamental part of what I do, and I can’t stress enough how important it is for business owners to master. An artform, it can be perfected, contrary to popular belief. And I’d love to share with you a few crucial points that will aid you in getting your audience eating out of you hand, and getting the leads you want.
Firstly, it’s important that you present your ideas in a confident manner. This can come with time of course, especially if you’re new to public speaking. In a nutshell though, the better you know your topic, and the more passionately you feel about it, the more likely you’ll present yourself as the trusted expert. If you’re unsure of your subject, and you stumble in your delivery, you’ll risk falling flat and getting lost in the noise of the audience, an audience more likely to get distracted by their smartphone than listen to a presentation that is less than 100% engaging.
You’ll need to be likeable, believable and passionate in your delivery. Yes, anxiety can get the best of anyone, but if you channel this into becoming excited about what you have to offer your audience, your performance will be impressive and injected with life. Remember, you’re the expert here, and you’re being listened to because that’s what your audience already believe before they walk into the room. You’ve just got to mentally prepare yourself to give it your all, and show them what you’ve got to offer.
I’ve noticed a big mistake in the past, and that’s speakers that are so prepared and rehearsed that their delivery is unnatural and robotic. Basically, if you’re not yourself in your presentation, you won’t come across as authentic and your audience won’t buy what you’re offering. They won’t trust you to be their go-to – in fact they’ll be unlikely to take much notice of you at all. In order for you to succeed in delivering a successful performance, you’ll need to be yourself. Deliver with passion and this passion will become infectious.
When you’re practising your presentation, it’s a good idea to record a practice run, so you can listen back to discover how you sound. Do you speak unnaturally fast? Is your voice quite monotone, and could benefit with some variation? Do you use a few too many fillers, like ‘um’ and ‘er’? As humans, we’re our own biggest critics, so you’ll always find room for improvement. If you’re a natural rambler, remember, we have a twenty minute attention span, so once you start running away with yourself, unfortunately it may only be you that’s listening by the end. If it helps, try and give your presentation a memorable structure, not only to help your flow but to help the audience remember your key messages once they’ve left!
Another good idea is to tell stories in your presentation. Humans are programmed to like hearing stories. According to research, they are 22 times more memorable that pure facts – think of the inspirational TED Talks you know and love! You can make what you’re offering easy to digest through a concise, engaging story. Think about how you’d like to receive the information you’ve got – what would get you to act?
So, in a few words…
Know your stuff
Vary your voice tone
Speak with passion
And naturally, as is the case with most things, time helps. If you’re new to presentations, you’ll look back at yourself in a few months and wonder what you were worrying about!
Not everyone is born a public speaker, but you can train yourself to be one. Knowing and being passionate about your project is the foundation to your success – start with that.
If you need further help with mastering your message, click here to find out how Elite Room could help you become the in-demand speaker in your industry on the 1st-2nd March.