Public speaking is one way in which you can produce extra attention for your brand. Even without potential customers seeing your presentation, you’ll be able to use speaking events as huge PR opportunities.
Learn how to secure public speaking opportunities and how to make the best out of these in this blog post.
Why Should You Consider Public Speaking?
Public speaking has huge benefits for those who can secure a spot. The first is that it establishes credibility for you and your brand. The second is that it allows you to market your brand and attach it to a prestigious event – giving you extra, reliable exposure.
It should be noted public speaking is not easy, though. Obtaining a speaking place can be very difficult and presenting in front of an audience of potentially hundreds (or even thousands) can be daunting, even for the most confident person.
However, those who are able to create a memorable speech can expect to see a huge return for their business.
How To Obtain A Public Speaking Spot
Obtaining a public speaking spot is not as simple as phoning up industry conference organisers and asking if they have a place. Most conferences will have a limited number of spots available and it is likely they will have a long list of potential speakers.
The only ones who may have an easy time are veterans, those who have spoken successfully at conferences many times before.
To start the process, identify exactly what conferences you think you could contribute something to. Create a database and include the event, when their next two conferences are being held and when submissions for speakers are to be made.
Next you need to create a detailed speaker submission. Creating a submission can take a lot of hard work and you should put aside a few days for this. You’ll want to create a topic which has several marketable attributes to it:
- It has a catchy subject line or premise.
- It has actionable or high value advice in it.
- It is not self-promotional.
- It is something that you can claim to be highly proficient in.
Once you have created the proposals and sent them off you can only wait for responses. Sometimes you may be contacted to give more details; be friendly and talk them through your ideas but not the whole speech.
Ask for and listen to feedback carefully: they might give you some advice which can support you in future applications whatever the result of the current applications.
Always remember to correspond quickly with organisers. Even a thank you note for considering your application can support you in the future if you’ve not been selected. Too many opportunities are lost because businesses don’t respond quickly enough or fail to show appreciation for the time of event organisers.
Tips For A Great Speech
When you’ve been accepted you’ll want to prepare fully for the event. Being in front of potentially hundreds of delegates is very nerve-wracking. Being prepared is the best defence.
Start with practicing your speech. Steve Jobs practiced solidly for two days before presenting. You need to put in as much preparation. Try practicing your speech two to three times a day for two weeks before the event. At the beginning of the practicing you’ll want to have notes and be in a quiet space. As you become more confident take away your notes. As a final step practice in an area that has some distractions.
The last step is very important because being on stage is not like practicing in your home or office. There will be distractions throughout your presentation and you need to be able to cope with them without losing your focus. You also don’t want to have your notes as this can seem unprofessional and make it look like you’ve not rehearsed.
Remember to control your hand gestures. Although some movement is positive, too much movement can be distracting for your audience. Don’t cross your arms as this is a defensive posture and reduces the uptake of your message. The same can be said about standing behind a podium.
Instead walk slowly around the stage keeping eye contact with your audience. Use gentle hand gestures which are comfortable without being too animated.
The final tip is not to rely too much on a PowerPoint presentation. In fact, a badly designed PowerPoint presentation can be a huge distraction for your audience and they will not take in what you have said.
Marketing With Public Speaking
The biggest benefit with public speaking is the additional marketing you can derive from the event. As soon as you have been confirmed as a speaker you should create and distribute a press release to announce the booking. You should also announce the news on your blog, social media and email lists.
At all times include links to the booking page of the conference you are speaking at. They will appreciate this and possibly promote you to their followers.
When you are at the conference tweet live updates about your day, include acknowledgement for other speakers and how you are feeling. Be sure to find the hashtag for the event because tweeting while at conferences is very popular and it might encourage people to attend your speech or interact over twitter.
Have the event recorded and then upload the video to YouTube. Promote the video online so that those who could not attend can still view what you had to say. It is also a good method to establish more authority in your industry by providing concrete evidence you have presented at a leading industry conference.
Also remember to send a thank you note to the organisers and state you will be looking forward to sending a proposal in the following year.
Public speaking is a good marketing tactic for establishing credibility and authority within your industry. It can be tough getting started, but once you have an application accepted you have an opportunity to increase the expansion of your business. Remember to have a strong application and promote your public speaking spot before, during and after the event.
- Make a note of all the conferences which are applicable to your industry.
- Create a list of topics you could talk about at each and submit an application.
- Practice your speech until you know it off by heart.
- Promote your public speaking spot.
- Upload a recording of your speech to YouTube after the event.