So, you have an amazing product (idea or message) you want to share with the world. You know the world needs what you have to offer but you’re afraid that when you stand up to speak, you’ll hear sniggers, laughter or worse still, tumbleweed.
The good news is you’re not alone. According to The Mental Health Institute around 73% of the population would rather DIE than speak in public!
The bad news is this fear of speaking to your audience, (i.e., potential clients or customers), means you lose money making and business building opportunities.
Public speaking opportunities, like guesting on podcasts, presenting to a networking group or standing on a stage at a conference or trade show are fantastic ways to develop your personal brand and get your business known.
They position you as the go-to person in your industry. You become trusted and credible. You make connections which lead to sales.
And there are hidden benefits too. The more you speak, the better you will get, and the more opportunities will come your way.
Your confidence will grow and when you are confident you become like a magnet, you attract people (potential clients) to you.
Better still, with the right story – your story – they will be people that relate to you, want to listen to you and be part of your community.
Eventually, they buy from you and become advocates for your brand.
Learn to speak with confidence!
Building your speaking confidence and creating engaging content takes a bit of work but the benefits to your brand visibility make it worth the effort.
The ability to share your message with an audience is an incredible marketing tool.
So where do you start?
Well, first you need to BELIEVE what you are saying. Sounds simple enough but so many people talk about the WHAT, i.e., the product the THING and so don’t make an emotional connection with their audience. They say what they think the audience want to hear which might not be what they believe.
Remember, if you don’t believe what you’re saying your audience won’t either and when you aren’t committed to your message because you don’t really believe it you will mumble and stumble. You’ll be nervous, waiting to be caught out.
Why is storytelling important.
People buy from people, so tell your customers why they should buy from you. Tell them a story. One from your own experience that will resonate and relate to them, perhaps validate their own experience.
You are your USP – unique, and it’s your story that makes you that way, so, knowing your motivation for sharing your story, and who you are speaking to, will enable you to know what and how much of it to share.
We all have a story – in fact we have many! Happy ones, sad ones, funny ones. Stories engage, educate, and entertain. They showcase your personality, and build trust, and rapport with your customers. For a deeper dive into why your story is important have a read of my blog The Power and Benefit of Telling Your Story.
There is a reason Brene Brown has had over 60 million views of her 20-minute 2010 TED talk. She delivers her presentation with authority and humour, sharing personal stories that make her relatable and demonstrate her point perfectly.
So be authentic. Be you. Your audience want you to show up with personality.
And breathe… so important!
To control Box breathing. Close your eyes and visualise you’re lying on a beautiful, sandy beach. It’s warm and you can hear the calming sound of the waves as they flow towards you, pause, and then retreat. Follow them with your breath. Breathe in for the count of 4, hold for 4. Breathe out for the count of 4, hold for 4. Repeat 3 or 4 times.
Diaphragmatic or belly breathing.
Practice this technique to help support your voice, add depth and resonance. Speech is physical and requires not only the diaphragm but abdominals, intercostal and vocal cords, all muscles that need a regular workout. For a demonstration of this technique take a look at my Breathe video.
And lastly… BE prepared.
Who is your audience?
Do your research. Why are they there? Why should they care about what you have to say? How do you want them to feel and what do you want them to do?
Remember it’s not about you, it’s about them. They are the hero, you are YODA.
Practise, practice, practise… There’s no getting away from it.
Use all the 5 elements of your voice for variety. See Barbara MacAfee’s TEDx talk. She explains how to do this beautifully.
Then, once you feel like you’ve got it nailed present it to another human being, preferably one that loves you (or at least likes you.) It will quieten some of the nerves and it’s also an opportunity to get some constructive feedback.
Before you step on that stage, in front of the mic or camera, take 10 or 15 minutes to relax. Go for a walk, meditate, do some yoga. Practice your breathing.
Take time to VISUALISE everything going right. Say positive affirmations and power pose. Feel tall, strong, and authoritative. It’s all in the mind and body.
More importantly, embrace the nerves. They show you care. The adrenaline you feel is your power and excitement and actually, the feeling you get when you are nervous is the same as the feeling you get when you are excited.
You can read more about the 3 B’s (Believe, Breathe and Be Prepared) in my free download.
And so, to wrap up…
Presenting your story with excitement, confidence, and authority, enables you to create Impact, builds your Influence and ability to inspire those who matter.
But you may need help…
With coaching you will learn skills, techniques and a self-awareness that will elicit respect, authority, and trust from those around you. You’ll develop your personal brand and brand values that clear, succinct, relevant, and authentic.
You will develop the power to speak to your audience.
If you would like to book a discovery call with me to see how we could work together get in touch.