Being able to pitch your business and work up a crowd is a key skill for any entrepreneur, so here’s how to master it
Few of us feel comfortable presenting in front of an audience without significant practice. Yet public speaking is often necessary when it comes to boosting your business profile. Being able to communicate your brand effectively can make all the difference to how your business is perceived, both by potential investors, prospective clients, peers, colleagues and by the general public. So, mastering this skill is important when it comes to running an organisation.
With that in mind, we’ve put together this guide with the top tips you need to improve your public speaking skills. From practicing presentations to keeping informal pitches concise and simple, here’s everything you need to know.
Practice, practice, practice
The best way to get started in the world of public speaking is to simply practice. If you want to jump in at the deep end, you can sign up to other public speaking opportunities to get started, or you can seek out smaller opportunities first. Giving a talk at a local club or networking event is a good stepping stone. Alternatively, look to flex your oratorial skills away from the business world – perhaps by becoming a volunteer guide at a local event or joining a theatre group. Even a book club can provide a great opportunity to collect your thoughts and convey a message to others. Whatever you go for, this is your chance to get used to the sound of your own voice, and start commanding attention.
As well as practicing speaking yourself, you should also gain some inspiration from others around you. We learn a huge amount simply by listening and watching others perform the kinds of tasks we want to master, so take some time to attend other public speaking events and listen to the masters at work. It doesn’t really matter what subject matters these speeches tackle, as you should be focusing less on the content and more on how the speakers are delivering their words. Jot down any useful phrases, mannerisms or ideas you notice – whether it’s a TED Talk, the next Apple launch or business workshop.
Train your voice
Simply using your voice is a good way to get started in public speaking. After all, ‘speaking’ is half the equation. Word games, tongue twisters and vocal warm ups are all easy ways to improve the accuracy and clarity of your speech, and you could even hire a vocal coach to gain extra confidence. This will help you prepare for speaking in front of a crowd.
Do a dress rehearsal
As well as practicing speaking in general, you should also do a few rehearsals of the speech you plan on delivering. Perform your speech in front of family, friends, trusted colleagues and maybe even a professional speaking coach. Not only will this get you more accustomed to delivering your speech, but you’ll also get constructive feedback on both your content and performance that you can put into practice before the big day.
Try to keep it simple
It’s often said that if you can’t explain your area of expertise to a five-year-old, you don’t know it well enough. In other words, you should be able to simplify your content to get to the true essence of what you’re trying to say. Always bear in mind exactly what you’re trying to get across, and cut down any jargon or waffle which is diverting from it. Follow a simple structure and use plain language in order to get your message across. This will also make the actual task of public speaking seem less frightening, as your content will be more natural and less scripted.
Looking to get your brand noticed?
The team at TEDCO Business Support has helped thousands of businesses to start up, supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), don’t be afraid to ask us for help.
Get in touch with our team today to see how we can help you. Give us a call on 0191 516 61 02 or drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org