Public speaking scares the living daylights out of something like, oh… 99.999% of the population! So if you are part of that special group of people who are brave enough to pursue or accept a gig in the first place, you’re already ahead of the game, my friends.
But accepting speaking engagements isn’t the same as actually being on stage now is it? Here’s a handful of quick tips that’ll help get this right both before and during your presentation so that you can rock that stage like a pro. Yes. today, we’re talking about how to prepare for a speaking gig!
Start off by doing something weird backstage. Not too long ago, there was a lot of buzz about doing the Wonder Woman pose before hitting the stage, in private of course as it infused people with all sorts of confidence and authority, which helped them perform better when they got out on stage.
In fact, almost every successful speaker I know has SOME kind of ritual they do before going onstage. Some have a prayer or mantra they say, others listen to the same song each time. Find something that both energizes you and calms you down, and make it part of your pre-show ritual.
Don’t Forget to Hydrate!
Now the air inside most venues is dry, and if you haven’t done a lot of speaking before, you may not be used to how the air can affect your voice over a long presentation. Bring something right up on stage with you to eliminate any embarrassing coughing fits – a bottle of room temperature water is my jam on this one!
Eyes on the Prize
Next, let’s talk about the audience. Being on stage can be intoxicating. You may want to make incredible statements that apply to everyone in the room, however your talk will be a lot more impactful if you make repeated eye contact with just a few people, and speak directly to them. This will not only make the experience feel more like a conversation than an Official Presentation, but it’ll have the added bonus of making your audience nod along in agreement as you go. Try it… it REALLY works.
Keep the Conversation Going
And lastly, don’t forget to keep the conversation going after your talk. Your audience is there to hear you speak and learn more about you, so do them the favor of making it easy for them to find you after the presentation is over. At the very least, add a finishing slide to your presentation, with your social handles and website. If you want to take it up a notch, add a special bonus offer for anyone who was there to see you live, that focuses on creating even MORE value, and converting them onto your email list at the same time!
When you think about how to prepare for a speaking gig, some of these tips might pop into your head, some might not. Either way, I reckon that, with ’em in hand, you’ll be pretty much ready to take the stage by storm… and take your brand to the next level.
One last tip for you: have fun up there! There’s nothing better than being center stage, with a captivated audience in front of you, it’s an incredible feeling!