As a regular speaker at conferences and events around the world, I’m often asked what are some tips for maximizing the value of speaking engagements. Here are my 3 top tips to leverage your speaking engagements:
1. Wow your audience
Don’t skimp on your PowerPoint time. Bullet points are rarely going to impress anyone. Do things differently. Leverage unique imagery, PowerPoint “smart art”, etc. Want to get really creative? Learn how to use Prezi.com for your presentations. Over the past 2 years, most of my presentations have been created with Prezi. It takes some learning, but if you get good at creating a Prezi you’ll knock your audience’s socks off.
2. Use identifying bookends
Start your presentation with a slide about yourself and your company. Leave it on the screen for a few seconds longer than feels comfortable. End your presentation with the same slide. Include links to your social presence and your email address to give people simple access to connect after your speaking engagement.
3. Don’t be a robot
No one wants to hear you speak. They want to learn. Make your presentations engaging. You don’t need to impress people with your verbose language. Speak simply and clearly. Early on in my speaking career, I’d always make sure I had an industry friend in the room of my speaking engagements and I would simple present to them. It’s easier to be yourself when you’re pretending to just be talking to someone you know.