Speaking is essential to grow your business.
Speaking in public is essential to grow your business.
Speaking in public is one of the most stressful things a business women can do, or so they tell me. Being terrified of speaking in public is one of those things that so many people feel, and they will avoid it at all costs. But as a woman in business, you need to be speaking. You need to be shouting from the rooftops about what you do. You may need to speak to a small group or to a large audience, online or off. Whatever it is you need to be speaking about your business and what you do. We live in a world where Video is essential on your website and on social media and you need to be confident to do this. In today’s marketing, it is not just speaking live to a group of people, it is speaking online that is important. Speaking is a part of your brand and shows the personality of your business.
There are reasons that people get scared. Often it is because they just don’t know what to say, or they feel they will forget what they are going to say. For some, it is the fact that everyone is looking at them. It tends to happen that people look at you when you stand at the front of a room to talk to a group of people. You are in the spotlight, everyone looking at you and waiting for you to be amazing. The thing is you don’t feel amazing and your own mind monkeys get in the way. An audience is mostly very nice. They are not there to make you feel stupid or to trick you in any way. They want to listen to you. They have made a point of coming to hear you speak.
For some people the thought of speaking in public makes them physically sick, they would rather jump in front of a train than stand on a stage and speak about their business. The thing is, if you are a one woman band, like a lot of my clients, there is no one else who can speak about your business the way you can. No one will have the passion and insight into your business that you possess and no one can tell others what you do in the way you can.
I work with so many people who don’t know how to tell people what they do. They struggle with getting their message across to people. If you know exactly what you do, it will be so much easier to speak to others. You will speak from your heart using words and phrases that resonate with your ideal client. Words that work like magic as people will understand exactly what it is you can do for them. By knowing what problem you solve, you can attract clients that want to work with you.
Once you know how to tell people what you do, you cannot forget when you are telling people. I have clients who say – “I might forget what I have to say”. If you know your stuff, you cannot forget it. Knowing your subject inside and out is essential to make speaking to a group of people easier. I am always amazed how some people think they can get up and speak without knowing everything there is to know about their subject.
Another thing that people say is ‘I will wing it’. No wonder you are terrified of speaking if you have not prepared. Preparation is key to being a great speaker. Good speakers can wing it, but great speakers never do. Great speakers understand what they need to do and make sure they are prepared.
The things you need to understand to master the art of public speaking are:
Message – you have to have a clear and simple message for your audience. No matter the length of the speech, whether it is a 60-second pitch or a 40-minute keynote speech, you need to know the key message you want to give. The key message should be clear in the whole of your speech or presentation.
Audience – knowing who you are talking to will help you understand what you want to tell them. Find out who your audience are likely to be. Where will they be coming from, why are they there? This step is almost always missed out when preparing a speech. You cannot give a clear message if you do not know who you are talking to. Ask whoever is hosting the event, who is coming and why they are there.
Structure – get the structure right. Make sure you have a good beginning, a sound main body of information and a clear conclusion with a call to action. If you have a good structure, you area able to follow your speech in your head, equally the audience can follow it too. No one who is a good speaker, speaks without understanding the structure of their talk.
Thoughts – Change the way you think about speaking in public. Stop telling yourself you are terrified of it and change the way you think. Change the way your mind monkeys talk. Tell yourself you can do it. You may not mean it to start with, but eventually, you will believe it and you may even begin to enjoy it.
Experience – Keep doing it. Speak in public as much as possible to get experience and practice. All great speakers have been doing it for years, so they should be good. But we all started somewhere and the more experienced you get the less terrified you will be. Join a speaking club to get more practice and experience. Offer to do a 5 minute when you go networking. Get as much practice as you can. You will realise that no matter how nervous you get beforehand, it all goes away once you start.
Results – What do you want your audience to do. People need to be told. Your message and your call to action should result in your listeners doing something, or feeling something. Make sure you know what result you want. No one wants to waste their time and if you do not know what you want your audience to do you are wasting your time, and if you do not tell the audience what they need to do, you are wasting their time.
Public speaking is a job. You as the speaker have a job to do and your job is to raise awareness of your business or services. You are there to give information to people who want to know what it is you have to say. In other words, GET OVER YOURSELF, it is not about you, it is about what you can give to your audience. It is about how you can help people who are listening to you. Change that mindset and you will find it so much easier to speak in public.
Make public speaking a part of your marketing plan. Create a strategy to ensure you speak whenever you can and get your message across to people. Speaking with confidence will help you grow your business, it will increase the trust people have in you and allow you to show your personality and passion in what you do. Don’t avoid the opportunities to speak, just make sure you speak with confidence and clarity.
Bev Hepting @ Discover your Voice – Inspiring you to speak with confidence and clarity to grow your business