Step 3: Speaking Tools To Wow Your Audience

Welcome back to the series on 5 steps to become a confident speaker. In the series so far, I have discussed

5 important steps to become a confident speaker

Step 1: how to get started on becoming a confident speaker

Step 2: How to prepare for an impressive speech

Today’s post covers one of my favourite parts of the series, an aspect of speaking skills that can actually set you apart from your peers. I have speaking tools you can use to wow your audience. Compare a boring presentation where the speaker goes on and one where the speaker starts with a magic trick!! I’m just kidding but you get the point, right? Which one of these do you think will be more memorable? Let’s look at a few that can work like magic, no less! 

1. QUESTIONS: Something as simple as show of hands or a agree/disagree question is a great tool to use. This also serves to bring people mentally to the present moment. It can used at the beginning a speech or somewhere in the middle when the audience focus begins to waver.

2. ANALOGIES AND METAPHORS: These tools work best to explain complex concepts. You could use them when you want to simplify how your product works by comparing it to something that the audience can relate to. Here’s a great piece on using analogies and metaphors.

3. STATISTICS: By 2017, 3.5 billion people, which is half the world population will be on the internet. Staggering numbers make for an impactful beginning to a presentation.

4. JAW DROPPING MOMENTSDid you know that Bill Gates actually released mosquitoes at the beginning of his TED talk on malaria? And to this day, we remember this jaw dropping moment from his talk that made it memorable. You don’t have to do something so drastic! Incredible statistics could jolt members of the audience. An unconventional delivery could make people sit up. Look at what Darren Tay, the world champion of public speaking 2016 did in his winning speech! 

5. POWER OF THREE: This is one of the simplest tools to use. You can build it into the structure of your presentation and use it as reference points during your talk. It’ll make it easy for the audience to understand and remember it too. There is an entire post and video that I did on how to use the power of three to make your communication more effective.

6. HUMOUR: One of the best ways to diffuse the stress in a speaking situation, blow open people’s defences and connect with the audience. Although, humour can get quite tricky and need some practice to work well. Jokes coloured with gender of racial stereotypes might not go down well anywhere. Plus, you should be able to able to carry it off with confidence.

7. STORY TELLING: This tool is as ancient as mankind. Our ancestors gathered around bonfires and narrated their experience in the wild. And thus stories appeal to our basic instincts. In the modern setting, stories add Pathos (emotions) to Logos (Logic) Like Brené Brown said, “Stories are data with a soul”, you can add life to boring presentations through stories. They could be personal stories, anecdotes, parables – whatever suits the audience and the situation.

8. SUMMARISE: Something as simple as clearly outlining your speech can also set you apart. Most work presentations tend to get boring and most listeners have no clue where you are going. It is very important for the audience to know where they are going with you and they will willingly come along.

You don’t need to use all these tools all the time. Begin with what works for you and try out new things once in a while if they can improve your presentations. There are many more tools that you can learn to set yourself apart.

If you want to add pizzazz to your speech and make them stand out, I can help you:

– Help you match tools to your delivery style

– Learn 15 brilliant tools to wow your audience

– Help you write speeches with these tools in mind

– Inject life into boring everyday presentations

– Practice tools of your choice till you can deliver them with confidence

If you wish to take your speaking skills to the next level, drop me a line and I can schedule a free 20 minute discovery session to discuss your needs.

The next post is going to be about the actual delivery for the speech – the moment of truth when all the elements of your presentation will come together. Till next week….

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