For many of us, public speaking can be a daunting prospect. This is mainly because we don’t really have to speak to an audience that often, perhaps the occasional wedding, dinner party or company function.
However, speaking at business events can be a fantastic way of marketing your services. You only have to attend a couple of networking events to see that those who are most confident in speaking and presenting their ideas grab the lions share of attention. And those that take the step up to presenting in front of an audience, are frequently those tied up with questions from prospects and partners during conference lunch breaks.
There are lots of reasons why you should consider public speaking for your marketing programmes. Here’s a few to get you started:
1. to develop your profile as an expert,
2. to increase your sales and partner network,
3. to gain FREE publicity in industry press and journals,
4. to reach targeted audiences,
5. to raise awareness of your company and its products / services.
And many more.
But you need to be clear about what you want to achieve before you get started. As with any marketing & PR programme, careful planning at the outset can increase the impact of your campaign. For example, do you want to reach companies that might be potential customers, or would you like to influence the investment community to help raise finance? Both can be achieved with careful planning, good research and a proactive approach to finding opportunities to speak.
Once you’ve started to secure speaking opportunities, you need to ensure you can deliver an effective presentation. For this, there’s no substitute for training and practice and more you do it the better you’ll get. Don’t be put off by nerves the first few times, this really will improve with time. There are lots of resources for speaking tips, just search on Google or visit your local book shop and you’ll find numerous.
If you want help identifying speaking opportunities, then you can engage a speakers bureau to do some of this work for you – although these mainly support celebrities or well known business gurus. If you want help for your business, then either contact me or your PR agency who may be able to help.?