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When your speech or presentation isn’t delivered with one very specific person in mind then it will sound like the safety message that you hear every time you board an airplane. Do you tune into that? Nope, me neither. But it’s an important message.
Just like yours.
So how do you do you reach your would-be fans with your message? It’s simple: talk to the passenger next to you not the whole plane!
Think of your presentation, speech or webinar as a conversation between you and one specific person you know well. It’s counterintuitive, but it works!
When you try to speak to everyone, it actually makes your tone of voice sound automated and rehearsed. I call it “tour guide voice.”
Instead, think of one person you know and talk to that person. It could be your best friend, cousin or neighbor (the one you like).
Doing this will change the words you emphasize and your tone of voice will be personal and warm. Your audience – virtually everyone in your audience – will feel an emotional connection to you. Your speech to 100 or 1 million people morphs from a lecture to a conversation. And that’s when you’ve captured hearts and minds.
BONUS: This will help with those nutty nerves that pop up when you’re in front of an audience too. Talking to your friend doesn’t make you nervous, right?
While you’re talking, try adding pauses around specific words or sentences – you know the ones that are at the heart of your message. The ones that cause people to go “REALLY?” and “AHA!” Pausing before or after them will “shine the spotlight” on them.
However, use pauses sparingly! Don’t. pause. after. every. sentence. Examples of this bad habit? President Obama and Captain James T. Kirk. It’s not conversational. Your message gets chopped up, your point is pureed and your content? Crushed.
These two small ingredients blended with your amazing content will whip up an experience that whets your audience’s appetite for more!