Techie Tuesday: A Rockstar Presenter’s Mash-up

We’ve been discussing public speaking for about a week now and it’s amazing how far it has gone in the blogosphere. Not only did the presentation techniques post bring us to a discussion of phobias, it got included in several mash-ups and an online paper called “Calculated Presentations.”

How fun is that?

I think the traction came from the fact that presenting is a deep topic. It’s scary and it’s hard for many people to do.  For writers who want to promote books (either now or in the future), it is *gulp* necessary.

In an effort to gather more data for all of you, I started reading up on everything speaker-ish (yes, I know that’s not a real word). It’s amazing how many posts there are on this!

Below are 10 posts that relate to the process, whether it’s getting started, attending conferences, presenting a topic, speaking faux pas, or staying perky after traveling.

  1. Kristen Lamb’s hilarious tale of woe about attending her first conference and suffering from an unfortunate food-allergy experience.
  2. 10 Kick Ass Presentation Techniques: Profanity? Yes. Good advice? YES.
  3. 10 Tips to Being a Better Presenter: All true (even the podium) … Warning: his tone is a little preachy.
  4. Video: Use Index Cards and Other Tips for Public Speaking – I just like to watch Peter Meyers talk.
  5. Ever wonder who the 5 Highest Paid Public Speakers are?
  6. Who was the Fastest Public Speaker back in 1961? (Guess before clicking!)
  7. Mr. Media Training compiles 6 Media Disaster Videos – I’ll bet you laugh. 🙂
  8. If you’re into Dale Carnegie, here is a free guide to Speaking More Effectively
  9. Hundreds of articles on Public Speaking from expert Patricia Fripp. (Awesome!)
  10. As a previous 100,000 mile a year road warrior, THIS guy says it all. His tips for travel would serve anyone going to a conference (or on a promotional tour) so well!

Last of all, I’ll leave you with the bonus prize — a summary of the following rockstar article (click the 1+4 title to go to the blog). It was from a site called Tattoos Tips (yes, really). With a dark background and light font, it is a very hard read, so I’ll just give you the gist. I’d love to tell this author how awesome he is – this is a GREAT post!

1 + 4 = Successful Public Speaking

This gentleman emphasizes that he has “found a simple formula that if followed can ensure your success.” (I think he might be right!)

The Big One

  •  As all of the above links will tell you – KNOW YOUR CONTENT. Know it inside out and backwards so that you can be interrupted 14 times and still return to your point.
  • Less is more. If you slow down and present the information verbally and visually, your group will achieve a greater understanding.

Point #1 – Focus On Your Voice

  • A monotone voice will put your audience to sleep.  You must experiment with modulating your voice, the pitch of it, the speed you talk and how you emphasize your information.
  • Pause to create an effect.  A pause is uncomfortable for the listener and causes them to become alert and psychologically want you to continue.
  • Talk in a clear, crisp voice and project out to your audience so everyone can hear what you have to say.
  • Walk around the stage if that is comfortable for you and the speech is not formal.
  • An excellent tool is a tape recorder.  Record yourself and listen.  Do you use any ha-a-a-’s ?  Do you stumble in areas?  Where can you add excitement to your information by raising your voice or pausing?

Point #2 – Using Your Physical Presence

  • The second thing is your physical presence and how you use it.  We are not always aware of how we are communicating through our body.
  • Your expression, your gestures, your stance, posture, movement all tell your audience things about either you as a person or the subject you are speaking on.  Make sure it is saying what you want to project.
  • Watch people and observe what they are doing.  Watch television or a movie with the sound turned off and figure out what is happening.  A good speaker would probably be a good actor as well.
  • A tool that helps is a video recording.  In component one you listened without seeing.  Now you will watch yourself without hearing and observe.
  • Rehearse your talk over and over until it is second nature.

Point #3 – The “Goodies

  • The “goodies” are the little stories, jokes and antidotes you will use to enrich your speech.  They wake up an audience starting to nod off, build a rapport with your audience and convey information in a way that can be easier to understand.
  • Collect these for the time when you might use them.  He gets many of his jokes via email.

Point #4 – Media

  • The last piece, which helps bring everything together is media. This ties back to last week’s post on presentation tips.
  • Media can be anything from a picture of your cat (if it is cute and relevant to the topic), a PowerPoint slide show, a movie clip or even a recording of someone famous quoting something.  It adds interest and changes the pace of your speech, adding freshness.

If you add all of these pieces to your speech you are sure to be a successful speaker.  Something that helped this blogger was to take a public speaking program.  You can find reviews online to help you select the best one for you.

Unless something with even more Rockstar Potential comes across my screen, this is the last post on presentations for a good long while.

What do you think? Which one of the links and resources above is your favorite? I have two particular ones but I want to see what you think.

Happy Tuesday!

About Jenny Hansen

Avid seeker of "more"...More words, more creativity, More Cowbell! An extrovert who's terribly fond of silliness. Founding blogger at Writers In The Storm ( Write on!
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9 Responses to Techie Tuesday: A Rockstar Presenter’s Mash-up

  1. Linda Burke says:

    Favorites? #1 and the I+4. But then #10 gives practical advice – not on speaking – but on being physically able to speak. They were all good. I agree, Peter Meyers speaks really well. Thanks for all the links.


  2. amyshojai says:

    For me, it’s always helpful to have a LIVE dog or cat (I guess as opposed to a dead one, LOL!) especially on TV. Folks look at the pet and that takes the pressure off.


  3. Stacy Green says:

    I think the Goodies are the most important part, at least from a listener’s perspective. Those are the things that not only keep my attention but make me feel connected to the presenter.


  4. K.B. Owen says:

    Great post, Jenny! When I was teaching, I found myself using a lot of these tips. One pet peeve of mine, that I always avoided doing myself: don’t read the slides word-for-word on the powerpoint presentation! That just sets my teeth on edge when I see someone do that. I am capable of reading, thank you very much. In fact, the “less is more” philosophy applies here: put just a few key points in writing on the slide, then talk more in-depth while the slide is up.

    Ok, done ranting! Thanks, Jenny.


    • Jenny Hansen says:

      That’s a pretty darn good rant. I get irked when someone reads to me. I used to like to have people just put the book away and check out software. The book can be for later, when you want to practice without me. 🙂


  5. Whatever works is helpful! If I knew then what I knew now, I would’ve done a lot better in speaking/Speech and Debate, and public speaking in general. 🙂


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