5 Ways to Speak At Live Events Like A Professional
How to start public speaking at live events.
5 ways to get onstage like a professional.
There’s a steep learning curve between wanting to speak and actually speaking. Getting started like a professional means you need to treat your speeches like prepping for an acting role or a movie.
I know, I know. You’re not an actor. You might even be an introvert. And it LOOKS like those speakers are completely winging it onstage.
I’m going to level with you, I don’t hear many great speakers. Those speakers think they’re great at “winging it,” they really are just mediocre.
If you’ve built a brand, if your business has clout and credibility, you can’t wing the stage thing. One bad speech at a major event can cause your brand’s image to slip.
Please don’t do that. Public speaking is simple, but not easy.
You’ll need to do prep-work before you ever get to any event.
If you’ve ever been onstage in a play before, even if you just played the Lobster in your 3rd-grade stage play, you know about a rehearsal process.
Being both an onstage actor, stage manager, and director, I wore plenty of hats when it came to getting onstage and making sure things ran smoothly.
Stage managers are in charge of getting the actors to rehearsals, taking notes for the director, coordinating the costumes, lights, sound, and keeping up with stage directions and script line readings for actors.
Directors are in charge of giving the stage directions and helping the actors find the right tone and delivery.
Your box office and marketing team help you by setting expectations in the playbill. Your actors’ bio and other info are already provided to the audience.
You don’t have a team helping you get ready to speak, (although you should, more about that later.)
Speaking is more than just writing a speech. Brilliant public speakers rehearse the delivery. Steve Jobs rehearsed each big Apple announcement over and over, until the lighting and sound, the delivery and his stage presence were perfect.
The results; Steve Jobs appeared confident, spontaneous, and his delivery captivated audiences.
But now you know, Steve didn’t ever leave anything to chance. He wasn’t spontaneous, he just knew how to prepare.
And you can make speaking seem effortless, too.
Use these 5 tips to help you prepare to get onstage.
Write your speech then read it out loud.
Make sure it sounds good “live.” Tweak the speech until it sounds conversational. You’ll need to make sure the speech fits your brand as well. Is your brand lively and fun? Your speech should reflect that creativity and energy. Is your brand intense and exciting? Speak through that spark and beam the intensity to your audience.
2. Decide on your movements.
Plan how you’ll move on the stage. Move out from behind the podium and block your movements in your mind ahead of time.
3. Decide on an outfit and try it out before the event.
Be sure it reflects your brand and it’s not too tight or too loose. Long dresses make an audience nervous; you might trip and fall. Don’t wear short skirts, for obvious reasons, and anything too tight or too loose will make you uncomfortable.
A word about shoes, if you don’t wear heels all the time, pick a moderate or stacked heel, just in case. Again, you want your audience comfortable, and that means you need to be comfortable, too
4. Have a dress rehearsal.
Invite friends who will be brilliant and honest to give feedback. Have them take notes on the areas they felt the strongest emotions and the areas they were bored to tears. Make sure you tweak the speech, then have them review again. Get your speech perfect BEFORE unveiling it to your event audience.
5. Warm up your audience an hour before your speech.
Arrive early and shake hands, meet people and be friendly. Engage the attendees and ask lots of questions. Be interested in them. If you can remember some of their names, mention them briefly at the beginning of your speech, or insert their names at appropriate places.
So if you don’t have a team to help get you onstage, you can try to go it alone, but all the big speaking names have coaches. All of them. Most also have copywriters, vocal coaches, acting coaches, and messaging coaches. Those speaking pros have mindset life coaches guiding them through stage fright and feeling inadequate. Those speakers have business coaches to help leverage more speaking events, publisher book deals, and book high-end clients.
You might need some help as well.
I give free training weekly on how to go live on Facebook and how to get onstage with power.