If you have ever been asked to speak at the Conde Nast Luxury Conference, then you might be feeling a bit nervous because you want to make sure that everything goes well. From choosing your topic to making sure you deliver your speech in the time allotted, there are many critical factors that you will need to consider before you are ready to speak on stage. Here are four things you should consider as you prepare for the big night:
1. Choosing Your Topic
Deciding what you are going to talk about is probably the most important decision you will make in this whole process. As there are many fashion trends you might consider such as jewelry or menswear, it is going to be very critical that you identify the right topic. So how exactly can you make sure you pick the right one?
The two key questions you must ask yourself is this:
Who is your target audience?
What topic am I an expert at?
Once you have the answers to these questions, then it will be much easier to select your topic.
2. Provide time for interaction
There are very few experts who aren’t willing to ask a question or make a comment on almost any topic imaginable. If you are a speaking to luxury enthusiasts, then remember that fact and provide an opportunity somewhere in your presentation for interaction with the members of the group assembled.
“You will find that more often than not, people are more interested in sharing than in really putting you to the test” says Dan Smith of Keynote Speaker. “While occasionally someone may decide to try you out with a question or two, for the most part people want to share what they know, rather than give you an opportunity to share more of what you know.”
Regardless of whether your audience asks or shares, it’s crucial to allow them to interact. There is nothing more boring for than to be talked at for 45 minutes without a chance to respond or react. An important tip for public speaking is to be certain to allow for give and take with your audience.
3. Use handouts
Another important factor is to make certain to use handouts. Attendees love to get stuff. We might throw it away as soon as we get home, or sooner, but we usually respond positively to someone giving us something. Your audience may have really enjoyed what you had to say, being able to take a sample of your thoughts and ideas home with them will be seen as a real bonus.
“Handouts are also good tools for you as the speaker” suggests John Rogan of Motivational Speakers. “You can use them as an outline to help you make all of your points. You can refer to them to get people to give attention to a specific point. You can save a copy so that the next time you give a presentation like this you won’t be starting form scratch.”
4. Don’t overstay your welcome
If some public speakers can be faulted, it is more often than not because they extend their remarks beyond the attention span of the group. Put simply, they talk too long. This can be the honest result of the speaker’s real interest in the subject matter or simply his inability to pull his topic together and come to a meaningful conclusion. Either way, when you overstay your welcome it can be unpleasant for you and the audience.
Before you begin any presentation, before you say word one, make sure you know both where you are going and how you are going to get there. The best tip for public speaking is to prepare your closing sentence, put it on the podium in front of you and within a half hour or less, depending on your topic and audience, deliver that sentence. Don’t let wrapping up be your downfall.