Halloween is this weekend and with it comes scary stories, fright nights, and a lot of things you don’t see every day. It’s the one time of the year that ghosts and goblins can come out of their hiding places. Since they only make one public appearance a year, they like to make it count and offer some valuable insights into the realm of public speaking – what works and what doesn’t.
Eating brains does not translate into a warm and friendly greeting to your guests.
Instead, arrive at your event about an hour early and shake hands instead of eating brains—oops, I mean breakfast. Introduce yourself and find out more about what brought people to see you speak and what they would like to know more about.
Be transparent and friendly.
Standing up in front of a group of people can be intimidating. It will help you as the speaker to relax along with your participants if you are humorous, friendly, and open with your audience.
Don’t be afraid to dazzle with a little magic.
Unless you are presenting in Salem, MA, somewhere between 1692 and 1693, your audience would probably like a little flash and dazzle. Since you only have about two minutes to grab their attention and keep them interested for the whole presentation, don’t be afraid to open the presentation with a splash.
Don’t walk like a robot.
Frankenstein makes an excellent point about the importance of being able to move fluidly around the stage. When you move, you’re forcing audience members to pay attention and notice you. Otherwise, you’re just going to be a droning and unmoving piece of furniture on the stage. The more comfortable you are with being in front of a group, the better.
Give them something to sink their teeth into.
In the end, if you’re not talking about something that matters, you’re not going to get a great response. Be sure that the content of your presentation or topic is relevant and intriguing, and offer clear ways for your participants to be involved during and after the presentation.
Hope you enjoyed that insight from the people who know what it’s like to make one public appearance a year. You have to come out swinging; otherwise, you’ll end up six feet under.
Have a safe and happy Halloween!