How To Be An Inspirational Speaker

The majority of people hate public speaking, but for a lot of jobs, it is a very important skill to have. So if you want to improve your presentation skills and be an inspirational speaker, here are some public speaking tips to keep in mind.

Defining Your Goal

Before making your presentation, it is crucial to define your goal. You want to do this in advance so that you can get rid of any information that does not directly support your goal. Cutting out excess distractions keeps your talk focused and deliberate.

A great basis for defining your goal is to keep your audience in mind. Ask yourself, “What is the change in mentality and behavior I want my audience to have upon the completion of my presentation?” Think about how you will take them from where they are now to where you want them to be. Once you have defined the before-and-after change you wish to see, create your presentation outline encompassing that journey.

Develop Distinctive Content

Now that you have defined your goal, you have to make sure that you develop your content and present it in a way that is distinctive and unique. In simple terms: K.I.S.S.  (Keep It Simple Stupid!)

People long for new concepts but aren’t into long dissertations that have 84 PowerPoint Slides.  

Rarely, someone hasn’t heard something similar to what you may be speaking about.  But what they haven’t heard is your interpretation of the information, your stories, your delivery, your humor. Remember, people would rather be entertained than educated.  But if you can do both, you now have a killer presentation that’s captivating and persuasive.

Figure Out Your Target Audience

Once you develop your distinctive content and outline what you want to say, you will be able to identify who would benefit from hearing your inspirational speaking. How old are the people who need to hear your message? What is their occupation? Where do they live? These are all very important questions to ask yourself when figuring out your target audience.

Also, defining your target audience will help you decide what examples you should use to convey your ideas as successfully as possible. When you understand who your target audience is, you will also be able to figure out where to look for them- for example, a marketing conference or a different industry event.

Note:  Even though we reference “Developing Content” as a step before “Figuring Out Your Target Audience,” it’s perfectly acceptable to reverse this order. Understanding your target audience can help fuel your content!

Obtain Public Speaking Skills

So you have defined your goal, developed distinctive content and figured out your target audience. Now you need to obtain public speaking skills. If you have amazing content but no way to deliver it, then there is no point. The way you communicate your message is so much more important than the words you use.

Even if you believe that you are a superstar speaker already, you most likely have some pretty bad habits (such as swaying back and forth when you talk and using filler words like “um” when you do not know what else to say).

Meet with a public speaking group, sign up for a college communications class, or enlist a speaking coach to help you generate better communication habits. A couple of small adjustments to your execution can make or break your career as an inspirational speaker.

Also, it may be helpful to record yourself while giving a speech and watch it back. It can be very difficult and strange to watch yourself but it is crucial to study your hand gestures, body language, and speaking habits so that you can get better at speaking.

Telling A Story

“Tell me the facts and I’ll learn. Tell me the truth and I’ll believe. But tell me a story and it will live in my heart forever.”

The most successful presentations entwine facts and information with an enthralling story that inspires the audience.

Humans connect with stories. Stories are something that nearly everyone can relate to in some way. Whether they are funny stories, sad stories, inspirational stories, everybody enjoys a good story. Telling a lot of stories will ensure that your audience is captivated and it will also be a lot easier for you to remember.

It is especially important to tell stories based on your own experiences because it will be easier for your audience to place themselves in your story. For you as an inspirational speaker, it is much easier (and more compelling) to tell a story that you endured versus one that you read in a book or heard from someone else.

P.S. You Got This

Even though giving a presentation may seem intimidating, it can also be satisfying when it is all said and done. Above all, being an inspirational speaker makes you a much more successful leader, manager, and teammate. All it takes is being able to set goals for yourself, organizing yourself, and putting together a plan of action. And do not forget, you got this!

For more ways to become an inspirational speaker, check out John Costigan right now!

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