I'm often asked, how do you engage your audience? It starts with a passion for your topic. But even if you have that nailed, a PowerPoint with a bullets isn't going to cut it.
When you speak to an audience you are part domain expert and part entertainer. You have to be, especially if you want your message to be remembered.
At many of the events I speak at there are all types of speakers. From professional keynotes who can guarantee a fun learning experience to association members who volunteered to run a breakout for the first time. And do you know what they all have in common? Hint - it's in the first paragraph of this post. It's passion - speakers are there because they deeply believe in what they want to share with the audience. They have something to say and they want to say it.
Passion is essential. It's the fuel for a speaker. And believe it or not, it's what the audience is longing for too. One of the best secrets in public speaking is to realize that your audience is wanting to get inspired, to learn, to be moved. That's why they are there.
Audiences want to embrace your passion completely. Remember that if you're planning to speak at an event. It will make it easier for you when you take the stage. It's a simple formula, speakers want to share their passion and audiences want to embrace it.
But passion alone isn't always enough to engage audiences. Passion sets the stage for a speaker and allows him or her to get in the proper head space to take the stage. But it takes more than that to really engage audiences. Here are three best practices I follow to deliver my passion in a way that engages audiences.
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Three best practices for engaging audiences:
In closing, there is a tremendous amount of satisfaction for both the speaker and the audience when passion is shared and engagement is created.