A Secret Ingredient To Public Speaking

Firstly, for those trembling in fear at the very thought of speaking in public about anything, let alone your business, Wikipedia explains that public speaking is simply just getting up in front of a small or large group of people and speaking to them in a 'structured, deliberate manner'.

You're doing this with the very intention of informing them about some expertise you have in the business arena, it may be to influence them on a given topic or to encourage them to take up a cause or help a charitable event, or maybe quite simply to entertain this group of listeners sitting in front of you, all eyes and ears.

That's it.

Feeling some nervousness before giving a speech is natural and even beneficial. In fact many training courses on public speaking actually advocate those nerves - saying that is more an adrenalin rush than nerves. Public speaking trainers say that those 'nerves' are vital to give you the energy boost to get up and go for it.

How often do you get out and talk to people about your business?

Talking about your business is also a process of marketing your start-up business, but as a home business owner it's so easy to find yourself only interacting online. This can be much easier - phew, take a deep breath - because you can hide away in your home office all day and pick and choose who you want to engage with.

Phew. Take a deep breath - she's not demanding that I go out and do this public speaking stuff.

Hang on, I'm not done yet. Getting out and speaking to groups of people about your business is one of the best ways to market your business for free.

Yes. Free. And we all know that business marketing is hard to come by.

And you're the best person to get up in front of a crowd of networkers or people at an event and talk freely about your business with passion and oodles of energy. That kind of thing simply cannot be taught by anyone, no matter how fantastic your group of freelancers who help you out in various other areas of your business.

Of course you may need to learn vital public speaking tools and tips to give you the confidence to get up on the stage or front of the crowd in the first place.


How To Become A Confident Public Speaker

The next part is learning how to become a confident, eloquent, and engaging public speaker. We're not talking about that now as this article is all about the secret ingredient to public speaking, but I can certainly think more on that and come back with some tips on how to get confidence to be a public speaker (apart from that secret one thing I will spill out soon).

Or if you're a public speaking trainer reading this, go ahead and send us some public speaking tips for what you believe to be the best ways a home based business entpreneur can start marketing their business with public speaking events.

For my own experience, the first time I was asked to speak to a large networking group before I got there I wondered if I would be nervous. Silly girl. What a stupid question for a first time public speaker! I innocently told myself that it would be fine, I'm a naturally confident and energetic person so what's the big deal?

I stood up and saw the sea of faces swarming in front of me, and like many other newbie public speakers ... I suddenly froze.

Find out why public speaking can rev up your start up home based business marketing

Who were these people and what on earth did they want from me. And worse ... why was I up here and not down there with them.

All I could see was this huge, big fat silver mesh mic in my face, which, let me tell you, looked like a deformed one-eyed bee peering back at me.

The rest of them (who had come to listen to me speak) were just a blur on the back drop of the room. A colourful, tittering blur as they waited for me to open my mouth.

Talk about an OMG moment!

What happens next? You get up there and see the room's fuzz and now you have to do something about it.

Luckily for me, I had been telling myself all the way there that I would do what my mentor, Karen Darby, would do. I knew Karen was one of the most dynamic women in business and I had seen and heard her speaking to groups of women who hung on to every word. So here I was, determined to learn some of her skills.

By putting myself into her shoes, I got by mentally with a little help from my mentor friend.

And I sailed through it!

I told myself I could do it. I reminded myself of all those things she did so well and bit the bullet and opened my mouth to start speaking.


Becoming A Dynamic Public Speaker

Granted, I was probably pretty terrible when it comes to dynamic women public speakers. But I prided myself on having the gumption to get up and just do it. The happy ending to that tale is that someone liked what I did and said that day and asked me to speak at their event and then it carried on from there, and slowly I built up a list of events that I had under my public speaking belt.

To the point ... when I became an author and was promoting my books (Create A Successful Website and Pimp My Site) I was confident to get out there at top business start up shows and events and do my public speaking thing.

I have been thrilled to be invited to speak at prestigious events like the London Book Fair and The Cape Town Book Fair, along with the Great British Start Up Show and Business 2012.

And it gives me a HUGE buzz when people come up to me afterwards and tell me how much I helped them or how they can't wait to go off and put whatever my talk was about into practice (often I talk on the basics of SEO due to my book's title) or how energetic and dynamic I was.

That last comment makes me think back to the first time I got up to do public speaking and I realised that the more I did it, the more relaxed I became. And the better I became.

For me that is the secret ingredient to public speaking.

Do it often enough and speak on a subject that you love, a topic that gives you a buzz and confidence will ooze from every pore. If you're not happy to talk on a given speech, you probably will be a bundle of nerves.

Now I simply can't talk at events where I have to be in one spot and stand behind a mic. I love walking and talking amongst my group of listeners. I love to be energetic and bounce about if I feel the need to do that.

For me that is the secret ingredient to public speaking.

I love to engage with my audience of listeners and get in amongst them - especially if they are people starting up their own business and have come to listen to me talk about my own experiences as a businesswoman - those are my favourite events.



Public Speaking Can Rev Up Your Business Marketing

So what about you? And why did I say that public speaking can rev up your business in the first place? And where do you even start?

There are many groups who welcome speakers, and in fact are often quite desperate to find interesting speakers for their meetings. They won't usually pay you for speaking, and they won't want a sales pitch, so how does that help you build your business?

Well, I'm sure you will have heard the saying that people don't buy from businesses, they buy from people, and what's more, they buy from people they like. If they enjoy hearing from you and hearing about you when you do public speaking, they will be very much more likely to seek out your business website, or contact you directly.

Most groups are happy for you to have leaflets and business cards available, and maybe even copies of books or other materials.

Come on, all you authors and writers, you're perfect public speaking material ... and what's more, you have loads of material to speak about given that you just published that book ...

So where to find opportunities to speak?


Finding Public Speaking Opportunities

Try Googling your town and charities, business groups or specific interest groups and even networking events that take place on a regular basis. Libraries often have lists of local groups that are looking for speakers.

Consider groups like Women's Institute, Rotary Clubs, or church groups. The groups that are the best fit for you will depend upon your topic. But don't be too quick to limit your audience. With a little thought you can tailor your story to the people you are speaking to.

If you find it difficult to source out established groups, consider setting up your own, and inviting people along. Meetup.com is a great way to set up offline groups around particular interests in your area.

But hold on, what if you are terrified of public-speaking?


Fear Of Public Speaking

Speaking in public is a very common fear, but fortunately, as I said above, it's one that is easily solved. Find your local Toastmasters Group. They are a friendly support group who provide a safe space to learn how to speak in public. Go along and within a few meetings you will be speaking confidently, and you will also make new friends and business contacts.

Getting out of your home office and connecting with people on a personal level can be very rewarding, both personally and financially.

Give it a go, and let me know how you get on! I'd love to hear about any weird and wonderful tales where you decided to try out public speaking to rev up your business marketing ...

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