Public speaking has proven to be one of the top ways to supercharge your personal brand and build a reputation around it. It is the quickest path to establish yourself as a thought leader because you get an opportunity to connect with the masses at once.
Speaking to the masses is an excellent strategy to showcase your expertise and gain credibility.
Apart from being a tool to spread brand awareness, public speaking is also an ideal method to improve the level of trust and engage with the target audience in real-time. It is this trust that further eases out the challenges one might face while attracting valuable business opportunities; one of which could be the increasing number of qualified leads speaking engagement can drive. And this automatic attraction is perhaps among the most applauded consequences in almost every inbound marketing guide.
Now, trust and credibility are just a few of the many benefits of public speaking when you are building your brand. Find the rest of them below.
Benefits of public speaking
With public speaking, it will not be difficult to transform your presence from being a novice to a subject matter expert. Here are a few other results of your speaking engagements.
- Build your network
One of the best reasons for you to use public speaking is that you will get an opportunity to meet new and leading names across industries. When you expand your network like this, it can often lead to building long-term relationships.
In business, long-term relationships prove to be beneficial more than you can imagine, irrespective of whether it is with other leaders or your clients. You will be able to gain their trust and they might get interested in doing business with you. It’s a win-win situation for all.
- Grow your website traffic
You are your brand’s identity and face. When you work on your personal brand, it also helps improve your website traffic. This is because when your audience attends your seminar, they are more likely to look for your brand and what you represent on the search engine. This helps boost your traffic.
You should also get a backlink from the company’s website that is hosting the seminar. It will further expand your website’s reach.
(Pro tip: link building not only helps build your brand but also has SEO benefits. To leverage these benefits fully, you should add keywords that are relevant to your industry. Use a keyword research tool to ensure you are always in the game.)
Thus, without a doubt, public speaking is one of the best offline ways to improve your online engagements.
- Become a part of the conversation
Public speaking allows you to instantly become a part of not only your network’s conversations but also their expanded network. If everything goes well and according to the plan, you can leave your audience confident in your brand.
If you share interesting facts about the industry or your brand and it has an impact on your audience, they will share their knowledge with others. This will help expand your reach. You might just tap into an untapped segment of the audience and identify new prospects because of this tactic.
- Become more memorable
Brand recall is one of the most crucial strategies that brands work on. With your speaking opportunities, you can make sure that your name is remembered by your audience even long after you have taken the stage.
This is another one of the reasons why you should work towards making your public speaking speeches impactful.
Tips on using public speaking to build a personal brand
Like every other form of personal branding, public speaking requires proper planning. Now, while you are at it, there are a few tips you must have on your fingertips. Find them below.
- Speak on the topics you find interesting
Pretense is hardly awarded for long. If you decide on speaking on the topics you are not that comfortable with, it can lead to failure. After all, tackling difficult questions would be a challenge.
You should be speaking on the topic that you find interesting. If the topic is interesting, it will be easier for you to prepare for it. In fact, there are chances that you might know enough information about it already.
When you are on the stage, you should be prepared to answer all types of questions that are thrown your way. This is the only way to make sure you are truly being seen as an expert and not just any other noob.
- Practice before taking the stage
Public speaking is a skill. And like every other skill, it takes practice to get it right.
If you want to build your brand, you need to be confident and excited. You need infectious enthusiasm. Otherwise, it can become challenging for your audience to put faith in you. If they can’t trust you, they won’t do business with you.
Hence, it is important that you practice what and how you will behave on your stage.
Practicing will also help you understand what kind of brand you want to be. It will help you get the flow right and further help in refining your personality.
When practicing, make sure you stand in front of the mirror and see how you look. Then, make changes accordingly.
- Make edits whenever needed
Content is one of the most important aspects of using speaking opportunities to build a brand. Yes, you should talk about what you find interesting but don’t forget to make it relevant.
Speaking about things that your audience is not there for will only offer them a poor experience. It can have a negative impact on your brand.
Also, you should try to add humor and a few interactive segments here and there. It will help make your speech a little interesting.
We have already discussed how you should practice. During that practice, keep your eyes and ears open to figuring out if your speech is up to the mark. Make edits wherever you are doubtful; even if it’s the slightest of confusion.
You need a script that you are fully confident about if you want to nail your speech.
- Familiarize with the audience
This is one of the important things to do before you take the stage. This is especially true if you are doing it for the first time.
When you enter a venue, you will most likely see all the new faces and those new faces will be seeing you for the first time. Taking the stage straight away, in front of all the strangers, can get a little uncomfortable for many.
This is where you can make an attempt to familiarize yourself with the audience beforehand. Just mingle with the crowd, share a thought or two, and understand where they are coming from.
This way, when you get on the stage, you will see a few familiar faces. It will help calm your nerves and make you feel a little more confident.
- Keep your voice in control
Not using your vocal variety is perhaps the most common mistake that the newcomers make. Your quality of voice is what will help draw the attention of your audience.
If you don’t train your voice to behave in certain ways, you will soon start sounding like that teacher we always thought had the most boring classes. When you are on the stage, you want your audience to be attentive and to grasp what you have to share.
This can be done when you use your vocal variety to the fullest. Use different volumes; start loud and then mellow down.
The best thing is that you can easily train your voice for public speaking and you should definitely do that unless you want your personal brand to be ‘dull and snoozy’.
- Portray your vision
When you are working on your script, this is probably one of the most important sections you should certainly work on. Your vision would be your expectations and hopes from the speech for your audience present.
You should put forth what you are hoping would be the outcome of your conference. It is this vision that can act as a magnet to attract your prospect towards your brand. When you share your vision, your audience will find it easy to connect with you. They will have their expectations set as well.
This is something that allows them to witness transparency and see your brand as a trustworthy business.
- Use visuals
We all know a picture is worth a thousand words. Hence, if and whenever possible, leverage the beauty of visual technology.
When you give your speech, you should use thought-provoking imagery in the background. Make your visuals so impactful that they are the topic of discussion even after the speech has ended.
Using visuals will also make it easier for the audience to retain the information better.
To conclude, we can say that public speaking is perhaps one of the fastest ways to build a personal brand. It is also a great method to build a strong network and improve business. Of course, there are a few things to keep in mind.
It’s always important to rehearse your speeches and scripts beforehand. You don’t have to speak as you write but rehearsing will help you understand what not to speak. You should also use vocal variety to speak on the topics you are interested in. Public speaking is a skill that develops with practice over time. If you are waiting for the right day to start, it is now.
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez