Top 5 Public Speaking Books to Help You Perfect Your Pitch

Want to become the best public speaker you’ll ever be? No matter what industry you’re a part of, speaking is an essential part of the job. Even if it is not on a daily basis, improving your public speaking skill can only set you up for success. It is normal to feel anxious before giving a big speech. However, improving your skills and staying prepared will help boost confidence and overall results.

To help you stay prepared and even enhance your knowledge of public speaking, here are the top 5 public speaking books to help you perfect your pitch.

Lend Me Your Ears: All You Need to Know About Making Speeches and Presentations by Max Atkinson


Written by speech coach and communications researcher, Max Atkinson gives you the ins and outs of presentations and how you can get your audience hooked. He provides useful insight into the essence of body language as well as non-verbal communication.

Resonate: Present Visual Stories That Transform Audiences by Nancy Duarte


Nancy Duarte has made it her mission to give you the best advice on successful presentations. She believes that the easiest way to judge a presentation is to determine its effectiveness with the audience. According to Duarte, presentations must be geared towards a certain passion for persuasion and a meaningful purpose.

Confessions of a Public Speaker by Scott Berkun


In this book, Scott Berkun gives up a useful, yet humorous insight about what makes a great communicator and public presenter. Here you will personal experiences that include battles and disasters to help articulate your ideas into accurate results. This book is part instructional and confessional as it brings you all the detailed tips you need to make a great speech.

The Presentation Coach: Bare Knuckle Brilliance for Every Presenter by Graham Davies


Graham Davis understands how challenging speeches can be for many people. He also understands how the audience feels in many situations. That is why he has taken his decades of experience and transformed it into a humorous guide that will address nearly every scenario a presenter might have. This book will allow you to learn more than you expected while being entertained.

The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking by Dale Carnegie


Many of us already know Dale Carnegie as a man of power and for his way of words. This book offers insight in the root of the matter in allowing readers to understand the beauty of public speaking. Here you will learn more about how to translate speech into daily conversations in both work and personal lives.

Conclusion

Before you get started on your next speech, be sure to grab one of these books and enhance your skills. Not only will these reads give you great tips and advice, but also help you to feel more confidence and prepared.

Got any books on public speaking that you would like to recommend? Comment below and share your favorites with us!

Stage Fright: 7 Ways to Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking

From rapid heartbeats to sweaty palms, public speaking can be a nerve-wracking experience for many of us. Even with days of planning your speech and preparing on what to say and how to say it, there is always something holding us back: Stage Fright.

To help you get over your fear of public speaking, we’re here to help you understand the mental part of straight fright and how you can overcome this fear.

Here are 7 ways to overcome your fear of public speaking.

Speak For Your Heart

Speak about your own experiences. Tell the audience personal stories related to your topic. This is a great way to inspire others and build their attention as it is also easy to remember our own stories. Just be sure to skip complicated language and terms. This will surely cause you to lose your audience before you even get started.

Prepare Yourself as a Winner

Those who prepare themselves mentally before speaking will set themselves up for success. Visualize the venue and the audience. This will contribute to how you build up your confidence. Being aware of your audience and what you will talk about will mentally prepare you for the big presentation.

Calm Your Nerves

Be aware of your breath and how it controls your nerves. Take deep breaths before the presentation as well as after to calm your nerves and add power to your voice. Practice deep breathing to keep center your voice and prevent dangerous distractions that may undermine your confidence and credibility.

Skip the PowerPoint Presentations

PowerPoint may seem like a friendly voice to your audience. However, aim to make them invest and listen to you for your energy and confidence rather than look up at the slides. Make your business the sole focus of the presentation rather than features on your power point slides.

Practice Effectively

Simulate the experience by rehearsing in what you will wear. Practicing underperformance will create pressure and make you meet the demands of public speaking. Rehearsing your lines will transfer your thoughts and words into the brain and create a fast activation to perform those actions.

Understand that Public Speaking Is a Skill, Not a Born-Instilled Talent for Everyone

Never assume that you are born to be a public speaker, without the practice. Understand that speaking in public is a skill that promotes your confidence in business. This means it is important to put time into your practice and absorb feedback.

Start and End Strong

The opening will set the tone for your speech and how you leave the audience. Public speakers must learn to leave the audience with a call to action plan or some way to get them involved into something bigger. The most crucial parts of the speech are the opening line and the ending conclusion.

How have you helped improve stage fright? What has worked and didn’t work for you? Comment below and let us know what you think!

Public Speaking: 7 Ice Breakers That Actually Work

One popular activity in public speaking is ice breakers. This activity is created to build up the audience and break the ice to prepare them for what you have to say. However, there are many icebreakers that work great while others are downright awkward.

Here are 7 icebreakers that actually work.

Make Jokes at Yourself

While we don’t condone that you make generalized jokes, be sure not to make jokes that might offend the audience or the company. Making jokes at yourself will work well to point at yourself can get others to laugh along. While some jokes can be corny, catching the audience off guard works to break the ice.

Start With Interactive Questions

Before you get started on your speech, you might want to answer a few questions for the audience. You can engage them with light raising the hand questions like “Raise your hands if you want to make a million dollars this year!”

Don’t ask negative questions as this will create a negative environment. This will only make people feel worse about themselves. Instead, raise your hand questions will get the people engaged and involved with the speaker.

Start a Story With a Cliffhanger

Start by saying “I just want to tell a story that is important for today’s speech.” Or you can simply start your story, leaving the conclusion until the end. This will draw your audience in and keep them engaged to find out what happened in the story.

Have an Introduction

While this isn’t exactly classified as an icebreaker, having someone introduce you and talk up your reputation will have the audience warm up to you before you even get on stage. The audience will anticipate your coming and won’t need much of an icebreaker to get you started.

Break the News

Before you get started on your speech, go ahead and mention some topic-related news about an interesting article or person you read about. As a modern culture, we are included to know what is happening and what to hear it first. This is a great way to get the audience engaged and alert.

Ask the Listeners to Complete a Challenge

Get the audience to talk to the person next to them and welcome each other. Or tell them to give their neighbors a handshake or high five. Asking the audience to complete this small talk will engage them not only with you as the speaker but the others around them.

Begin With an Interesting Quote

I got this tactic from one of my friends that is a personal injury attorney in Fort Worth, Texas. His name is Chris and is a partner at the firm Hutchison & Stoy, he does a lot speaking on personal injury best practices around the Dallas-Fort Worth area. He told me that he always tries to get his audience thinking or laughing with a quote.

This works especially well if it is very specific to your topic. You can keep it simple or make it humorous for the audience. Just be sure to keep it related to what you’re about to talk about.

Got any icebreakers you would like to share with us? Comment below and share your tips with us!

6 Ways You Can Hook Your Audience in Less Than 30 Seconds

Public speakers know more than anything that the first impression is the only impression. Therefore, it should be the best one. It is important to hook your audience within the first minute as this will help create a successful introduction. In this guide, we will show you some ways on how you can grab the audience’s attention and achieve a successful speech.

Check out these 6 ways you can hook your audience in less than 30 seconds.

Give An Exclusive Experience to Your Audience

Everyone wants to feel special. You can achieve this by helping your listeners feel like they have won the chance at an exclusive experience to gain knowledge that is inaccessible to everyone. Be unique by giving your audience a special speech. You can start with a shocking statistic from a new study.

Make A Joke

As cliché as this may sound, it is okay to crack a few jokes before your presentation. If you can make them laugh within the first minute, they will start to warm up to you can retain the substance of your speech. Humor is known to help boost information recall. Therefore, making a few jokes will create an easy path towards a successful presentation.

Take Advantage of Props

If you set an unexpected prop on the podium, your audience will be interested to find out why it is placed there. Therefore, they will listen to what you have to say to make sure they don’t miss out. Not only will adding a prop provoke curiosity but it will also make your point stand out.

However, don’t use props just to get attention. These props must serve a purpose that will not distract your message from the speech.

Get the Audience involved

There is nothing more beneficial than getting the audience’s attention. This can be achieved by including them in the presentation. You can ask them to participate by encouraging games, questions, imagined a scenario or a raise-of-the-hand poll in response.

Include some kind of active engagement to grab your listeners’ attention immediately to ensure that they stay interested and remain on the edge during the entire speech.

Keep Your Open Line Short and Sweet

In today’s millennial world, humans are having short attention spans that are getting shorter by the minute. The best way to captivate your audience is to be sincere, short, and brief.

Self-Deprecate To Your Advantage

Understand that it is important to remind people how imperfect you are. You can remind them that you also have the same worries, fears, and mistakes that they might have. Use that to your advantage by trying to solve those problems together in the speech. It is important to come across as genuine and honest. Never try to self-promote but to make the speech about the audience and their needs.

What other ways have you tried to hook your audience in instantly? How has it worked for you? Comment below and share your experiences with us!

8 Ways You Can Improve Your Skills As A Public Speaker

Improving your public speaking skills is not just for professional speakers but all professionals. Public speaking can help you gain better contacts, promote your business and help you to excel in your career.

Here are eight ways you can improve your skills as a public speaker. FYI, I got a few of these from an Entrepreneur article.

Get to Know your Audience

Every speaker must understand their audience to learn about their needs and expectations. You should consider the age, gender, education, religion, and what they know about you. What you know about them prior to your speech will help you succeed and be prepared for what is to come.

Prepare the Venue

One of the biggest issues speakers have is the audiovisual setup. The best thing you can do is to not leave anything to chance. Let the host know what you might need for the lecture. Will you use a microphone with a cord or a cordless mic? Determine which will help you feel confidence and move comfortable.

Consider Your Height

Will you be standing on a podium but uncomfortable due to your height? Consider standing on the wooden block instead. This will help boost your height when you need it the most. On the other hand, consider moving freely without the podium.

Arrive in Advanced

Arriving early will help you to prepare your materials and speech. This will help you prepare any technical kinks and test the equipment to ensure that everything works well. Ensure to scope the space when it is available and do what you need to do to get comfortable.

Introduce Yourself

For most events, the host will formally introduce you and back the audience with a quick biography. You can help make it easier by sending them a few notes of details about yourself to better introduce yourself. You can include a list of items and bullet points instead of writing the introduction as a paragraph.

Start with Ice Breakers

There are many ways you can warm up the crowd before you start your speech. You can start by playing an icebreaker game that will get the crowd to liven up and participate. You can also tell a story related to your speech, share a joke or even a famous quote that relate to the subject of your talk.

Appreciate Their Attention

While you know your topic from the inside out, you won’t be able to hold their attention if you are boring and lack energy. As the saying goes, there are no dull topics, but only dull speakers. Many speeches end up failing because they don’t spark up the interest of the listeners.

Use Sparse Notes

Some speakers work will with notes, while others look simply unprepared. You can tell who has had years of experience or who lacks experience by how they use their notes during the speech. Using power points are increasingly becoming unpopular as experts believe that power points will force you to make eye contact with them rather than the audience.

What other tips do you have on improving your speaking skills? Comment below and share your tips with us!