Seven Tips for the 15 or 30 minute Speaking Engagement

A speaking engagement affords an opportunity to share your expertise in front of a prospective client audience. Often professional groups allot 15 to 45 minutes for guest speakers at breakfast or lunch meetings. The audience and location dictate the tech suaveness of the presentation. You can have all the whiz bang power points you can design, but if the restaurant or meeting venue isn’t in a smart room, does you no good. To make the most of a short presentation try these tips:

  1. Determine the location and the Audio/Visual capacity of the venue.
  2. Discuss the presentation with the event planner to check expectations, time of presentation, number of attendees.
  3. Ask if you can capture the attendee list for your database, be sure the request is shared with the membership. Plan a method for capturing that info so you can follow up with attendees.
  4. Develop a slide presentation for a tech savvy room; then plan on printing handouts of the materials. May seem old-fashioned when many people bring computers to take notes. Keep in mind, still need to do low tech for those not on the tech band wagon and in case technology isn’t working. The smart room for the venue may have server issues on the day you arrive. At least with handouts, you’ll have something. Additionally, people learn differently. Many are visual, audio or kinetic learners (or combinations of)so  handouts and slides and your speaking reach all of the learning types.
  5. Balance providing enough information without telling everything you know. You only have a few minutes, you need time for Q&A. Focus your topic to be sufficient to showcase your expertise, give at least one or two valuable tips, and leave them wanting more.
  6. Provide the presentation, tips, a mini bio and a call to action to use your services.
  7. Offer a discount for attendees who sign up to use your services. This doesn’t have to be a hard sell; just indicate you want the audience to be successful in implementing the tips you offered into their own plans.

You’re ready to share what you know.


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