‘Speak’ to the Audience Before You Speak

How to Create Interest BEFORE You Speak

Before you speak, use an audience-centered introduction that appeals to THEIR interest

Everything you do when you speak should be about the audience. This includes your interaction with audience members before the event, and your introduction. These can either create a connection or separate you from the crowd.

But, most speakers use introductions that extol their great accomplishments and build themselves up, with no mention of how the audience will benefit.

Why is this a problem?

Most people fail to understand the mindset of the audience before they speak. What are they thinking about in the moments before you begin to talk?

Literally hundreds of ideas may be running through their heads:

“That last speaker was boring!”

“What time is lunch?”

“Oh no!  I’m supposed to take the kids to soccer practice at 6:00!”

These are just a few of the many thoughts that you have to break through. As a result, you must focus on their needs to break through all of the “noise” in their heads.

When your introduction starts off all about you, in some part of their brains, the audience is thinking “blah! blah! blah!  I’ve heard this before.  Let’s get through this…”

People are too busy today and want to immediately know what they’re going to get from you. Why not tell them?

Tailor your introduction to them, and you’ll gain a room full of willing listeners every time you speak.

How do you do this?

Use these five keys to build a world class introduction:

1)    Start it Off about THEMDon’t talk about yourself first.  Pull the audience in immediately with a question or comment that ties into your main point. This orients them to your subject matter, and let’s them know that listening to you will benefit them.

2)    Make a promise. Tell how they’ll benefit by listening to you. Instead of telling what you will provide, tell them what they will receive.  Again, focusing on what they’ll gain makes them feel more involved.

3)    Build credibility with relevant credentials. Once the audience understands how they will benefit, insert your relevant credentials.  Your experiences must relate to the subject at hand, or else you are simply feeding your ego. Only share credentials relevant to your main message.

 4)    Set up a key point in your speech.  Use the introduction to set up an important point that you can call back to. For example, in my program “Ignite Your Passion, Take ACTION!” my introduction tells the audience how I failed to take action on an opportunity when I was younger. I lived with regret because of it. Later in my speech, I refer back to this incident.  This call back helps build your connection with your audience.

5)    Take everything about YOU and turn it into something about THEM.  The most important word in speaking is you.  Review each sentence in your introduction, and, where possible, turn everything about you into something about them.

These five steps can create an introduction that immediately makes the audience sit up and take notice. They will be involved. Conequently, you increase the odds you’ll have their full attention before you say one word.

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How to Create Interest BEFORE You Speak ultima modifica: 2011-10-03T18:49:09-04:00 da Michael Davis