(By Wayne Ens) Who’s telling radio’s story in your market? There’s a lot of noise about all things digital, but you need to shout radio’s story loud and clear. There is probably no better way to establish your credentials as a marketing expert, and to tell the story of radio’s role in the new media economy, than through public speaking.
But don’t let glossophobia, the fear of public speaking, stop you in your tracks. Even renowned public speaker Warren Buffett suffered from glossophobia, but he realized the benefits of overcoming that fear at a very early age. He quickly established his brand, and grew his sales, by teaching investment principles to people much older than himself.
Please, before you let glossophobia kick in, let me share with you why you need to engage in public speaking, how to deliver your message, and who to deliver it to.
What’s in it for you to deliver your story via public speaking?
Researching, preparing, refining, and improving the language in your speech will inevitably result in your being more eloquent and focused in your one-on-one presentations.
A person who delivers or teaches a topic is branded as an expert in that topic.
Like all phobias, once you overcome that fear, you dramatically improve your confidence level.
So who could you deliver your address to? Everyone and anyone. Some might be prospects, some might be key influencers, and some might be future prospects. You might start with high school marketing classes. Early in my career, I spoke to a high school marketing class; one of the students told his mother what I had shared, and she became a client. Groups from local home builders’ associations to downtown improvement associations, from Rotary clubs to dealer groups and Chambers of Commerce, are looking for luncheon speakers or keynote speakers at their annual conferences.
But how do you deliver your speech?
- Use the “KISS” formula (Keep It Simple, Stupid). Plan to focus on a maximum of three main points in order to deliver at least one insight or practical tip for everyone in your audience to take home.
- Resist the urge to try to sell your stations. Prepare a speech that dispels any myths about radio in the new media landscape and clearly informs your audience about the strategic importance of radio in the electronic age marketing funnel. Once your audience has learned the benefits radio can deliver, they’ll approach you to make a presentation about your stations
- Keep your talk short. Make a point of delivering a maximum of three key points. If they’ve asked you to deliver a 30-minute luncheon speech, end it in 25 minutes or less.
- Always have an evaluation form for attendees to fill out so you can learn what the audience liked and didn’t like, and how you can improve your next speech. Ask for permission on your evaluation form to make an appointment to meet with interested parties to talk about your stations.
- Make sure every presentation delivers at least one key thought-provoking insight the audience was not previously aware of.
- Give the event organizer a very short bio they can use to introduce you to the audience.
- Make it entertaining. Make ’em laugh and make ’em cry. Look for jokes, stories, and supporting YouTube videos that make your key points at an emotional level.
- Capture testimonials from your evaluation form to address the fears of future groups that your presentation might be a sales pitch.
- Use the word “I” as seldom as possible. Present all of your ideas from a “you can” perspective instead of an “I did” perspective. The “I did” becomes a given when you explain how “you can” happens.
- Prepare, practice, then prepare and practice again. Practice in front of a mirror, or with your significant other, or even with your dog.
There is an old proverb that says “Don’t hide your light under a bushel.” Shining radio’s light for groups and associations in your market will always pay dividends for you, and your audiences.