Because leaders have to cast vision and inspire those on their teams to action, the ability to communicate well is a necessary skill each leader must have. So they question begs – how do you become a great public speaker?
Comic-Con is a 4-day event held annually to showcases comic books, science fiction and previews of some of the most anticipated upcoming movies. In Comic-Con 2013 the makers of Thor: The Dark World pleasantly shocked those in attendance when Thor’s arch-nemisis Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston, made surprise appearance which must be seen above.
After watching Hiddleston’s performance, I gleaned the following 16 Tips To Becoming A Great Public Speaker:
- Give People What They Want – Is what you are saying about you or your audience? Those who attend Comic-Con are looking for a memorable experience. They want to get advanced screenings of upcoming movies and see the stars of the film. Marvel went over-the-top in delivering on their desires. What is it that your audience truly wants from you?
- Start Small – Never despise small beginnings for greatness is often birthed and cultivated in secret. As Hiddleston said in the interview below, “I’m a stage actor. I trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. 7,000 is the biggest gig I’ve ever played.”
- Earn The Right To Be Heard – Because of the success of Hiddleston’s character Loki in the Thor and Avengers movies, the film’s producers knew Loki would be wholeheartedly (and that is an understatement) well-received.
- Create Tension – Comic-Con did this by turning off the lights.
- Use Theatrics – The use of lights, multi-media and other forms of theatrical communication create experiences your audience will talk about days, weeks and months later.
- Respect Your Audience – One of the reasons the Marvel movie franchise is so popular is they respect their audience. The producers of Thor: The Dark World realized their expectations were high so they created an interactive experience with Loki himself.
- Sympathize With Your Audience – The audience must know you understand their struggle. Hiddleston mentioned they had “lined up in the sweltering heat for hours.”
- Speak To Those Who Are There To Hear Your Message – As Seth Godin has taught us, as a speaker are you more concerned with the one critic/heckler or the 99 who are there to hear what you have to say. Focus on the 99.
- Wonderfully Surprise Your Audience – As a public speaker, are you and your format predictable? When promoting movies at Comic-Con the actors and directors traditionally participate in a panel Q&As. No one had ever come out in complete character as Hiddleston did.
- Engage Your Audience – Do you speak to your audience or at them? Through body-language, facial expression and other gestures, Hiddleston made the audience part of the experience.
- Own The Content – Great communicators have mastery over their content and how best to communicate it. This is evidenced by the phrase, “The bright lure of freedom diminishes your life’s joy in a mad scramble for a place in this chamber, this meager palace of Midgard, in the arena they call Hall H.”
- Leverage What Is Familiar – As a public speaker you have content and techniques which are time-tested and previously well-received. Use them!
- Create Memorable Bottom Lines – Think of the top 5 sermons or speeches you have ever heard. Now, what do you remember about them? I suspect it is a story or memorable bottom line. Hiddleston’s memorable bottom line is “I am Loki from Asghard and I am burdened with glorious purpose.”
- Use Humor – Humor disarms your audience and creates a connection.
- Deliver Your Speech/Sermon With Passion – As Hiddleston reached a crescendo with the phrases, “Say my name. Say my name. SAY MY NAME!!!”, his passion energized those in attendance.
- Deliver Your Speech/Sermon With Excellence – Audiences no longer accept average. They will not be reduced to a level of mediocrity. However, as demonstrated by Hiddleston’s speech, they will line up for hours for excellence.
If you want to become a great public speaker and/or preacher, I cannot recommend enough the Preach Better Sermons event below. This is a FREE online conference which all speakers should sign up for. Click HERE or on the image below and register today.