10 Tips for Improving Your Public Speaking Skills (2023)

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Explore ten tips to improve your public speaking skills.

Author: Barrera Alcova

Product/Version: PowerPoint



From nervous neophyte to silver-tongued orator, anyone can learn to speak in public with skill and confidence. Public speaking is an essential skill for success in many fields, from business to education to politics. If you’re looking to improve your public speaking skills, start with these 10 tips:

1. Find Your Voice

The first step to becoming a confident public speaker is finding your voice. Every person’s voice is unique, and you should use yours to your advantage. When speaking in public, it’s essential to project your voice so that everyone in the room can hear you. But don’t force it – instead, focus on speaking from your diaphragm.

(Video) 4 Tips To IMPROVE Your Public Speaking - How to CAPTIVATE an Audience

via GIPHY

Speaking from your diaphragm can allow you to project your voice without straining it. It also gives your voice a richer, more resonant quality. Rehearsing is also a great way to build confidence in your voice. The more you practice, the more comfortable you’ll feel using it.

2. Know Your Material

When speaking in public, it’s essential to be confident in what you’re saying. That means knowing your material inside and out. Before you give a speech or presentation, take some time to research your topic and learn as much as you can about it. Make sure you understand the main points you want to communicate and any counter arguments or opposing viewpoints.

If you have difficulty summarizing points or finding the right words to phrase something, try writing out your material ahead of time. This will help you organize your thoughts and ensure that you don’t forget anything important.

Summarizing your main points into critical phrases or bullet points can also be helpful. This will give you a “cheat sheet” to refer to if you get lost during your presentation. You’ll find that even just having this safety net will help you feel more confident.

3. Be Prepared

Once you know your material, it’s time to start preparing for your speech or presentation. This doesn’t mean memorizing every word – instead, focus on creating an outline of what you want to say. Practice your speech or presentation several times to be familiar with the material and comfortable with delivering it.

We are only human, so don’t think you have to be perfect. It feels perfectly normal to make mistakes – just try to relax and roll with them. If you have a good idea of your topic and just need help with the delivery, consider recording yourself to identify any areas that need improvement.

4. Engage With Your Audience

One of the most critical aspects of public speaking is engaging with your audience. Throughout your speech or presentation, make sure to maintain eye contact with your listeners. This will help hold their attention and make them feel like you’re speaking directly to them.

You can also use facial expressions and gestures to emphasize specific points and engage your audience. Just be sure not to overdo it – too much movement can be distracting.

Make sure you also eliminate all distractions from the room to focus on your audience. This means turning off any electronic devices, putting away any notes or props, and making sure there’s nothing else that will take away from your message.

5. Use Visual Aids

Visual aids can be a great way to add interest to your speech or presentation and help your audience understand and remember your main points. But don’t go overboard – use visual aids sparingly, only if they’re essential.

Create a content board to establish the flow of your presentation. This will help to ensure that you hit all of the main points while still allowing you some flexibility to adapt to your audience’s reactions. Have a way to allow your audience to follow along, such as a PowerPoint presentation or visual charts to help keep them engaged.

6. Start Strong

The first few moments of your speech or presentation are crucial. This is when you’ll capture your audience’s attention and set the tone for the rest of your talk. Start strong by opening with a bang – an exciting story, a shocking statistic, or a surprising fact.

(Video) 10 Tips for Improving your Public Speaking Skills

Whatever you do, make sure it’s something that will grab your audience’s attention and get them interested in what you have to say. Having an upbeat attitude and speaking with confidence will make an excellent first impression. Ensuring you have a strong presence when starting off will create a better atmosphere of professionalism around your brand and increase ROI on services you purchase.

7. Tell A Story

People love stories, so do it if you can incorporate one into your speech or presentation! Stories are a great way to connect with your audience and make your points more relatable and memorable. Ensure that you have assessed your audience and have tailored your story to them.

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A good story can be the difference between a so-so speech and a great one. If you break your goals down and create a narrative, you can structure things in a way that is easy to follow.

8. Use Humor

Humor is another great way to connect with your audience and make your material more memorable. But as with stories, it’s important to use humor carefully and only if appropriate for your topic and audience. Nothing is worse than a bad joke falling flat.

If you have a good idea of your target audience, break things into smaller groups. This will help you deliver material that is both relevant and interesting to them. If you get the chemistry right, you’ll have set up a winning way to catch their attention.

9. Handle Questions With Confidence

Questions from the audience can be daunting, but they’re also an opportunity to show off your knowledge and engage with your listeners. If you’re well-prepared, you should have no problem answering questions confidently and without hesitation.

If you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t try to wing it – instead, admit that you don’t know and offer to find out the answer later. This shows that you’re honest and willing to help, even doing some extra work.

Make sure you’re always following the main principles of customer service. This will help ensure that you’re constantly handling questions in the best way possible. Defusing tense situations and being proactive will show that you’re in control.

10. Practice, Practice, Practice

The best way to become a confident and booming public speaker is to practice, practice! The more you do it, the easier it will become. So if you’re feeling nervous about an upcoming speech or presentation, don’t worry – just remember that practice makes perfect. Some of the best brands started off as a no-one and grew to be somebody by practicing their trade.

There are plenty of ways you can develop a routine to make your practice sessions more effective. The best way to do this is to keep a weekly or daily journal to track your progress. This will help you identify any areas that need improvement and see how far you’ve come.

Public speaking can be a daunting task, but you can become confident and booming with a bit of preparation and practice. If you have reasonable control of the main points, the use of gestures, and the right tone, you will be able to deliver a great speech. If you can keep these 10 tips in mind, you’ll do well to become a master public speaker. When engaging your audience on Instagram, these are crucial skills to have, especially with the viral potential of Instagram Reels.

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(Video) 10 Tips for Improving Your Public Speaking Skills

FAQs

What are the 10 steps of public speaking? ›

For those testing the water for the first time, the following ten steps are suggested as an easy and organized way to prepare a speech or paper.
  • Know your audience.
  • Know the occasion.
  • Select a topic.
  • Select a purpose.
  • Gather potential content.
  • Gather more content than actually used.
  • Organize content.
  • Phrase the speech.

What are the 5 quick tips to become better at public speaking? ›

  • #1: Breathe. ...
  • #2: Admit Your Nervousness. ...
  • #3: Use (Minimal) Notes. ...
  • #4: Become Comfortable with "The Pause" ...
  • #5: Be Aware of Your Hand Gestures. ...
  • #6: Move Around Some, But Not Too Much. ...
  • #7: Incorporate Visual Prompts. ...
  • #8: Practice, Practice, Practice…Then Practice Some More.
28 May 2021

What are the 13 effective public speaking techniques? ›

To become a better speaker, use the following strategies:
  • Plan appropriately.
  • Practice.
  • Engage with your audience.
  • Pay attention to body language.
  • Think positively.
  • Cope with your nerves.
  • Watch recordings of your speeches.

What are 7 public speaking elements? ›

7 Elements of Public Speaking
  • Speaker. The speaker is the person giving the speech or rather the genesis of the communication process. ...
  • Message. The message is the information you want your audience to get from your public speech. ...
  • Audience. ...
  • Channel/Medium. ...
  • Interference. ...
  • Feedback. ...
  • Situation.
7 Jul 2021

What are the 3 keys so successful public speaking? ›

Follow the 3 P's to Success

Even those who seem to be naturally gifted speakers follow these simple rules of thumb: Prepare, Practice, and Personalize.

What are the 5 P's of public speaking? ›

The five p's of presentation are planning, preparation, consistency, practise and performance.

How can I improve my public speaking weakness? ›

Advertisement
  1. Know your topic. ...
  2. Get organized. ...
  3. Practice, and then practice some more. ...
  4. Challenge specific worries. ...
  5. Visualize your success. ...
  6. Do some deep breathing. ...
  7. Focus on your material, not on your audience. ...
  8. Don't fear a moment of silence.

How can I speak confidently? ›

How to speak with confidence
  1. Embrace your weaknesses. ...
  2. Give yourself time to prepare what to say. ...
  3. Maintain eye contact. ...
  4. Limit the amount of questions you ask. ...
  5. Allow the other person to initiate the conversation in silent moments. ...
  6. Be yourself.

What are 5 suggestions for being a good speaker? ›

5 simple ways to become a better speaker
  • Don't memorize your lines. Far too many speakers believe that the best way to give a great speech is to memorize the content word-for-word. ...
  • Practice in a noisy room. ...
  • Embrace audio and visuals. ...
  • Focus on serving the audience. ...
  • Make it interactive.
31 Aug 2016

What are the 8 factors to show effective speaking skills? ›

The 8 Key Elements of Highly Effective Speech
  • Gentle eye contact.
  • Kind facial expression.
  • Warm tone of voice.
  • Expressive hand and body gestures.
  • Relaxed disposition.
  • Slow speech rate.
  • Brevity.
  • The words themselves.
10 Jul 2012

What are the 3 basics of good speaking? ›

The following three core elements of vocal production need to be understood for anyone wishing to become an effective speaker: Volume - to be heard. Clarity - to be understood. Variety - to add interest.

What are the 6 P's of public speaking? ›

And how can we use them to improve our presentation skills? I like to think of it as the 6 Ps of presentation skills – pace, pitch, power, pronunciation, passion and, perhaps the most powerful of all – pause. They are all interlinked so it's hard to give “rules “about how to use your voice well.

What are the 4 methods of public speaking? ›

There are four main kinds of speech delivery: impromptu, extemporaneous, manuscript, and memorized.

What are the 3 P's of public speaking? ›

If you are interested in public speaking, then you have probably heard about the 3 Ps of Public speaking - Prepare, Practice, Perform. And if you are a leader working with a communications consultant, you know about the 3 Ps as well.

What is the #1 rule of public speaking? ›

1. Practice It may sound obvious, but when it comes to nailing a speech or presentation, practice is your friend.

How speak well in public? ›

How to Become a Better Public Speaker
  1. Study Great Public Speakers.
  2. Relax Your Body Language.
  3. Practice Voice and Breath Control.
  4. Prepare Talking Points.
  5. Know Your Audience.
  6. Add a Visual Aid.
  7. Rehearse.
  8. Record Your Speeches.
29 Apr 2021

What are the 6 C's of speaking? ›

THE SIX C'S OF EFFECTIVE LANGUAGE USE

Clarity makes speeches understandable. Color adds punch to your message. Concreteness reduces misunderstandings. Correctness enhances your credibility.

What are the 7 presentation skills? ›

Here are 3 things NEVER to say in a presentation (no matter how ice breaker-y the might seem!).
  • Understand your audience. ...
  • Tell the story of you. ...
  • Create a call to action. ...
  • Use storytelling to make your résumé come to life. ...
  • Rehearse your interview. ...
  • Watch your body language. ...
  • Control your voice.
21 Feb 2020

What are the 7 tips for better presentations? ›

After that, how do I give a memorable presentation?
  • Tip #1: Tell stories.
  • Tip #2: Smile and make eye contact with the audience.
  • Tip #3: Work on your stage presence.
  • Tip #4: Start strong.
  • Tip #5: Show your passion.
  • Tip #6: Plan your delivery.
  • Tip #7: Practice.
  • Tip #8: Breathe.
28 Jan 2022

What are the 9 Effective speaking Skills and Strategies? ›

Here are 9 effective public speaking skills:
  • Practice to Eliminate Nervousness. ...
  • Adapt to Your Audience. ...
  • Be as Real as Possible. ...
  • Plan Out Your Content. ...
  • Be Aware of Your Hands and Body. ...
  • Use Visual Aids. ...
  • Believe in Your Ability. ...
  • Interact with Your Audience.
10 Nov 2021

What are the 8 steps in speech preparation? ›

8 Steps to Make a Great Speech
  1. Admit You Have a Problem. Isn't this always the first step? ...
  2. Develop a Great Opening. You need to grab your audience's attention at the very beginning. ...
  3. Organize Your Presentation. ...
  4. Take Care of Yourself. ...
  5. Own the Room. ...
  6. Connect With Your Audience. ...
  7. Remember, 'Content Is King' ...
  8. Ask for Honest Feedback.
5 Sept 2012

What are the 7 tips for public speaking? ›

Robin Roberts's 7 Tips for Public Speaking
  • Prepare. Preparation equals confidence. ...
  • Know your audience. ...
  • Tell stories. ...
  • Know where to look. ...
  • Keep it simple. ...
  • Enunciate. ...
  • Remember that it won't always be perfect.
24 Aug 2021

What is the secret to great public speaking? ›

Good public speaking is all about timing. Use your seconds wisely. Don't just fill them up with words – use pauses, gestures, and silence as well.

How can I speak good English in public? ›

How to speak English better in 10 easy steps
  1. Imitate away. ...
  2. Avoid learning word by word. ...
  3. Use what you've learned immediately. ...
  4. Be an actor. ...
  5. Listen to others as much as you speak. ...
  6. Listen to yourself and get feedback from native speakers. ...
  7. Become visual. ...
  8. Narrate your life.
10 Sept 2019

What are 10 elements of a powerful presentation? ›

What Are the Elements of a Powerful Presentation?
  • Engaging icebreakers.
  • Visual storytelling.
  • Eye-catching images.
  • Data visualizations.
  • Animations.
  • Simplicity.
  • Music.
  • Videos.
23 Jul 2021

What are the 10 simple rules for effective presentation? ›

Ten Simple Rules for Making Good Oral Presentations
  • 1: Talk to the Audience. ...
  • 2: Less is More. ...
  • 3: Talk Only When You Have Something to Say. ...
  • 4: Make the Take-Home Message Persistent. ...
  • 5: Be Logical. ...
  • 6: Treat the Floor as a Stage. ...
  • 7: Practice and Time Your Presentation. ...
  • 8: Use Visuals Sparingly but Effectively.

What are the 10 most common presentation mistakes? ›

10 Common Presentation Mistakes
  • Mistake 1: Not Preparing Enough. ...
  • Mistake 2: No knowledge concerning your location and material. ...
  • Mistake 4: Not tailoring your content to your audience. ...
  • Mistake 5: Stretching out your presentation. ...
  • Mistake 6: Ineffective graphics. ...
  • Mistake 7: Not concentrating your text. ...
  • Mistake 8: Sloppy speech.

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