Speakers Inside Secrets
He is the consummate interviewer and an expert consultant on how to get high value clients and sell more of your professional services.
Here is the transcript of that interview.
Jim: Coaches who make dynamic presentations to trade groups or conferences will build their business faster than those who don’t. But a lot of coaches help to just survive in front of an audience instead of thriving on stage. How can we get past all that and deliver awesome client generating presentations? That’s our topic for today’s episode of the High Income Coaching Podcast.
Jim: Welcome to all my Coaching Connector friends. This is Jim McCraigh. We are going to crush some of the things that hold people back when they do client generating presentations. People hire Fred Miller because they want to improve their public speaking and presentation skills. Fred teaches people how to develop, practice and deliver knock your socks off presentations. Fred, thank you so much for coming today.
Fred: Thank you, Jim, for having me. It’s a pleasure.
Jim: It’s great to be with you again, too. I think it’s probably been over a year now since you and I got together for another podcast and that turned out to be really popular. You’ve been doing this for a long time, but I’m curious to how you got started as a speaker.
Fred: Well, it’s a great question. I got stared as a speaker by watching a lot of speakers. I grew up in the era and I think you did, too, Jim, when Zig Ziglar and Brian Tracy and Les Brown and a bunch of these guys would have big events and they would travel the country and there would be all these speakers and I just loved watching these guys and it gets so psyched up watching them and you’re thinking to yourself, maybe I could do that. You saw how powerful it was and then joined Toastmasters. I was in Toastmasters for I guess twenty-five years or so and just decided the time was right. I wrote my book, my first book in 2011 and I just love doing what I’m doing. Because what I’ve found, and, and you know this, Jim, because you are a speaker, is that speaking opportunities or business career and leadership opportunities. That fear of public speaking and holds a lot of people back from taking and making those opportunities.
Jim: Well, you’re absolutely right about that. I remember my first speech, I think I was petrified and it was to my own people. I was in a corporate environment and I eventually got past that and I got past it because I talked to people like you. And people who encouraged me and people who would give me some sort of guidance towards getting there and I ended up doing a lot of professional speaking and I still do. If you pay me enough, I’ve raised my fees, but I’ve heard you say that you think that a great presentation is like the recipe for a cake. Can you explain that
Fred: Sure. There are specific ingredients, you add at specific times in a specific manner. You do specific things to them and you a great cake. That goes hand in hand with delivering a presentation and one of the fears of public speaking is people don’t know the structure of it. They’ll repeat themselves. They’ll go down some bunny trail that has nothing to do with their presentation . They’ve got to have that structure to the speech. If you have that structure and you know it, that’s one of the things that will lessen that fear of public speaking and it’s also one of the things that will engage your audience because if you do it correctly, they know what’s coming. They’re anticipating and, hopefully, they want to hear it.
Jim: There is obviously a tremendous amount of value in being able to speak to a crowd, but there’s different kinds of speeches. There’s talks that are designed to generate leads. There’s talks that are designed for other purposes. Where should somebody start if they decide that, look, I really want to, for example, generate leads. I’m a coach or a consultant and I understand that this can do great things for me, but I have no idea where to start.
Fred: Well, first of all, you got to decide what you’re going to talk about. You need to really define who you are and what your topic is. It’s got to be a bullseye and I’ll give you a great example. I heard a lawyer a few months ago talk and he said, I’m an attorney. I’m a contract attorney. I do land contracts, real estate contracts, business contracts. What I do is contracts. People would say, “Well, I’ve got a traffic ticket.” I don’t do that. I do contracts or, “I think I’m going to get a divorce.” I don’t do that. I do contracts. You want to be known specifically for one thing. That goes hand in hand with give me a good, great elevator speech. Once you decide what the topic is going to be, because you can’t be all things all people develop a signature presentation and then give it to as many people as you can go. It’s great to give them the chambers of commerce, Optimist clubs, Kiwanis clubs, wherever you can because you want somebody sitting in the audience thinking. “That guy knows what he’s talking about. I mean, he is really good. He’s an expert and if I ever need that product or service, I’m going to talk to him and my radar is up and if somebody ever says, “Hey, I’m looking for a guy who does whatever that is,” I’m going to refer him because you want people know exactly what you do easily. It’s your passion because passion trumps everything.”
Jim: Well, I think you said something there. I want to explore a little bit further. You said a Rotary and other groups like that. Kiwanis clubs, Lions clubs. Somebody might say, “Well, look, I’m a business speaker and I have corporate clients and why would I waste my time doing those kinds of groups.” I’ll give you an example and it’s the way that I started out. I used to speak anywhere that would have me, Fred, I don’t care who it was and isn’t that a way to get started in develop yourself in what I would call it, low liability type.
Fred: Oh yeah. And you never do it for free. You do it for fee waived.
Jim: Well, thank you for that. I appreciate that, and lunch. I got a lot of lunches.
Fred: Yeah, a lot of lunches and sometimes, you never know. Ask, “Do you have somebody who might sponsor it or maybe one of your members has a restaurant.” I could get a gift card, but I will tell you this. You will learn three ways. You learn by observing. You learn by practicing, but most of all you learn by doing so. Every speaking opportunity is an opportunity to improve your talk. I have never done one that I’ve practiced or come out of that having learned something. And if I haven’t practiced enough where I gave him that had not given that talk in a while, I’ve learned something so you can always improve what you do and you never know who’s going to be in the audience.
Fred: Now at a certain point, to your point, you don’t do it for free. I mean, I’ve told people, “My pro bono bucket is overflowing.” I do work with Ted talk speakers. I do work with unemployed and underemployed people. At a certain point you can do that, but if you’re just starting out, you want to get out there and speak because the learning is in the doing.
Jim: What about Toastmasters? You mentioned that you were in Toastmasters.
Fred: I love Toastmasters. It is an international organization. They have clubs all over the world. Many clubs in most towns. They have two tracks. Basically, leadership and public speaking. They have a path you follow. But my advice has always been this, Jim, visit clubs. Visit as many clubs as possible because while they’re all good, they have their own little idiosyncrasies. Some are very structured, some are loosey goosey. Personal story: It’s all about stories and speeches, so personal story. The first club I joined, I think they all belonged to Mensa. You know the High IQ organization. I know. Shame on me. It took me six months to figure it out. I wasn’t a fit and I dropped out and six months later and think, no, no, I got to find the club that I fit into. I want to do this. So my advice is always to visit a number of clubs and find one you fit into. I was in it twenty-five years. Since I published my book, I’ve had the privilege of speaking to lots of clubs, regional conferences they’ve had. It’s been a great experience. I always recommend Toastmasters.
Jim: What’s been the effect of your going out and speaking about your book, how has that worked for you?
Fred: Having a book and being a speaker makes you an expert. People perceive an author as an expert. Here’s a suggestion. I give this all the time. Even if you don’t have a book yet, you have a book inside of you, right? Of course you do. When you write your own introduction, and that’s extremely important. Always write your own introduction as soon as you get that speaking opportunity. One of the things to include is, “And the title of his upcoming book is.” Let me tell you a story. I’m in front of this huge chamber and the guy’s reading my introduction. He says, “And the title of his upcoming book is. . . Oh my gosh, you have a book coming out?” and he looks right at me. I go, “Yeah.” He goes, “Oh, that’s awesome! It is awesome!” So I always tell people. Now, you can change the title of the book. You didn’t tell them what it’s going to come out. And once you publish the first book, “The title of your first book is,” and people say, “Well, what’s the second book, Jim?” You go, “Oh, I would love to tell you, but my attorney and my publisher had me sign all these nondisclosures. I’d be killed if I said anything.” But that perception of being an upcoming author is huge. Does that make sense?
Jim: Yeah, absolutely. I think from an early age, we learn in school that we are supposed to believe what we read. I absolutely know. I believe that it just comes to what I call CIA, credibility in advance. Before you step on that stage or before you try to convert somebody into a client, you’re building credibility. I like your idea about creating your own intro.
Fred: Oh, you have to. That’s the problem, Jim. The guy who’s going to introduce you is going to grab your bio. The fact that you went to. . . I’ll take myself: The fact that I went to University of Missouri, that I’m married, I’ve got two kids, four grandkids. That’s what they’re going to say. It has nothing to do my presentation. You write your own introduction. As soon as you get that speaking opportunity, let the person know it’s your responsibility to write it and it covers three things. Why this subject, why this speaker, and that’s your credibility and why now. To the point you just made, you make this as awesome as possible about you because when the third party reads it, yeah, mine has things like, well, he’s in it. He’s an international speaker, he’s coached people all over the world. His book is bought in many countries. It sounds like big stuff. If I were to get and say, “Hey, you know, my book was bought over in England and somebody in Australia,” let’s go sound like I’m bragging. So it’s a third party saying these great things about you. That introduction should be like the king’s trumpeters announcing the king is coming. And one of the things we’re going to talk about, how to engage your audience. Well, if that introduction is a good one or great one that you write. Well, that’s going to make the audience say, hey, I want to hear this. This sounds dynamite. Plus, you’re doing a great favor to that emcee. He may not be a guy wants to read this kind of thing. He may have been picked for the job and if you write a great introduction that can make him a hero because it’s a speaking opportunity for him.
Jim: Oh, you’re so right, and if you leave them to come up with their own, you will always be sorry.
Fred: Oh yes.
Jim: I’ve had a couple of those and even when I gave them the right thing, they just decided that they were going to go on their own, but that’s part of the foibles of doing this and that leads me to the next thing. As a speaker, and I love your idea about practicing not in front of the mirror, but getting out and speaking to all these groups because it gives you this confidence in front of a group that when things like that happen, then you are in control of the room and you can recover., right?
Fred: We’ll take that a step further. If you’re the speaker, you’re in charge of everything. Bring all your own stuff. I’m a Mac guy so I bring all my own adapters. I bring my own remote. Nobody wants to hear that the AV guy didn’t show up or that the batteries ran out of the remote that they’re going to hand you. You’re responsible for everything. So you write your own introduction, and let me just make another point because it’s really important in your opening.
One part of your opening is to tell them how you’re going to handle questions. So in my opening I will say, I’m going to talk about this, this and this. I have time set aside after each of those sections for a few questions just on that topic. I have time set aside the end for questions. Then I’ll conclude my presentation. That way you’re not interrupted. How many times, Jim, have you been to a presentation and the speaker goes, oh my gosh, I’ve got 15 slides and five minutes left. Okay, everybody, hold on, watch, click, click, click, click. You’ve got to control those questions. Those can destroy a presentation. You get up and start speaking. Jim, what if the ask you a question about your third to last slide. But if you’ve had an upfront contract with them in your opening and you tell them how you’re going to handle it, that’s not a problem. And for the one or two people who may raise their hand. I’ll say, “Do me a big favor. Write that down and if I don’t answer when it come to the Q&A, be sure to catch me afterwards. We’ll figure it out. Thank you very much.”
Jim: I agree. I’ve seen the opposite, too. Maybe it’s not the opposite. I saw a speaker once who was supposed to be sharing their time with the speakers that followed them and it was a limited amount of time and this person went on and on and on. I remember the meeting planner in the front road jumping up and down, waving her hands and the guy was oblivious to it and the woman that was supposed to follow him, she was turning red. Terrible. She was going to end up with 15 minutes. Starting and stopping on time is paramount too, right?
Fred: Oh, it’s huge. Stop a little bit before is okay, not too much because it throws off the program. But you’re right, you go into somebody else’s time, shame on you. And managing those questions is one of the keys because people don’t manage questions well. Don’t just let people start asking questions. You can’t do that. You tell them when you’re going to do it. Another big point is that you close after the questions. Your opening and closing are the book ends of your speech. There’s something called the law of primacy and recency. The audience best remembers the first and last things you say and do. It’s more the last thing. So the last thing I say and do as a speaker, is the first thing you’re going to remember. And the reason why to have your closing afterwards is, what if you do it the traditional way? traditionally I finished my speech. You’re a great host, Jim. You come up say, “Oh Fred, that was dynamite. Can you stick around for some questions?” That’s how it’s done usually, right?
Fred: So I’m taking questions and I’ve got for one or two more. The last question is when Bobby raises his hand and Bobby says, “You know, Fred, that thing you said about practicing in your mind’s eye. You’ve got to be kidding me. What a bunch of garbage! Wasted my hour today.” Well, time’s up. Everybody gets up to leave. Last thing they heard, first thing, you don’t want that. That’s why it’s real important. Take your questions before your closing.
Jim: So, you raise a really good point there. A lot of people work on their opens. They get that down, they memorize it, and then they launch into the rest of their speech. But I don’t think a lot of people really work on that close.
Jim: Probably more important, maybe.?
Fred: Oh, absolutely, because the last thing you say and do is the first thing I remember. But when it comes to practicing and you remind me of this. You do want to memorize, but you don’t want to say it like you’ve memorized, but you want to have your opening down pat and your closing. But when you’re practicing, you want to also practice on the sticky spots. We tend to avoid those. Maybe you have a spot in there with a couple words that are hard for you to pronounce well. Either change the words, learn how to pronounce them or leave it out. But we tend to practice on what we know really well. So, to your point, everybody’s got their opening down, but something that will practice on their closing, but also sometimes they don’t practice sometimes on the body of their speech. If there’s a sticky spot, which we all try to avoid, it’s not gonna work.
Fred: Now, while we’re talking about practicing, let me throw this out. One of the great ways to practice is to use your either your iPad or your computer. Record a video, record yourself video, and try to get full body because nonverbal communication trumps verbal. The first time you go back to the video, turn the sound off. Just watch. Are you twitching? How’s your posture? Do you have anything that could be distracting to the audience. The second time turn it around and just listen. How’s your cadence? How’s your inflection? Do you have any ahs or errs? How has your enunciation and pronunciation? Third time you go back to a video, watch the audio and video because you’ll see and hear what the audience sees and hears. The fourth time have a trusted friend next to you and let them look at it because we all have blind spots.
Fred: You may think you’re better than you are in some things and you may miss some things. So have that coach next to you the next time you look. That is a fantastic way to practice. In fact, sometimes I will coach people and they’ll be across the country and rather than doing that live, I’ll say, do a video and then put up online. I’ll critique it. Well, if they’d done this, they’ll never put up the first video. He’ll put up the fourth or fifth, which is much, much better than I would have been if they didn’t do that.
Jim: I like that idea. I had never thought about turning the sound off.
Fred: Well, if you go back to the last presidential debates, I mean, look at Jeb Bush, “I want to be president.” Give the guy five gallons of Red Bull, he didn’t want to be there. Hillary, so scripted. You can almost see a lawyer in one ear and a PR person in the other ear she’s scared of death the camera is going to get some sound bite. Bernie, all over the place and Trump, don’t get me started, but Trump – Authentic! Absolutely authentic and that’s what people love. And a good presentation should be like we’re having here, Jim, just conversational.
Jim: One of the things that I wanted to get to today was the reason why coaches might be doing these presentations anyway and what I’m talking about is how can we convert the people in that audience into clients. What has worked for you or your clients? Take us through that process.
Fred: Well, I think it’s a regular marketing campaign. I blog every two weeks and I will send out an email marketing program that kind of little teaser to that blog and I’ve built up my list. I’ve got thousands of people on my list. One way to get those names when you speak is to giveaway something free. When I speak. I say, “I’ve got two gifts for you. I have an elevator speech template and a speaker’s template.” I’ll put up a picture of them on the on the slide show and say, here’s how you get it. Email me, do it right now. Fred@NoSweatPublicSpeaking.com and I’ll send those to you. Well, when they do that, I’ve got their name and email. I also, on my website on linkedin and on facebook, I’ll do the same thing and they go to a landing page. I’ll have free speakers checklist or free infograph, 11 ways to lessen the fear of public speaking. When they go to that landing page, they put in their name and email address. That’s all you want to ask for. You won’t get anything more and I get their name and I’m gradually dripping on them so I am top of mind when they’re looking for something like that. Now, in my email, I’ll always have that little teaser for what my blog post is, but also have a couple other things. I’ll have a link to my books and I’ll have a link to coaching. With the email marketing program I use, I know who’s clicked on it and how often they’ve clicked and I will email those people and say, “Jim, I notice you got my last email and you clicked on coaching. That usually tells me you’ve raised your hand and want more information. If that’s true, let’s schedule a conversation. If he did it by mistake, that’s okay. Let me know so I can close the file.”
Jim: I like that and the reason why I do, Fred, there’s what I call the open and closed window theory. There are certain number of people who come to your presentation that may need your help today, but the chances of that are pretty small. But that window is going to open up some time in the future. Maybe they wanted to get started speaking. Maybe they want to get better. They’ve been doing it for awhile and they realize they need to improve, so by capturing their contact information and getting them into an email funnel or drip, like you said, that enables you to be there, top of mind awareness, when they are ready and I think that’s a really good point you made there.
Fred: Well, it goes back to the thing of no pain, no sale. They’ve got to be hurting bad enough. Nobody who’s ever contacted me, after we’ve started a conversation, I never get somebody saying, well, you know, it was just a slow day on might be a great idea to improve my public speaking. No, they’ve been thinking about it long time, a real long time. I remember specifically a guy sitting in my office and he said, “I have lost promotional opportunities because I didn’t get up and speak” They’ve got to have enough pain that they want to do something about it. It’s a big thing One of the ways you want to answer that, if you’re a coach. Some of the great verbiage to use is, “This important to you, isn’t it? I mean, it was just not all of a sudden this came top of mind. You’ve been thinking about this a long time, haven’t you?” And some people, they’ll go back to their childhood. “You know, eighth grade I had to give a book report. I still remember having to sit down. I couldn’t finish it.” So some of this goes way, way back, but you know, a lot of it has to do with, again, my mantra, “Speaking Opportunities, are Business, Career and Leadership Opportunities” and realizing their career is being held back by not doing that. It’s worth the pain to go through and figure it out because most people don’t.
Jim: No, you’re exactly right. So if somebody, let’s say a coach or a consultant or some other professional that seeking new clients wants to go out and speak, how do they get booked? What’s your take on that? Where do they even start?
Fred: Well, contact those directors of the Chambers of Commerce. Go to the Kiwanis Clubs, all those civic organizations. They’re listed and you can find out who’s in charge and then associations. Now, associations may pay you and they may not, but there’s always a book of associations in an area and you want to contact those presidents. Ask who the director is for setting up speakers and here’s some other good verbiage to use. Say, “I know sometimes things will happen at the last minute. Maybe your speaker gets ill. Maybe they’re out of town. I may be ready. Keep me in mind if that should happen.” I know a guy, every time he goes to an event, he’ll go up to the meeting planner and say, look, just in case something happens, here’s my card. Here’s what I speak on. If something happens, I’m here and he’s always ready.
Jim: I’ve seen speakers do that with no expectation, and I saw a guy get down on hands and knees in a very expensive suit to help the meeting planner. Now he wasn’t the speaker. He was a speaker. To help the meeting planner fix the cable situation that was messed up because the power points weren’t getting on the screen and nobody could figure out how to press F12 or whatever it is on the computer and they’re all different, so that kind of served this. That’s a good idea and I’m going to write that one down.
Fred: That will keep you prepared, too. Because you know if you’ve got that presentation, you’re always ready. You better be checking it out. Every presentation I give, I would say 80 percent, I’m always tweaking it a little bit. Even if I’ve given it 100 times, I might be changing a slide. I might be rearranging them. I might have thought about something I haven’t thought about before. The fact is, and I’ve actually just put a slide into this effect, Jim. Your competition, whatever, and whoever it is has set the bar low, very, very low. It doesn’t take a lot to stand out from others and if you follow up on emails, if like the person you saw, they helped somebody out, people remember that. It’s little things that make a huge difference. You can stand out from the crowd by doing very little. Have you found that to be true?
Jim: It’s so true because I’ve met some speakers that were really arrogant folks. I’ve dealt with a lot of meeting planners and these people, they take a lot of guff from some of these speakers. Some well known people and so when you come across as a breath of fresh air, “Hey, I’m here to help. If you need something, if you need an adapter. I haven’t got a suitcase full of them. Whatever it is.” I think it’s really important because they have fears like we do. Administrators on both sides and one of them is this fear that you’re going to be boring. This fear that you’re going to be late.
Fred: Always show up early and show them you care. I’ve seen speakers coming in at the last minute. But, a couple of reasons you want to show up early. You want to make sure all that audio video stuff is working and it’s your responsibility. To make sure the seating is like you want it. I’ve seen speakers rearrange a whole room. Really, really big is that you want to meet and greet as many people as possible. That is one of the greatest tips I can give for lessening the fear of public speaking and engaging an audience. Most speakers don’t do that. I remember walking up and down aisles and introducing myself and somebody would look up, go, “Hey, you’re the speaker, right?” I said, “Yeah, I am. I really, really appreciate you coming in today.” Well, they’re thinking, wow, I didn’t even want to be here. My boss made me, but kind of nice the guy comes over. Maybe I’ll pay attention. This could be great.” It’s also so much easier to talk to somebody who you’ve met. That’s one of the best tips I can give for lessening that fear of public speaking.
Jim: I love that one and I’ve that it helps me warm up. I hate being backstage or on the side and you’re just waiting and waiting for them to call your name and introduce you go up. I like talking to those people and then what I do with them is, I will look them in the eye while I’m doing my talk. I’m going to pick those four or five people or I’ll say. “I was talking to Sam over here earlier,” and if that’s a technique that’s really helped me because I’m looking at a guy that I talked to 20 minutes ago and so subtle that the people think you’re talking to them. Even if you’re talking to one specific person, they think that you’re looking at them. It’s amazing. I’m glad you brought that up.
Fred: It’s called a Shout Out. And we talk about that. When you tell stories like that, we go into our hard drives, and we pull a file out that matches that. So let me tell you two quick stories about the Shout Out. I’m talking to an engineering firm. I’m talking about the importance of stories and the VP who hired me raises his hand. He says, “Excuse me. Has anybody ever heard Johnny tell stories?” I thought we were going to have to peel Johnny off the ceiling. I mean, it’s like the spotlight comes on, everybody’s looking at Johnny, he’s beaming. Like, I never saw a guy that proud. I said to the VP afterward, I said, “Did you see what you did to him?” And he had not seen it, and it’s like, this guy’s going to tell the best stories in the world. And then other people are thinking, oh, I wish I’d get a shout out like that.
Fred: Let me tell you a personal story. I went to an event we had here in town. Big event, the speaker was talking about how to give a Ted talk. He had given a Ted talk. I had not met the guy, but I knew who he was. I’ve seen him speak before I went over and introduced myself. We’re having a little chit chat. He goes, “Oh yeah, yeah, we’re connected on Linkedin, Facebook. Oh, you’re the. I wrote that book, ‘NO SWEAT Public Speaking.” I said, “You’re right. So I’m really glad to be here and looking forward to your talk.” While he’s giving his presentation and he stops. He says, “By the way, if you really want to learn how to give a great speech, Fred Miller is sitting right over here,” and he points to me. Holy Mackerel, I could not have bought that kind of publicity, Jim. It was phenomenal!
Jim: That’s another one. When coaches or consultants go out to speak, you’re networking with the whole room and there’s a technique that I love. You can refer back to the speaker before you, say something nice about them or you can talk about the speaker after you. Say something nice about them. You’re going to make a lot of friends. I always loved to network with speakers. As a matter of fact, when I was really doing a lot of public speaking, professional speaking, speaking to find clients, I started a group. It was just all my speaker buddies and we’d get together for a breakfast one day a month and we would just talk about things like you and I are talking now and and we would say, hey, I went out and I spoke to the realtors association last week. Here’s the name of the person who’s the speaker coordinator. She’s always looking for folks. That’s another way to do to get into maybe what I call the the culture or subculture of speakers.
Fred: That’s excellent. Then you can also talk about best practices. What worked here, what worked there, you know, the idea of giving something away. I’m sure that wasn’t an original idea with me, but giving something away, capturing their emails, doing that regular drip, drip, drip. That’s huge. And and the discipline of blogging every other week, I used to do a little more often, but that discipline is also huge. You and I just talked about this before the show. I’ll write the blog, but I’ll also put the audio into my podcast channel. That combination of written post plus audio post will make you a better speaker and a better writer. Guaranteed.
Jim: I believe that because if you do a lot of reading and research and you do a lot of writing than speaking should just come naturally because it’s in your head and it’s in your heart and you don’t have to prep for it. I mean, yes, you have to prep. Please don’t get the idea that you don’t have to prepare. When you speak about becomes part of you and you said it before, that you’re passionate about it, that trumps everything. Don’t have to be in this place where, Oh, I have to have an outline and I have to do this. I have to do that. Oh my goodness. Where do I even start? No, you can just get up and you get to the point where you can just talk about it.
Fred: Yeah. Passion trumps everything. If you take passion plus knowledge, do your research, plus technique. You will own the audience. Absolutely.
Jim: My wife’s a psychologist so we go to the conferences. I hang out in the room or play golf and she goes to the meetings. Right. But occasionally I’ll go to the meetings because it’s an interesting topic and spouses can sit in. What I saw was the most dynamic speakers, I’d like you to come in on this. The people that held my attention the most were the people without the slides. The people with the slides that were just going through them. Okay. Yeah. There’s some stuff here, but people that just really got my attention and that I remember they were just up there and they didn’t even, they didn’t hide behind the podium. No slides. Man, what a presentation.
Fred: Well, they must have been really good and I assume those presentations were 15 minutes or less, or am I incorrect?
Jim: Some of them were and some of them were longer.
Fred: Okay, well, two theories on it. First of all, they had to be really, really good. Holding people’s attention is tough. I mean there’s a reason that Ted talks are 18 minutes or less. There’s a reason that when apple introduced the newest iPhones, they have four or five speakers. They each spoke for 10 minutes, no longer. We have the attention span of a gnat. So let me throw out another theory for those who aren’t as good as those speakers that you remember. We have three learning styles. Most of us are visual learners, sixty five percent. 35 percent are auditory learners. They learn by listening. They listen to your podcast and the rest are kinesthetic. They’ll be sitting there with a notebook writing everything down. That’s how they learn. If you can combine two learning styles, that increases the odds, the audience will GET IT! So my suggestion for some not as good as those speakers who spoke, as they say, naked without slides, is that use high quality universally understood images and provide the text with their voice. When they put up that image, put it up for just a moment. Make it go dark so the audience looks at the speaker because nonverbal communication trumps verbal. The facts are if somebody just listens and hears something three days later they’ll remember, I can’t, I don’t have the figure in from me. I think it was like 10 percent. If they’ve seen and heard something they’ll remember 35 or 40 percent three days later. We think in terms of images.
Fred: For some people using images, I’m against bullet points. Bullet points kill, kill the bullet points. Nobody comes to read your presentation. Plus, and this is really important, we can’t multitask. If they’re reading your bullet point, you’re reading a different spot and there’s a disconnect. Let me make one more point. If you ever watch Cable News; CNN, Fox or MSNBC, and that little ticker tape comes across the bottom of the screen. Have you ever seen that, Jim? If you’re reading that ticker tape, you have no idea what they’re talking about. We cannot multitask and to prove it, as soon as the commercial comes on, that ticker tape is gone. The advertiser would never pay because they know you’re not listening and watching their commercial. So two theories, you saw some great speakers and that’s dynamite to be able to do that. On the other hand, for some people, having those images can actually enhance their presentation and help the people GET IT!
Jim: Love it. You mentioned some things earlier on that I think people might want them. You have some templates. If somebody wants to grab those, where would they go?
Fred: Thank you for asking. Go to NoSweatPublicSpeaking.com, click on the link that says Blog, because most of those templates are listed on the right hand column or email me: Fred@NoSweatPublicSpeaking.com. I’ll send them.
Jim: I will put that in the show notes. Well, Fred, this has been great. I really enjoyed this. I hope that the people listening got a lot out of it and I think they did.
Fred: Well, you did a great job, Jim. Always a pleasure being with you.
Jim: Well, that’s all the time we have today. This is Jim Macraigh for the high income coaching podcasts.
About the Author
Fred E. Miller is a speaker, an international coach, and the author of the books, “NO SWEAT Public Speaking!” and“NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”
Businesses, Individuals, and Organizations hire him because they want to improve their Networking, Public Speaking, and Presentation Skills.
They do this because they know: Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.
They also know: We perceive really great speakers to be Experts, and we like to work with Experts.
He shows them how to: Develop, Practice, and Deliver ‘Knock Your Socks Off Presentations!’ with – NO SWEAT!
- Keynote Speaker
- Workshop Facilitator
- Breakout Sessions
- Personal and Group Public Speaking and Presentation Coaching
- Lessening The Fear of Public Speaking with – NO SWEAT!
- Crafting Your Elevator Speech, Floor by Floor with – NO SWEAT!
- Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.
- We are All Self-Employed!
Contact me: Fred@NoSweatPublicSpeaking.com