Presenting like a pro – conversational confidence

Talking Digital Microphones

We all aspire to feeling conversational and confident in the way we present our videos and online presentations. No-one wants to look like a bunny in the headlights, reading awkwardly from their notes or a teleprompter *shudder.  There’s nothing as brand ruining as looking like you don’t know what you’re talking about or what you’re doing, and sadly even super expert folk I know can look  like this when they are speaking online.

The need for presentations exclusively online came upon us pretty fast in 2020 and it’s not going away any time soon. So let’s get it right. 

Nail your introduction

I always know the words that are going to come out of my mouth at the beginning of a video presentation. Very rarely would I not have any idea or have written or already said the words that I’m going to say.

Maybe I like the sound of my own voice, but I certainly practice just to know the first twenty five words. It’s about 10 seconds. I’m no scientist, but I promise it makes a difference to your confidence because you already know what’s going to happen. So that level of discomfort about video generally doesn’t exist because you know what you’re going to say. A teleprompter will not do the same thing, I want to make that really clear. Teleprompters do the opposite.

Teleprompters make you think you know what you’re going to say. And then you read them and you look like you don’t know what you’re going to say. Trying words on for size, getting used to the sound of your own voice and knowing what’s going to come out of your mouth at the beginning of your videos: it makes a really big difference. 

There’s an element of performance

It’s okay to imagine yourself speaking to a real human, that the black dot of the camera is actually looking someone else in the eye.

That element of performance takes a bit of practice. But I do know that when I’m talking about a topic that I’m a bit uncomfortable about,  I think ‘I’m just going to act like I look awesome and I know what I’m talking about’ and it works. 

Tina Fey in Bossy Pants, says that when she did a photo shoot, she was really nervous because there were all these beautiful people around and all this camera equipment and stuff.

And one of the things she said works really well is just going ahead as though you look awesome, and I do the same. I’ll just assume that I know what I’m going to say. I assume that this is going to hit the mark that someone is watching and the person that is watching is you. And that’s what makes me feel more conversational in my presentation.

Take some time to rehearse

Saying the words and getting used to the sound of your own voice and how words feel when you say them is a really big part of feeling conversationally confident.

So there might be a word that you’ve written in the way you’ve described what your business is about, and then you suddenly read it and think, oh, that just does not come out right. You want it to sound great. You want it to feel good. So some words you’ll find ‘yeah that really describes what I do’ and other words will make you sort of cringe a little bit and think, ‘you know, I don’t really want to say that about myself!’

Over To You

Practice. Go and test those words out. Introductions and calls to action. What are the words that really represent you and the business and the thing that you do the most?

Just feel genuine and you will know if the words are right because it feels different. You’ve got to trust your voice. You’ve got to trust that you know what to say and that you’ve got something worthwhile to say.

It’s so empowering and so important and you’ll really find your confidence grows every single time. So there you go. Three tips that I’ve used throughout my career when I felt really uncomfortable and unconfident and other times when I was just really in the zone and having a really lovely time, these three have really worked for me. 

Knowing my introduction, knowing the words that are going to come out of my mouth always makes a huge difference for me.

Allowing myself to imagine the person that he’s watching just one person at a time is watching a video. Just one person that I’m looking at down the camera lens right now, that makes a huge difference to how I feel I present is allowing that sort of performance element to be part of what I do. And the third thing is accepting that you have a worthwhile message to share and you need to rehearse it and get used to the sound of your own voice, because the right words do feel different and you’ll feel really strong when.

Need help with how to structure your video presentations? Get in touch today and we can see how I can help.

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