Quick, Easy Ways to Construct Your Talk

July 2003
by Marisa D’Vari

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Authors who are invited to speak about their books and related topics at
associations, organizations, and corporations can create and deliver talks
that generate positive results with the help of these 10 simple tips.

Tip #1. Understand your audience.

To whom are you speaking? What specific information are they seeking? This is your “carrot.” As early as possible in your presentation, assure listeners that you will deliver what they want to know.

Tip #2. Start at the end.

In school, we wrote papers with a clear beginning, middle, and end. Each paragraph started with a topic sentence to be supported by facts and statistics. Although a good presentation follows the same easy, 1-2-3 organization, it differs in a few key respects. Primarily, write your conclusion first, simply because this is the only part of your talk that most people will remember. When you begin work on your talk, ask yourself what action you want your audience to take as a result of your talk, then address this action powerfully at the close.

Tip #3. Engage your listeners.

While our teachers had to read our reports, your audience may zone out. Want an easy, surefire technique for capturing their attention? Tell a story. Stories are popular because they help listeners relate your information to their own experiences or visualize a situation in a memorable way. Use stories to underscore key points throughout your talk–the same way you u…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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