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Using Public Speaking as Another Form of PR

Using Public Speaking as Another Form of PR

By stepping up to the podium, you can increase awareness of your business and yourself.

BY Al Lautenslager

Q: How can I publicize my business and position myself as an expert when I can’t always get my press releases published?

A: Public speaking is another form of effective PR. You probably don’t think of yourself as a speaker, but it’s easier than you think-and the results will prove it’s well worth the effort.

If a prospect wanted to meet with you today to discuss buying something from you, you would gladly meet and talk. You could probably talk as long as that interested prospect wanted to talk. See, you can talk. You are a speaker. Now imagine making this same presentation, holding this same discussion with a room full of prospects.

Speaking to increase your public awareness is not quite the same as delivering your sales pitch at the podium. You need to deliver something of value to your targeted audience, and you want to educate and inform. This type of speaking does a number of things for you:

  • It establishes you as an expert in whatever subject you are talking about. You become the resource. People like to buy from experts.
  • You are in a giving mode. You are giving information, tips, techniques, methods and ideas. You may even be sharing some stories that your audience will relate to and learn from. Your audience will appreciate this value.
  • You are being efficient. Delivering your message once for many to hear is much more efficient than delivering it many times to every single prospect.
  • You start and continue a relationship. Many people will want to talk to you after you speak or follow up with you in one form or another.
  • You develop a prospect list of highly targeted people to market to after your presentation. These targeted and interested audience members are more likely to buy from you than someone who has not heard you or who you don’t have a relationship with.

There are a number of places where you can speak. Many service organizations feature speakers and meet weekly, such as Rotary, Lions and Kiwanis. Toastmasters is a group that will help you with your speaking. Church groups and Universities also have guest speakers on particular subjects. Some chambers of commerce invite guests to speak at their functions. You can even develop your own seminar or workshop if you have the right subject and the right audience.

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