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46 Public Speaking Tips To Boost Your Presentation

46 Public Speaking Tips To Boost Your Presentation

Are you looking for the best  presentation tips? If you have ever attended a TED event, you know that all speakers were selected not only for their research or story, but also for their presentation qualities. Here you will find presentation tips and creative ideas to make your presentation even better. Read along…

Presentation tips: let’s start with the first most essential 9 tips

After also joining Toastmasters, a worldwide organization for the practice of presentation skills, I learned a lot about structuring a training or presentation. Below you will find the most powerful tips for giving a presentation!

presentation tips

Tip 1 – Use different ‘channels’ to convey your story

How do we learn best? Below is a list of ways to learn things. You can try out all the ways yourself and investigate which way works best:

  • Acting / acting out (children are allowed to participate)
  • To experience
  • Showing a picture
  • Talking about it
  • Drawing or other creative processing
  • To hear it
  • Teach something to someone else

Tip 2 – Use the TOTE philosophy (Test, Operate, Test, Exit)

“Do you understand the game that we are going to play now?” Always check that your audience has understood, for example before playing an interactive game with the audience. This shows that you have an eye for the other and that you are not just immersed in your own story. In addition, no one can interrupt you because he or she does not understand the game, and the game will of course run smoothly.

Tip 3 – Use the technique ‘ utilization ‘ constantly in your presentations

‘Use’ anything that could be a potential disruption, and turn it into something positive and reinforcing for your story. For example, you can give a round of applause when volunteers come forward to arrange something technical but which could distract the audience.

Also think of a positive response to other disturbances, such as cell phones ringing and people walking in. You can also greet those events with a round of applause. You are then busy  reframing, or rethinking.

  • Everything is an example of something.
  • Use whatever happens in the here and now as a learning point for the group.
  • Does a participant from the audience mention something? Use it for real and thank the participant for the example.

Tip 4 – Use pauses in your speech and body language

Use strong, dramatic pauses, for example after, “Mr. Mayor … (look away for a break). You can also use your body for a pause effect. Move around a bit before you speak, and then stand still while sharing the important message.

This is especially effective when you are almost constantly on the move, picking that one important moment to stand still. Stop and say the important words. Your audience cannot listen to your words if it is already following your movements.

Announce, “This is important.” Then you convey the important sentence. Teachers grab attention by saying, “The following will be on the exam.” You can attract attention by announcing, “This is a tip worth millions.” At such a moment, a break is extra powerful.

Tip 5 – Use interactive elements

You can be very creative at this, but let’s take an example: as an introduction to the subject, you can do a quiz: give everyone two cards. One for ‘true’, one for ‘false’. Throw in statements on the topic and the last one standing wins and gets applause. The conclusion you can draw from this is that most people did not know that the point you ultimately want to make in your presentation is true.

You can also ask a very simple question. There was a TED talk in Utrecht, where the speaker wanted to talk about obesity and showed a picture of a fat and a thin person. “Is it about the man on the left or the girl on the right?” The whole audience pointed to the fat person, but in the end it turned out to be news obesity, so it was the thin person who was looking at his phone.

Important: feel free to be directive to actually get responses to interactive elements. For example, ask a number of questions at the beginning and also be directive, using imperative tune commands, to elicit responses from the audience: “Who in this room … {Question}? Say yep (really loud)! / Get up! / Raise your hand! ‘ Another example of this: don’t ask, but tell who can say something!

Tip 6 – Be a coach for the participants

As a speaker you are also immediately a coach. This tip includes the following:

  • Encourage the participants to make mistakes: let them discover what works and what doesn’t. If necessary, have them use the ‘as if framework’: nothing can go wrong. Do the first thing you can think of. What would you do then?’
  • Constantly check: who needs what? So keep an eye on the group and find out what the individual needs are.
  • Coach the participants on their goals .
  • Encourage the group in a positive way in every way you can.
  • A coach, also a speaker, always starts by making a report . Do not start right away by mentioning points for improvement, but at the beginning keep complimenting the effort shown by the group, such as: ‘Good work!

Tip 7 – Get into a ‘trainers state’: a trainers state of mind

It is important that you realize that a trainer has choice and freedom in choosing your frame of mind. That means he can always keep himself in a trainer’s frame of mind, especially with a ‘difficult’ audience. He can use various NLP techniques for this for himself. In any case, a good quality of a trainer’s state of mind is to have an alert state with peripheral vision in it. This allows you to connect as much as possible with everything that happens in the group.

If the trainer is having a good time, the audience is also having fun.

A trainer’s state of mind is also a state that is completely in the here-and-now. Use some words as a mantra to remind yourself of this: ‘Attention, Here, Now, Focus, Become the space, Become the group!’

Always breathe, and then you get the state. For example, do this even if you are stuck while presenting (and the audience will breathe with it). Know that you always have a choice in what state of mind you are in.

Tip 8 – Put your ego aside

Stick to the feeling in your back. Slightly lower: your lower back. Focus on yourself and your passion. Not “Do they like me, funny, fun, cool, better?” The paradox is: you do care about your story and the audience, in a positive way. You don’t care about your own ‘story’ when it comes from your ‘little me’. You also don’t care about the audience in the context of your ‘little me’.

Tip 9 – Use imagery and anaphors

Use eloquent language techniques, such as  imagery and anaphors. Martin Luther King used that: ‘I have a dream … that …’ ‘I have a dream … that …’ This is also called a triad. Put extra emphasis on it every time and use a rising voice volume every time.

Tip 10 – Don’t think of it as a presentation to an audience, but as a conversation with a person

Are you afraid of talking to 1 person? I do not think so. An audience of 1,400 is 1 person x 1,400. You talk to 1 person. You become one with the audience. You can address 1 person in the audience (while also involving the rest). So talk as if you were talking to someone in a restaurant. It’s a conversation.

Another 36 public speaking tips for your presentations

presentation tips

  1. Make a statistic tangible and emotional.
    Weak: 1,000 deaths.
    Strong: Think three Boeing planes crashing a day with no survivors.
  2. Use intonation. If you bring a large amount in a monotone voice, that amount will even seem small. So emphasize it loud and clear: THIRTY MILLION DOLLARS.
  3. After you have made that strong point: ‘travel’. This means that you move around the stage without talking. Choose another place.
  4. Use notes. You care about your audience when you do. If you don’t use notes, you’re basically saying you don’t care about them. Put the notes in a neat binder or block, instead of a loose note.
  5. Make sure you adapt your lesson to all representation systems . In this way, the visual, auditory and kinesthetic participants each get an optimal learning experience. Use predicates for all systems, vary your speaking rate and create a variety of experiences for the different representation systems.
  6. Give one clear message or learning goal: “I’m going to tell you what the key is to happiness. And how you use it. At the end of the evening you know how to use the key. ‘
  7. Or make use of a maximum of three learning points. Three is the magic number. The public will not remember more than three main points.
  8. Always give people a little extra or more bonuses. Unannounced. If you had three learning points, add a bonus learning point. This applies not only in a presentation or in a training, but also in a store, in marketing, etc.
  9. Use a prop (an object) to display or as a metaphor. You put props aside or off after use!
  10. Use self-mockery as humor. Always do that before you let humor go over others. A good tool for this is a blunder story of your own.
  11. Take breaks at tense moments.
  12. Metaphor : don’t express your opinion directly, but say something that you have experienced to illustrate your point. Or tell me you read it somewhere: ‘When I was on a plane I once read an article about …’
  13. Make it personal: tell something personal about yourself, for example about your own growth.
  14. Pride is a simple feeling to respond to in your audience: wanting to be admired. Find out what they want to be proud of and help them achieve it.
  15. Perseverance and faith is also a feeling you can touch people with. Show that you believed even though everyone didn’t believe it.
  16. Use hard statistics and images to support your point.
  17. Also use auditory aids. For example, let’s hear the sound of a crying baby (that’s very emotional).
  18. Create a rhyme or an abbreviation to pour your message into. If you’ve talked about a technique to stop wearing glasses, and you’ve talked about Thank Your Subconscious, Practice Daily, and Read Texts From A Distance, you can turn that into BOL and pass it on to your audience.
  19. Always ‘locate’ your speech with details of what the audience knows. This works well for humor too. Ask for the information or look it up. For example, get information in advance about the presenter or another person or something the audience knows a lot about. Then you use that in your presentation.
  20. Sometimes use a little humor and tension: for example, have a few participants stand in front of the group to demonstrate the lessons. To do this, take a hat and put the names of the participants in the hat, playing with the assumptions (implications) that it is a privilege to be chosen.
  21. Another nice example of humor is when someone comes in late: “I just said the most important thing about the whole course. It’s the difference that makes the difference. And it really is such a thing that can only be said once. Wasn’t it great? ‘
  22. Use the power of your presentation to sell something. It would be a shame if you didn’t. Before giving the pitch, make sure your presentation contains a number of elements: overload the audience’s minds with a lot of information, give lots of tasks to create compliance, put the audience in an excited state of mind, and then give the pitch.
  23. A vocal anchor is always useful. For example, when a joke hits the spot, you can say very exaggeratedly, “AND …” Do this a few times to strengthen the anchor. Of course you always try to post a strong (er) joke after the AND. After a while, the audience is already laughing at the ‘AND …’
  24. You can constantly say, “Finally … To conclude …” but go on anyway.
  25. Actually count the answers and tell the audience. Otherwise it would have been for nothing.
  26. Keep involving everyone. Even if you are specifically addressing one person. For example, if you have a conversation with one person from the audience. During that conversation, sometimes turn to the rest of the audience.
  27. Another interactive element: have your audience repeat an affirmation .
  28. Never be the last speaker at a conference.
  29. Stand strong! Your arms remain low, as if you have a pizza (low) in front of you.
  30. Make use of gestures. If you put a subject aside for a moment, move it aside with your hands. When you address certain points, you can, for example, use the ‘karate side’ of your hand to emphasize things.
  31. Do you really want to touch the audience with your message, your vision? Train yourself in the ‘Charisma pattern’. Start with low energy and lots of love to tell your message. Then add more and more visual and auditory language (predicates) to your speech. ‘We can embrace this vision, we can sing together, we can jump higher’ And keep getting louder until everyone stands up!
  32. Do you pick up your group (for example after the break)? Link it to something exciting by saying, “It’s showtime!”
  33. Design several small ‘win moments’ for during your workshop. Make it easy for your audience!
  34. Practice your presentation several times. Preparation gives you the luxury of being able to deviate and improvise. Prepare very well, then forget the words. Let them go. From now on it is all about your breath, state of mind, rapport and your warm intention.
  35. Do you have to deal with resistance? Then use the article about dealing with resistance.  There you will find all the tips you need.
  36. Use little hypnotic commands sometimes by saying, “Pay attention. You really want this. Remember what I say.”
  37. Don’t be too shy to allow questions during your presentation. Announce in advance that you are easy with this and that people can continuously ask questions. Plus, the audience remembers the beginning and end of a presentation best, so don’t end with a Q&A. Have the audience ask questions during the presentation. This increases participation and energy level. Of course you can also choose a different style and schedule the questions in the penultimate segment of your presentation.

Read further? Speak like TED (book tip!)

Wii Can You Learn Using The Official Guide To The TED Method? Then purchase the TED method. Would you rather just know the nine most important principles of a good presentation? Then go for ‘Speak like TED’

Good luck with these presentation tips

What are your tips for giving a presentation? Let me know in the comments.

About The Author


Hello! Thanks for reading these articles. My intention is to make happiness as simple and clear as posssible. By the way, excuse my English. I am not a native English speaker since I live in Amsterdam. Much appreciated if you use the comments to make suggestions on my grammar. See ya in another blogpost!