Rock & Roll has the ability to change lives and I don’t see why business should be seen as drab in comparison. When I work with businesses I want to work with them, challenge ideas, adapt ideas in the same way Morrissey, Joe Strummer or the Manics did when I was in my teenage years
So when it comes to prepping for a business talk I think of the structure of the talk in the same way as you craft the perfect setlist
Involve The Audience From The Start
Unless you’re the keynote speaker at a conference chances are the audience are not there JUST for your talk
The audience may be there for networking and your talk is just an added bonus … or you may be one of 3 or 4 talks that day they have a passing interest in
You have to draw the audience in from the start and bring them into your world and often the easiest way to do this is by asking a question or referring to a story that involves somebody in the room
It shows you actually care but it also helps to show you the level of understanding that the audience are at and give you reference points for the rest of your talk
Bring The Big Guns Out Early
People need convincing early that the rest of your talk is worth listening to
In gig terms this is why one of the 1st 2 songs in a set is always one of the “hits”
In business terms this is why you need the hook to convince people to listen more
If I started off a business talk by stating “80% of businesses owners that use social media win little or no business from it, but by taking these steps i’ve worked with businesses that have got £7000 orders from Social Media” would you listen further.
Sure – and yes that’s true and you can read that here
Surprise Them With Something New
I’ve delivered talks for the past 4 years on a range of subjects from Twitter, Blogging and Instagram and i’ve never delivered the same talk twice
The content might be similar, the big guns are always featured – but I have to make it interesting for myself so even if I’m delivering a similar talk 1 month apart I was always add in something new for those who may be seeing the talk for the 2nd time.
Talks are constantly evolving, new content is added, content stripped out and I’m search of the holy grail of the perfect talk that’s interesting for both the audience and myself
If You Borrow – Make It Your Own
Subliminally when you read 5-7 articles a day on your core subject it is hard to stop other people’s ideas filtering into your own work
There is that saying which we hear every week on X Factor “You really made it your own” and there is a huge difference between delivering a straight copy and using something as inspiration for your own work
The Question Round aka The Encore
The question round of me is when the content of your talk really is tested
Are there a dozen questions because you’ve inspired the audience so much… or are they silent in a daze
Leave Them Wanting More
What do you want the audience to do after the talk?
Do you want them do sign up for a mailing list, look at your website, investigate your services more
Don’t give everything away in one talk – leave them wanting more!!!
And that’s how you prep the perfect setlist / talk – Delivery of course is something for another blog!