Newspapers are not dead. That said, they have certainly had to reshape their business model to survive over the past decade. But we’re living in a digitally obsessed world where news is shared on many platforms and not only from traditional media outlets. So, let’s talk about how to make the most of the modern media landscape.
Newspapers were once the undisputed main source of news, and the cornerstone of authority for everything from fashion styles to business and economics.
But those days have passed and newspapers have paid the price through lost subscriptions and fewer clicks – most people get their news online, and not just from newspapers. All mainstream media have embraced digital channels, and social media too.
The good news is that because we can all access and create news through our own channels, there are now numerous ways you can reach your audience without traditional media. The downside is that it can be harder to grab attention and hold it because there is so much more content out there – on websites, blogs, and social media platforms such as LinkedIn.
That’s why, when you are embarking on a media or communications strategy, you need to brush up your skills – across all areas.
You need to be able to articulate your messages quickly, give a good quote, and present well via radio and audio-visual mediums. In a digital world, it’s important to be relevant and it’s even more important to be clear and concise.
People don’t read as much as they used to – we see that rise of “snack journalism” with smaller news pieces we can read and understand in a few moments An 800-word blog (like this one) is good for your website, and you might even be successful in getting an op-ed piece in your industry publication, or the opportunity to provide a guest column in a newspaper or a business group newsletter, but in any space that’s not an off-shoot of a traditional print medium, then getting your message out will require good editing skills and some innovation.
Think 100 words max and get creative when it comes to how you package up your message and deliver it.
You also need to decide where you’re delivering it – you’ve got lots of choices, but a message can fall flat if you don’t embrace the style of the medium you’re using.
TikTok is not the same as LinkedIn – sure, that’s obvious. But it also means that you can’t just produce one piece of content and share it in several places. I’ve said this before too – delivering a podcast is also very different from fronting a video.
Video content formats are becoming increasingly popular as we become time-poor. Podcasts are easy to listen to in the car, while you’re doing the grocery shopping, at the gym, or cooking dinner. You can watch a video from the sidelines of soccer training, or while you’re waiting for a train, a plane … from the backseat of an Uber. You get the idea.
With this in mind, then at some point down the track, you’re going to have to get comfortable presenting in front of a camera.
During the pandemic lockdowns, endless Zoom calls gave us all a bit of training …. But slick digital content requires more than just fronting up with a great outfit and hair and makeup done.
You need to stand out, in terms of content and creativity, if you want views and shares in respectable numbers.
Presenting to video is not all that dissimilar to presenting to a live audience. The golden rule to successful presenting is to remember that your presentation is not about you. It’s about your audience.
The big difference, of course, is that on the video you’re close up and only you are in focus so you want to make the most of your facial expressions, body language, and vocal pace and tone. There is an ‘element’ of acting involved, for you to come across as confident, competent, and credible.
If you’re producing in-house then you will get several rehearsals and re-dos, but …. And I recommend this to all my clients – you really do want to hone your skills so that you can be a ‘one-take-wonder’ …
The reason for this is that as you build your own and your business’s online profile, then you’ll attract the attention of journalists and other kinds of content creators. When you collaborate with other professionals, live TV is a great example, you won’t always get a second go.
My experience as a seasoned speaker and former TV reporter has given me a great deal of insight into what makes a GREAT presenter … and how to teach simple tips and tricks to business owners and CEOs like yourself who want to get ‘camera-ready.’
Being comfortable in front of a camera or an audience is a must-have skill these days – it’s part and parcel of the way we do business and connect with customers and clients.
The pandemic may be over, but Zoom has become a vital tool for doing business. Think you’ll never be called to do anything more than host a meeting on camera? Think again.
Traditional face-to-face meetings such as sales presentations, meetings with boards and shareholders, and pitches to potential new clients or vendors, or funders are being replaced with AV technology. It’s cheaper and usually more effective for businesses to use these platforms than flying people to places for a two-hour meeting.
At Bespoke Communications we provide both one-to-one training and all forms of presentation skills training for teams. Contact us to find out more.
You’ve probably heard by now that public speaking is feared by most people. According to the statistics, we’d rather go to the dentist, or walk around in tight shoes with blistered feet.
Presenting doesn’t have to be an anxiety-ridden experience. Here’s how to nail it.
A fear of public speaking or giving presentations seems to be a common one – and while it has its challenges to master, it is a necessary part of most people’s corporate and entrepreneurial careers at some stage.
Technology and social media have changed the way we do business and the way we interact with our teams, customers, and clients – and there’s an increasing emphasis on being able to present with confidence. It’s just not good enough to say “Ummm I’m too shy,” anymore – being able to present and speak in public are critical skills for success.
The good news is that in reality top presenters are not born — they’re made. I discovered this when I interviewed scores of successful business people for my bestselling book: ‘Well Said: How to be Heard in Business and Generate Real Influence’.
There is just one simple thing you need to remember to be good at connecting with an audience: your presentation is not about you.
It’s easy to get caught up in the key message, the right words, how we look, whether or not we have spinach in our teeth or remembered to shine our shoes, etc = how we present ourselves needs serious consideration, but when it comes to the presentation itself, you need to forget yourself and embrace your audience. Eye contact, smiling at a friendly face in the room and making sure you are slowing down your breathing to be fully present in your body are all great ways to start that audience connection.
Many people overlook this very simple principle – and yet it’s the golden rule that will help you deliver killer presentations. Every. Single. Time. Whether it’s a new business pitch to a potential client, a keynote to a conference, or a snapshot of your achievements to snare a pay rise or a promotion.
Acknowledging that the audience (whether it’s one person or a thousand people) matters most of all also can help to stem any nervousness, so it’s a good rule to remember. They came to hear your experiences and learn from you so be kind to yourself at that moment when nerves may kick in.
Here’s another fact that not many people know: Most of your audience will only hear and retain 30 percent of what you actually say.
When you think about it, you can most likely relate this to yourself – even the most focused of us have minds that tend to wander … to the “to do” list, to the work phone call you had earlier in the day, to a meeting that’s coming up you need to prepare for. Sometimes we’re just admiring the surroundings or the speaker’s shoes and suddenly we’ve tuned out!
Now, that doesn’t mean you should just wing it! (Unless you’re TOTALLY confident that you can…).
Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.
Remember that little gem from high school? Well now is the time to put it into action.
When you are preparing, think carefully about the following:
Write no more than three key messages (sometimes one is enough). This should be easy after you’ve followed steps 1 and step 2, because you as you know WHY you are speaking, and WHO you need to get action from. This means it is easier to clarify WHAT you have to say. Structure your presentation around this key message, related to your chief aim, with your VIP in mind.
Other tips to remember:
People connect with people … Yes, they feel inspired by ideas, empowered by information, or amused by humour, but ultimately to be a successful presenter you need to be authentic to get your messages across so they can stir thoughts and emotions in your audience. So don’t be shy about letting your passion, drive, and charm show. Be yourself.
Remember too, that over-rehearsing can be a pitfall. Make sure you rehearse enough to be confident with your material, but not so much that you sound robotic or impersonal, or so much that you won’t be able to cope if something goes wrong – if your slides don’t move on, the microphone cuts out, taking a curly question from the audience – these things happen and being able to go with the flow is not always easy for beginners, but as you gain experience in presenting, then these won’t be a big deal at all.
Remember that real confidence comes from knowing exactly what you want to say – not necessarily word-for-word, but in terms of your chief aim … then you can let your presentation unfold.
I firmly believe that most people – even the most seasoned professionals – can benefit from some speech writing assistance and presentation coaching from time to time.
It’s important to build skills and keep enhancing them. And different platforms require different attributes – for example, video is all about facial expression, body language, AND what you’re saying. When it comes to podcasts, you can’t use non-verbal cues, so your voice needs to convey more expression and emotion than it would in a usual conversation.
It’s always helpful to watch (or listen to) other speakers you admire and to emulate some of their attributes, but having professional help means that you can really pinpoint areas you want to improve in. A coach might pick up on little nuances that you’re not even aware of, things that will make a difference between being a good presenter and a GREAT one!
If we can help you get your presentation nailed, please contact us.