The only line that distinguishes between a fantastic, memorable keynote and a terrible one is the speaker. A keynote is said to summarize the purpose of an event, the highlight speech that sets the mood of an occasion. Therefore, keynote speakers are in a big responsibility to deliver a good speech that incorporates the event’s very purpose. However, although a great plus, it is not a requisite that one has expert speaking skills and superb stage presence to be invited as speaker. When someone has the right skill set and experience, he might be ready to deliver his own keynote speech.
Without some background, it would be hard to wow people with your address. A successful keynote speech is not so easy to achieve, but it can be worked out. To really kick that speech, one must never forget the first and foremost step: the preparation of the speech. Here are some pointers on how to make sure you hit the talk right:
1.Understand what a keynote is.
You must first distinguish a keynote address from other speeches. A keynote may serve different purposes: business, educational, motivational, etc. It is designed specifically to unify the audience and convey the primary goals of the organization. Delivering a keynote is a major program task, so the more one needs to prepare.
2.Classify the organization and the audience.
What kind of organization will you speak behalf of? What are its values and interests? Who will be your listeners? It is necessary for keynote speakers to know this beforehand. It will help them choose the right words to target a specific audience.
Make an outline. This would help later on. Organize your content and make sure it is informational and in tune with the topic. Write your main points in bullets and try to create drafts and edit them all the way. Research as much as possible because keynote speeches require in-depth know-how on the topic.
4.Make sure you make an impression.
To make a moving, inspirational talk, you should mark the audience an impression. There are many techniques to achieve this. Quote words that will strengthen your speech. Use silence to your advantage; it has much more impact than you know. Stress your important points by saying it louder. Most importantly, your central ideas should be very clear to you. Listeners don’t want speeches that just go round and round without conveying a distinct idea. Keynote speakers can be clear by being concrete.
5.Inject some humour.
Share a really funny story. Show the audience a YouTube prank. Try as much as possible to think of ways to have an engaged audience. Most people have very short attention span and a bored audience is the last thing you’d want to have. Without people who will listen attentively, what is your speech for?
6.Use visual presentations.
Make a PowerPoint that contains the highlights of your speech. This way, the audience could see as well as hear the message you want to convey. Videos that are related to your cause would also be appreciated. Most keynote speakers use this to illustrate an important point.
7.Edit. Edit well.
Grammar lapses and unrelated ideas will just pull down your talk. Skim through your cheat sheet (if you have one) and check if you organized your thoughts well.
Keynote speakers do not have to go overboard with their speech, honestly. Yes, these pointers would help you not mess up on your first speech, but if there are next ones, try as much to be extemporaneous. Just let yourself out there and inspire with words that you know by heart. Who knows? It might just be your most fantastic unrehearsed words yet.