There is no better way to position yourself and your company as industry experts than to speak at a public function. Giving talks and lectures is a great way to build your reputation and get your name around. Most lectures are given at lunch or dinner meetings, Chamber of Commerce type functions and at professional societies or service clubs. It’s not that hard to get a speaking gig because groups are always looking for speakers to present. Also, the best place to speak is anywhere that potential clients may be attending.
The topic you choose to speak on should be directly related to your business, but be careful not to make it a sales pitch for your services. Your lecture should provide the audience with interesting and useful information. By giving the audience good advice, you are considered an expert in your field.
Don’t feel that your talk must be entertaining or funny (although it helps). It is more important that your presentation be clear, informative and of value to the listener. Just be yourself and speak in a relaxed, natural manner.
Get a time limit from the event organizer and stick to it, making sure your time allows for questions and answers at the end. Practice your speech to make sure it fits in the time available. Audiences hate it when speakers run over the time limit.
Public speaking allows you to make contact with people on a more personal level. You make a greater impression than through mail, email, or even on the phone. People get to hear, meet, and shake hands with you.
Bonus, most organizations give you a speaker’s gift too. Ha.