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5 Public Speaking Tips that Build Relationships


Relationships are tough. Public speaking is tough too. Relationships take a lot of work to build and maintain. If we don't do the work, then a break-up is inevitable. Just like any relationship, a speaker needs to continually build a connection with the audience! Here are 5 quick public speaking tips to successful build relationships with an audience.

  1. Tune into station WIIFM – What's in it for me? Anyone who is listening to a presentation wants to know what they are going to get out of it. Tell the audience up front what they can expect to learn, feel, do or understand from your presentation and how it benefits them.
  2. Tell a story  – Storytelling is the best way to connect with people. It allows others to get to know you and transports them to a world where the audience can relate to you.
  3. Practice, Practice, Practice – The quickest way to ruin a relationship with an audience is not to rehearse. It shows that you didn't care to prepare.
  4. Be Authentic  – Check out my 3 tips to becoming an authentic speaker and remember to be yourself when speaking. Embrace your quirks and let your sense of humor shine! Being yourself is the best way to build a lasting relationship with your audience.
  5. Make eye contact – For beginning speakers, this is a difficult task – heck for seasoned speakers this can be hard for too! Making eye contact allows you to connect with your audience. They can experience your speech through your eyes.


What are your public speaking tips that build relationships? Take a moment to comment here or on the Relationally Speaking Facebook page

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6 responses to “5 Public Speaking Tips that Build Relationships”

  1. Adventure Girl says:

    So true. The lecture I attended on Friday missed the boat on almost all of these points. I couldn't wait until it was over & it was a subject I am interested in.

  2. Michelle Mazur, Ph.D. says:

    That is really sad when you are genuinely interested in a topic and the speaker can't capture your attention. You are in the speaker's corner and want to be engage – but he or she does nothing to capitalize on it!

  3. Unknown says:

    I watched one of the GOP debates and noticed a significant difference in eye contact between the candidates. Romney would hold the gaze of the moderator or one of the other candidates. Gingrich and Santorum both spent a lot of time looking down while they were talking. Santorum also had shifty eyes. Without the sound on, Romney looked more impressive, just from his eye contact.

    Mark Morden

  4. Michelle Mazur, Ph.D. says:

    Mark, I noticed that too. Romney does seem more engaging on camera than Newt/Santorum. Eye contact is the best way to captivate the audience and connect with them. Not meeting other's gaze is a way to alienate and look disconnected.

  5. Eye contact helps overcome stage fright | Donn King's Corner says:

    […] for a speaker, even experienced ones. (One place I just saw it is in the very good article “5 Public Speaking Tips that Build Relationships.”) I agree! But I also want to push a little beyond the initial resistance we have to […]

  6. LISTEN UP! THE MOST POWERFUL COMMUNICATION SKILL | Enlightened Entrepreneur Blog says:

    […] will keep you keyed in to the other person and help you pay attention. Eye contact is not just for speakers, it is for listeners […]

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