The world was already noisy online before the current pandemic. Now, of course, it is noisier than ever as it is just about the only place people can be.
Pre March 2020 much business was still being done face to face. A lot of people were meeting new prospective clients in networking meetings. Many people were attending events where they would make new contacts.
Now, very little, if any, of those things are happening. At least not in the real world. It has all moved online. And that has created even more ‘noise’ online than there was before.
So how can you stand out from the noise?
Well – it’s simple.
In your writing and your speaking – just be yourself.
Were you ever told off at school for writing as you speak? Well, forget that. Unless your audience is academics, do NOT write how they taught you to at school. It’s too formal for today’s online audience.
If you speak or write like they taught you at school – it’s not authentic. It’s not you. And the ONLY way to get heard amongst the noise is to be fully, 100% you.
You may have noticed I swear a bit. And sometimes a swear word will creep it’s ‘effin way into my blogs, and certainly into my speaking.
Whether I am one-to-one with you, talking to you on camera, or talking to you from stage – I am who I am, and you get what you get.
I make no apologies for it. And not because I don’t care what anyone thinks. But because I care what YOU think.
If you are my audience – then you love the way I am, the way I speak, what I speak about and how I connect with you. If you are NOT my audience then you might think I am some potty-mouthed northern bird, and you won’t like me.
And that is totally and absolutely fine. Truly. I am not for everyone. And, here’s the thing. Neither are YOU.
If you are trying to appeal to everyone, you will fail and more than that. You will probably appeal to no-one.
People need to hear YOU. The real you. Not the you, you think you should be.
As a speaker coach – one of the most important things I do, is give my clients permission to be themselves (because everyone else is taken!).
People have some weird perceptions about how you should be when you speak from stage, or to camera. They suddenly become all formal, or posh, or use highfalutin language, when all they ACTUALLY need to fo, is just be themselves.
You see, here’s the thing.
People can tell when you are not being you. Now – if they don’t already know you – they may not know what your accent usually is, but they will know something is wrong. Ask me how I know that.
When I first started speaking on stage my other half, Mr C, gave me some…feedback… about how I was speaking on stage. I remember showing him a video of me on stage, and he turned to me and said,
“Why do you sound all funny?”.
I had turned into someone posher than me, and looked and sounded more like a school-teacher than a lass from Yorkshire.
At the time I was a bit dismissive. I seem to remember telling him he didn’t understand and that’s how you spoke when you were ‘doing’ public speaking.
Of course, he was dead right. I sounded weird and the audience will have subliminally picked that up. And the point is – if they felt something was ‘off’ then they would not ‘buy’ my message. And if they liked the ‘weird me’ – then they would be disappointed when they met me. Does that make sense?
So, the moral of the story is – to be heard you need to be yourself.
Of course, there is more to it – you need some great content. You need some skills (writing or speaking or both). But it starts with being yourself. And it ends with not being yourself!
Go join the How To Speak With….Facebook Group for information about a very special event I am running where you will get the chance to be heard, in front of a real (if socially distanced) audience. Click here to find out more.