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The Evolution of Virtual Speaking Engagements

Navigate the virtual stage with expertise. Connect globally. Tips for effective virtual speaking in the digital era.

Business
  • Release Date: 31 December 2023
  • Author: Speaker Agency

The Evolution of Virtual Speaking Engagements

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In the era of digitalization, the way we conduct meetings, seminars, conferences and presentations has undergone a massive change. Everything has gone virtual now, with speakers and attendees taking part from remote locations. In the post-pandemic world, employees are increasingly working from home and all conferences are taking place virtually. This has led to a boom in virtual speaking opportunities where people from all around the globe are connected digitally by virtual conferencing platforms like Zoom, Google Meetings and Microsoft Teams. Virtual speaking engagement differs a little from physical speaking as the audience is not in the room with us. Maybe you are an expert speaker or someone who wants to take up virtual speaking gigs as a side income. We're here to tell you all about how to become an effective virtual speaker. 

Virtual speaking tips to become a great speaker

Virtual Engage

To virtually engage with your listeners, you need to keep a few things in mind. Start by doing a sound check to avoid technical errors. Double-check your WiFi connection, camera and lighting. Wear appropriate attire and set a professional background. Familiarize yourself with the software you'll be using to avoid snags. Prepare your content properly while keeping your audience in mind and customize it to suit their varying needs. 

While presenting, speak directly to the camera to maintain eye contact with the audience. Be animated and use body language to emphasize important points. You can also make use of a moderator to manage the session. They can screen the comments and present the slides while you focus on delivering your speech. 

When the session is over, give them a feedback form so they can give their honest response and criticism for you to review your presentation. An additional tip is to offer fair and transparent pricing to your clients. Make sure you also offer pre- and post-presentation support. This can be sending them a PDF of your presentation in advance or reviewing answers to an assignment based on your presentation. These services will make them want to hire you again. 

Why a virtual Q&A session matters

Speaking Opportunities Uk

Virtual Q&A sessions are just like your physical ones but you need to pay heed to the specific needs of your listeners as you are all divided by a screen. Decide whether you want to take questions in the end or wish to answer them periodically after a couple of slides. Virtual Q&A sessions are a great way to capture and retain the attention of your audience as they are prone to periods where their attention might dwindle. Try not to speak for more than 10 minutes without some engagement with your audience. 

Addressing your listeners by their name is good practice. Quizzes, polls and surveys are a great way to interact with the audience. They can answer by speaking or writing their comments. You can clear their doubts accordingly as some might have a quick retention capacity while others may need a while longer to grasp the information. Getting feedback from them in the end will also help you assess gaps in your performance and improve your virtual speaking skills. 

How to seek virtual speaking opportunities

If you are seeking virtual speaking opportunities in the UK, here's list of best practices you can follow to find gigs. 

Start with your network 

Start small and make use of your existing network of past clients. This can be people who attended your virtual sessions or the organizer of the event. They would be interested in hiring you again if the need arises or put you in touch with virtual speaking opportunities elsewhere. 

Set up alerts 

Manually set up alerts on Google and all the major job sites like LinkedIn, Indeed, Monster, Glassdoor for virtual speaking opportunities. Narrow down your search area to industries you have expertise in. 

Join agencies 

There are a number of speaking engagement agencies who constantly hire and provide virtual speaking opportunities. Intel Engine, Call for Speakers and Public Speakers Corner all require you to sign up with them at a nominal fee. This is to become a part of and access their database for speaking opportunities. 

Research competitors

You can always piggyback off your competitors by closely studying what they are doing. Invest some time in learning what they are doing to attract virtual speaking gigs and try to mimic their approach. 

Don't ignore online channels

Social media has emerged as a dark horse in recent times when employment opportunities are in abundance. Periodically scan Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube for virtual speaking opportunities. 

Brand yourself

Make sure you have an easily discoverable, accurate and authentic online presence for potential clients to seek you out. Highlight your virtual speaking experience and have your own blog or YouTube channel where you upload snippets of your previous sessions. This way, interested clients can directly contact you. 

Keep in touch 

A key step is to keep in touch with other professionals in your field and build long-term relationships with your clients. Maybe your school or college is looking for an alumni to speak to the students, or an event organizer they know is looking for someone with your skill set. Doing all this regularly will help you find virtual speaking gigs consistently.

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