Basics of Public Speaking
~ A Step by Step Guide to Successful Presentations ~

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Lesson 11 - Using Your Voice When Speaking in Public

When you are giving a presentation, if you simply speak loudly enough and clearly enough, you will automatically sound confident. Achieving this is not difficult. It comes naturally to every speaker with practice. (So, join Toastmasters!) If, on the other hand, you are not very confident yet, try some of these tips:

Vocal Tip Number 1

Generally speaking, it is better to be too loud than too soft. If your voice is too loud at least you can be heard and you might even be considered "passionate"! But if your voice is too soft, you will fail completely to communicate.

Vocal Tip Number 2

Practice your speech out loud before you get on stage. If you will be in a big room, try to arrive before anyone else and test the microphone or any other equipment.

Vocal Tip Number 3

An interesting way to practice using your voice in a variety of ways is to exaggerate. This is why Toastmasters is so valuable - you can practice saying things in a strange way and make a fool of yourself, and the audience will still support you!

Vocal Tip Number 4

Try speaking in a very low, soft voice when serious. Try using a higher voice, and speak faster, when you are happy or excited. You can also try letting your voice rise or fall to see which sounds better.

Vocal Tip Number 5

Sometimes, try whispering to see the effect. This can be a very effective technique when you are saying something very important, but be careful not to use it too often.

Using your voice well can help you keep the audience's interest throughout your whole speech. By using your voice to emphasize key points, you will help the audience remember your message. So, don't worry to much about your voice when you are just beginning, but as you move up, use the tips in this article to reach a higher level.

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