Public Speaking: The Practice of an Audience-Centered Approach
Public speaking is not just about giving justice to your piece, it is also about addressing the need to know of the crowd.
However, considering this integral component would help things a bit more difficult for you. It is inevitable though that you consider the public in your speech. After all they are the ones, apart from the speaker himself, who make public speaking possible. Otherwise, why bother right?
There are various ways to treat the public but there is ultimately one way to make things more flawless in your speech, provide the needs of your listeners.
Central to this is the knowledge of the nature of your audience. While you may attempt to cater the specific needs, it would still be best if you try to focus on the general needs of the audience much in the same way that it is better to love you humanity than to love specific humans. You must always keep into mind that you are not in front speaking just to transfer knowledge towards a singular subject BUT to present the knowledge (whether they accept it or not in ways that you expect them to) to general public.
Analyze your audience, that way you wouldn’t have to be facing the risk of spoiling the primary purpose that you are in front of them. This may be quite hard and initial analysis could prove wrong if taken from a point of view other than the real point you must be focusing on.
There are many ways to analyze your audience. For one, you could look at it from the perspective of the talk’s content. For example, the seminar or the talk tackles the topic of self-esteem. It would be a safe bet that your audience is more likely to lack self esteem. Therefore, it is best that you go into the minuscule details of lacking self esteem from a person to person or case to case perspectives.
There must be a component of stimulating the interest of the public you are addressing. Feed them with topics that are in line of their concern and the issues you want to relate to them. Public speaking is a two-way process that requires the contribution and participation from both the speaker and his listeners.
You have to find somewhere the connection that creates the sparks. Does something make them laugh? Or does something make them more attentive than usual. Each audience has its own culture. This could be much observable by looking at a classroom setting. Some students are just indifferent with what you are to tell them and some are just especially interested on every detail you say. Thus, you must be very keen with what your audience presents.
To better facilitate an audience-centered speech, you must make it a point that the structure of your delivery is conversational. You must have that element of friendly connection without appearing to be too accommodating when it comes to question. While you may want to present your speech as natural as possible, you cannot still run from the fact that it is scripted. Thus, you must follow the flow of your script so that every needed detail could be delivered.
In analyzing your audience, you must make it a point that you see them as a whole and as individuals that comprise the whole. You must also refrain stereotyping the audience. Each crowd behaves in ways that set them apart from another set as much as each person ha sits own personality. You should then tap into their individualities in order for you to deliver yourself well in front of them.