Showing posts from April, 2016

How to Memorize a Speech Effectively

To deliver an effective talk, speech or presentation by far the best way is to memorize the content and not read from a written script. This is because reading a script makes it impossible for the speaker to connect to the audience with eye contact, making the delivery flat and ineffective. It also makes the speaker superfluous, because if someone is just reading a script they may as well just give the script to the audience and let them read it in their own time.

But how exactly do you memorize a script? There are many different methods but this is the approach I use and the one that I use to teach other people in workshops and coaching.

Most important of all you should not try to memorize and entire script and deliver it exactly a written. Unless you are a talented actor reading a script written by a talented writer it will always sound stiff and heartless. People can recognize very easily when you are effectively playing back a recorded announcement because the rhythm is usually w…

Monetizing Impatience: the DeepArt Case

In my digital marketing courses one of the most popular topics is always the case studies showing the many ways in which a startup can monetize a product or service. Now I have a new case to add to my collection: the Deep Art painting tool site.

Created by five researchers at the the University of Tübingen in Germany, the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland and the Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium, Deep Art is a neural network based tool that takes any photo plus a style sample image then creates a painting based on the photo in the style of the sample.

My first attempt -- a self portrait in the style of Edvard Munch, was better than I expected but hardly a great success. The second attempt was more satisfying, reworking the same profile photo in the style of a Roman mosaic.

Two samples of the work of DeepArt's robot artists: one based on a Roman mosaic -- a DeepArt standard style -- and the other based on a self-portrait of Edvard Munch.
There are j…

Making Effective New Connections Online

Growing your network with people you have only met online is very useful because it gives you access to people you might never meet face to face. Since it is available 24 hours a day it also allows you to do some useful networking during downtime slots while you are waiting to board a plane, in the back of a taxi or just waiting for a conference call to start.

You could just send and accept random connections, but to build fruitful relationships online you will have to take a different approach. There are many ways to approach this problem but here are three practical methods.

Engage in Online Interactions. One simple way to start to build a relationships online is to engage in interactions with other people in online spaces like discussion forums, professional groups and in comment threads where like-minded people meet to discuss their business. Finding the right groups can be a challenge. On LinkedIn alone there are thousands of groups. Some are overloaded with spam and some are com…

How to Tell if Your Speaking is Effective

Most of the time people ask me how to become a good, great or awesome speaker. But you can be a technically excellent speaker and still be ineffective. So what's the difference?

The difference is that effective speaking has to result in some change. It could be that this change is inside the heads of the audience -- maybe the goal was to raise awareness of something. Sometimes the goal is to change the behavior of people, maybe convincing them to buy a new product, adopt a new technology or simply do something in a new way.

How can you tell if your speaking is effective? In real world speaking situations sometimes the change is very obvious and no special metrics are needed. If you are trying to convince your colleagues to use less email and you notice a clear change in the email volume after the meeting you have probably been effective. Or if you are trying to convince the management of your company to support a new project and they agree just after your presentation then your s…

Why Choosing Brand Names is so Risky

When George Mason University rebranded their law school to honor former supreme court justice Antonin Scalia they were perhaps too hasty. As soon as the Antonin Scalia School of Law was announced social media users were quick to point out what the university had apparently not noticed: that the two most obvious acronyms were ASSLAW and ASSOL. The rebranded school was quickly re-rebranded Antonin Scalia Law School, which becomes a much more acceptable ASLS, though I suspect rival schools will continue to call them "Asslaw" for a long time.

George Mason University is certainly not the first to make this mistake, though it is strange that they did not recognize the problem in their own language. Many other organizations are initially oblivious to the problem, as when the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China initially used the acronym CACC but wisely changed it to COMAC when informed by speakers of romance languages of the unfortunate association of the first idea.

Very oft…