Monday, June 14, 2021

Speaking Tips for Authors at Hybrid Events

by Yvonne Ortega @YvonneOrtega1

This article provides three speaking tips for authors at hybrid events. The hybrid is one in which people can attend in-person or online.

The first speaking tip for authors at hybrid events is to prepare for the audience monitors.

You want to see both the faces of the attendees at the live event and the virtual ones The tech crew may set up a small monitor at the front of the stage, a large one in the aisle or at the back of the room.

I spoke on resilience with a small monitor at the front of the stage, a large monitor in the aisle, and one at the back of the room. At my request, a speaker friend watched me with the live audience. Another speaker friend observed me on the virtual event. Afterward, both gave me their feedback.

An excellent speaker taught a series on research at a hybrid event. While she taught at the physical location, five of us watched on Zoom. At the live event, the technician didn’t place the monitor in the right spot. At times, the speaker wrote on the board with her back to us. This occurred during the time of required masks. When she spoke, her words sounded muffled. 

Those of us online couldn’t see or hear her. The attendees at the live event also wore masks and observed social distancing. We could barely see them much less hear them. I recommended that everyone speak in a louder volume and that the speaker repeat the questions of the live participants. 

The second speaking tip for authors at hybrid events is to prepare for the slide monitors.

The slider monitor would show the PowerPoint, Keynote, or other format of slides. The ideal situation would involve two monitors. One would show the slides. The other would allow the presenter to see the slide notes. Technicians usually set up the slide monitors at the front of the room. 

Ask before your arrival if the equipment is set up for Apple or PC products. If a glitch occurs, have a plan B ready. At one event, the technicians couldn't get the slide monitor to work with the speaker’s slide deck. The speaker came prepared with a flash drive of her presentation. I popped it in my laptop, and she presented.

At a virtual event when I spoke on development of a virtual presentation, the meeting host didn’t know how to set up the screen share feature or make me the host. I did both. Learn to do these things on a Zoom tutorial or on Youtube. You’ll feel more confident.

Third, send a written introduction of yourself to the event planner.

Unless you know everyone in the audience, write your introduction. Use a simple, clear font in size 18 or 20. Sound out the pronunciation of your name. You may think your name is easy to pronounce as I once did. However, three adults mispronounced it. Email or call the event planner or session facilitator to confirm that he/she received it. Ask if the person has any questions and let them practice the pronunciation of your first and last name.

Karen Whiting gave me permission to share her experience with an event planner. Although it wasn’t hybrid, the tips apply in recovering from the worst introduction.

An event planner phoned Karen at the last minute to speak for a women's retreat. Karen agreed to speak. She took a hard copy of her introduction based on the topic she would address.

The event planner held the copy of Karen’s introduction in her hand. She waved it as she went through the introductions of the six well-known speakers who canceled. The woman raved about them and repeatedly said, "I know nothing about Karen Whiting."

She never did read Karen’s introduction. 

By the end of the weekend, the women said Karen spoke to their needs. Her book sales of about $600 confirmed their receptivity.

Karen told the audience, "I was the seventh speaker. In the Bible, seven is the perfect number. I was meant to be your speaker."

As Shakespeare said, “All’s well that ends well.”

If you attended a hybrid event virtually or in-person, what did you observe?


Yvonne Ortega walks with a small footprint but leaves a giant imprint in people’s lives. This power-packed package is a professional speaker and the author of the Moving from Broken to Beautiful® Series through cancer, divorce, forgiveness, and loss. Learn more at WWW.YVONNEORTEGA.COM

Yvonne speaks with honesty and humor as she shares her life and struggles through presentations that empower women to find peace, power, and purpose through God’s Word. 

Yvonne’s background as a licensed professional counselor brings a unique perspective into the heart of women. She’s a speaking and writing coach and the owner of Moving from Broken to Beautiful®, LLC. She belongs to the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, the Christian Authors Network, the National Speakers Association, and Toastmasters International.

She celebrates life at the beach, where she walks, builds sand castles, blows bubbles, and dances.

No comments:

Post a Comment