This public speaking training article will definitely help you squeeze more laughs out of any funny story, joke, or humorous quote. Try out these simple techniques at your next public speaking engagement and you'll see that you'll get more laughs than you did before.
When it comes to using humor in public speaking, timing is. . . everything.
Here are some tips to help with your timing so you can get more and better laughs when delivering a punch line:
1. Deliver the punch line a little harder and with a slightly different voice than the rest of the joke.
2. Lean into the microphone and deliver the punch line louder and more clearly than the setup lines.
3. After you deliver the punch line, pause and give them time to “get it" and laugh - the pause also lets them know that's the place they should laugh.
4. When you deliver the punch line, look straight at one person, right in their eyes.
5. Choose the person you deliver the punch line to based on having watched your audience, looking for a responsive person (someone making lots of eye contact with you, nodding in agreement, and so on).
6. Change your facial expression when you deliver the punch line: depending on what the funny-part is, you might raise your eyebrows, or open your mouth, or just make a “deadpan" expression.
7. Change your body posture as you deliver the punch line.
8. Make a certain exaggerated gesture as you deliver the punch line.
Now, obviously you may not do each and every one of those things, but that gives you enough of an idea of how to “mark out" the punch line so that you squeeze out extra laughs from your humorous remarks.
Did you detect what the common denominator is on all those points above? Take a close look, did you figure it out?
It's using non-verbal communication to enhance what you said with your words. You accentuate the humor with a facial expression, voice tone, volume, body posture, eye contact, and so on.
Should you laugh at your own jokes, funny stories and humorous quotes?
The “experts" seem to say you should not. I don't listen to them.
My experience is that it really doesn't matter. Sometimes I just keep a deadpan expression for longer than necessary and that seems to extend the laughter. Other times I can't help laughing because, well, it's funny!
Laughing along with your crowd makes you part of the group. Plus, sometimes you have to laugh to get them started if they're a “stodgy" type of group.
Use these tips at your next public speaking engagement and you'll get more laughs than ever before.
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My name is David Portney and I'm the author of the book “129 Seminar Speaking Success Tips" and the founder of the Academy of Public Speaking located in Redondo Beach, California where I personally conduct specialized workshops and public speaking trainings. Check out my website with tons of free public speaking training articles: http://www.bestpublicspeakingtraining.com/