Whether a crucial customer meeting, team meeting or conference – in times that are dominated by virtual reality, a strong online presence is a real criterion for career and success. But what makes an online presence strong? To a large extent, the voice it is what primarily reaches the digital audience. Benefit now from 7 tuning tips that will make you heard on the virtual stage.
1. Hum – the simple way to a comfortable voice.
Have you ever had the feeling of being able to listen to a particular voice for hours? Studies show that especially full-sounding voices in a medium pitch are perceived as pleasant, competent and arousing confidence. But – how do we get to such a comfortable voice? An easy way to find them is to hum: start on a higher note. Keep humming deeper and lower notes until you have reached the last low note where the hum still feels pleasant. This is where your comfortable voice is, which you should mainly use – because speaking is so voice-friendly. Tip: Make yourself aware of your feel-good voice as often as possible. Hum a pleasant “mmmhmm” at every conceivable opportunity and especially before your speech.
2. Posture – how “sincerity” makes your voice vibrate
An upright posture is not only good for your back, but also for the sound of your voice. When you speak, your body is always a sounding body. Sit or stand upright while presenting online. This is the best way for the voice to develop and vibrate. Besides, you give yourself dignity and presence.
It is important for an upright posture that your computer or laptop is at eye level. A foldable, portable and ergonomically adjustable table mount is worth gold here.
3. Breathe – how proper breathing gives strength to your voice.
We breathe in and out about 20,000 times a day. Breathing is an innate reflex that starts immediately after birth. And while breathing seems to be the most natural thing in the world, many people breathe inefficiently.
You may know this when you’re agitated, scared, or when you’re about to sprint – you breathe up into the chest. But for many people, this is their normal breathing. They get too little air. The result? A thin, shaky, tense, high-pitched voice.
If we breathe into the stomach instead, our vocal sound calms down. How does abdominal breathing work? Stand up straight with your hands on your sides (in the area between your ribs and pelvis). Inhale and feel with your hands how the air you inhale pushes the sides outwards. Now you are breathing properly.
Wear clothes that are comfortable to wear when presenting online. This helps you to achieve a melodious, powerful voice through relaxed abdominal breathing.
4. Mood – you sound like how you feel.
Your voice is the calling card of your personality. It reveals a lot about your physical and mental state. Through the sound of your voice, others can tell how you are doing. When you are rushed or sad, your audience will hear and feel it in your voice.
How do you want to sound in your online presentation? Relaxed? Energetic? You have it in your hand! Tip: Go out into nature beforehand, sing or dance. In this way, you bring yourself into the desired internal and physical state. You feel good and you can hear that in your voice.
5. Liveliness – how you score with emphasis, speed, volume and pauses.
Do you speak monotonously, too slowly or much too fast? Monotonous or slow speaking is boring and tiresome. If the rate of speech is constantly too high, the intelligibility is reduced.
How to do it? Inspire with your voice and speech melody! Your lecture can sound like a rhythmic song. Bring liveliness to your presentation with the right use of emphasis, tempo, volume and pauses. Even if you speak monotonously, you can easily emphasize individual words or messages: such as emphasizing important terms by pronouncing them louder or reduce your speaking speed at crucial points. You can present simple and less important narrative content at a faster speaking pace.
Tip: have the courage to take a break! In online lectures, breaks are particularly welcome for listeners with less stable internet connections. But even with perfect technology, breaks are real design elements, e.g. if you want to end something meaningfully. A conscious pause while speaking feels like an enjoyable ocean of silence – and your listeners gain the opportunity to briefly think about what has been said.
6. Cork trick – what belongs said, say clearly.
It is particularly important to speak clearly online. An unclear pronunciation is extremely tiresome when listening. Make sure you have clear articulation and intelligible pronunciation, e.g. with the corking exercise: take a cork between your front teeth. Alternatively, the thumb works. Then speak loudly for two minutes. When you take the cork or thumb away again, you will notice that your pronunciation has become clearer and more precise.
7. Technology – good sound as a question of equipment.
Do you want to stand out vocally when presenting online? Then make sure you have excellent technology. External microphones, such as USB microphones, headsets or lavalier clip-on microphones are easy to use and certainly better than a webcam microphone or a built-in computer microphone. You get the highest flexibility and quality level with an XLR microphone and an audio interface.
These 7 tuning tips for your online presence are the first steps to increase your impact and success in virtual times. Do you want to tap your vocal potential even more? Do you want your presentations to really inspire your audience? Investing in individual training with a speaking professional can potentiate your success and make your lectures as impactful and heartbreaking as music.
About the person: Danja Bauer
With 25 years of expertise as a singer, presenter and speaker on national and international stages, Danja Bauer is an expert in impactful and thrilling presentations.
Danja Bauer, multiple awards, i.a. In 2020 at the international Toastmasters speech competition, helps executives and entrepreneurs to become enthusiastic speakers. She shares her extensive knowledge in coaching, workshops and keynote speeches.
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