Episode 134 | Posted on

Secrets to Becoming an Extraordinary Speaker with Pat Quinn

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Presentation coach Pat Quinn @advancereach is here to break down how to level-up your public speaking and get results on the next @mktg_speak. Click To Tweet

This Week’s Guest:

Before you step onto a stage to speak, you need to have clarity on two big questions: who your target audience is and what specific problem you solve for them. Once you answer these questions, it’s surprisingly easy to put together a great talk (or webinar, podcast, and so on). It’s when you’re vague and loose with these answers that your talk might meander and not reach anyone.

Pat Quinn didn’t get his start as a professional speaker. Instead, he worked as a professional magician for 10 years before deciding to get a “real” job. He became a public school teacher and taught high school for 12 years, during which time he got a degree in brain research and focused on how adults learn. This combination of experiences means he brings both stagecraft and a deep understanding of audiences to his presentations. Tune in to hear his wisdom and learn how to apply it to your own talks and presentations!

Find Out More About Pat Here:

Pat Quinn
Pat Quinn on LinkedIn
Advance Your Reach

In This Episode:

  • [01:11] – Pat starts things off by talking about how to be a better speaker, and some of the biggest screw-ups he’s seen.
  • [03:59] – We hear about how you can know when you’re on the right track.
  • [06:13] – It’s a lot harder to sell someone a solution if you first have to convince them that there’s a problem, Pat points out.
  • [11:03] – Stephan explores a connection between what Pat has been saying and something he learned from Neil Strauss.
  • [12:55] – Pat digs into the importance of storytelling when you’re speaking, and gives specific examples of how this can work.
  • [18:09] – We hear about two types of speakers who nobody wants to listen to or engage with.
  • [20:18] – How do you give concrete steps that will help the audience make an improvement without giving away the farm?
  • [26:47] – Stephan shares something that he learned early in his career. Pat then points out the importance of getting your audience to remember what you talked to them about.
  • [32:09] – Most of the changes that Pat makes with the speakers he works with is shortening, not lengthening, their presentations. He then recommends having a mixture of short-term and long-term solutions.
  • [36:43] – The key to getting people to engage with you even though you gave them your best stuff is to include long-term solutions that people need to engage in.
  • [39:36] – Pat digs deeper into the role of storytelling in presentations, and explores one of the stories that a lot of people make.
  • [43:45] – What Pat has been saying reminds Stephan of Matt Church’s “pink sheets.”
  • [45:46] – What does Pat tell people who take the approach of awkwardly splitting a presentation into a teaching section and selling section?
  • [52:23] – The process Pat has been describing is called “seeding” or “embedding,” he explains.
  • [58:33] – Pat talks about whether he has a go-to strategy for the next step, such as inviting people to a call. He then shares a specific example of a story that everyone can relate to and teaches the point he wants to make.
  • [67:38] – How can people reach out with Pat to work with him or learn more?

Links and Resources:

Your Checklist of Actions to Take

☑ Know who my target audience is and what their problems are. This will help me approach them with solutions.

☑ Speak in my audience’s language to make them understand my message. Building a good rapport will help me get important points across.

☑ Take note of the mantra “sell them what they want but give them what they need.” Make my sales pitch provide high-value assets to my audience.

☑ Be ordinary, be extraordinary and show my why. These are the 3 things I should cover in the first 5 minutes of my presentation.

☑ Sharpen my storytelling skills but don’t overdo it. People respond better to stories that they can relate to but they will know if you’re bluffing.

☑ Film the audience during my speech to watch their reactions. Evaluate at which point they respond the most and the least to my message.

☑ Create a speech roadmap to let my audience know what’s in store for them. Make them aware of the bigger picture to help them stay engaged.

☑ Summarize key points at the end of my speech so that my audience will have key takeaways.

☑ Give the audience my best material. If I give them high-value strategies for free, chances are they are going to want to pay to get more from me.

☑ Make it a goal to improve people’s lives through speaking. Focus more on helping and not selling.


S: Public speaking is arguably your most important skill. For me, it drove eight figures in revenue over the last 23 years. It was the biggest revenue-generating activity–bar none. If you wanna up-level your public speaking, this episode number 134 is a must. Our guest today is Pat Quinn. He’s a presentation coach with 20 years of experience helping the best speakers in the world improve their effectiveness. Pat, it’s great to have you on the show.


P: It’s a pleasure to be here. Thanks for the opportunity.


S: Let’s talk about how to be a better speaker. I think the best way to start when you talk about how to be a better speaker is–what are the biggest screw-ups that you’ve seen in regards to not doing a good job.


P: This happens even before you step onto the stage or start your webinar. When I coach speakers, it’s not just on a stage. It’s also on all the online ways you can be on through podcast and webinars. One of the mistakes that speakers make is not to have clarity on two big questions: Who is your target audience and what problem do you solve for them? What I find when I’m working with a speaker is if you have total clarity on these two things, who are you trying to reach and what problem do you solve for them? It’s actually pretty easy to put together a great presentation, a great webinar, or a great podcast. But when you’re mushy about this, when you say, “My target audience is every living human being in the world, and the problem I solve for them is improve their life,” that’s not specific enough, it’s not tight enough, it’s not directive enough, and that’s when I find that you put together a presentation that meanders, a presentation that’s all over the board, and a presentation that—although it’s directed to everyone—actually reaches no one.


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