Tips for Applying to Speak at SmartBear Connect
Submitting any kind of application can be intimidating. Whether it be for a job, school, or to speak at SmartBear Connect, it’s hard to open yourself up to judgement from others. Maybe you’ve been putting off your application to speak at Connect because the process has you a little stumped, but don’t worry too much; we’re here to help you construct your most effective application. These tips will help you frame your talk to clearly communicate your aims and objectives, as well as flesh out your value proposition.
No matter what anyone says, your title is important. This is the first impression that people will have of your talk! You want to be able to capture people’s attention and generate curiosity.
Make sure to incorporate your topic into your title, whether it be through keywords or themes. Sometimes this is a missed opportunity; chances are, the audience won’t want to commit to sitting through a talk if they don’t know what it’s about.
Additionally, try to convey the “So What?” Why should people attend your talk? What can they gain from your insights? Communicating the benefits of your talk will capture attention and convey value.
Before you start writing your abstract, do you know what you want to talk about? Make sure your idea is fleshed out and know the story you’re trying to tell. A story has a beginning, middle, and end, so make sure your talk does too!
Having a hard time coming up with an idea? Here are some prompts that might jumpstart your creative storytelling:
- Tips for using SmartBear tools that you’ve learned along the way
- Your experience developing widely-used APIs
- Transitioning from manual to automated testing
- What makes your team unique compared to other developers/testers?
Be sure to include takeaways that people will walk away from your presentation with. Similar to the “So What?” in your title, be explicit in the value-add that your talk provides. Including action items for your audience can make your topic more relatable. Also, keep your audience in mind to ensure takeaways aren’t too broad, nor too specific.
Speak in the present tense! “This presentation discusses…” is more effective and concrete than “I will talk about…” You’ll sound confident in your topic and not like you’re shying away from it.
Once you’ve written your abstract, review it and get feedback from colleagues and peers. Review it, and then review it again for good measure. Think it’s polished and perfect? Read the whole thing out loud before submitting.
Now that you’re prepped with tips and best practices for submitting to present, go forth and apply these to your application to become a speaker at SmartBear Connect! But remember, the deadline to apply is May 15th, so act fast.
Looking forward to reading some standout applications!