7 steps towards great public speaking

By Lucas Tamboryn

Last week, I was given the opportunity to present one of Start-Up Chile’s SUP Academy sessions. In these weekly sessions, presenters discuss a topic of interest with the participating startups. Previous sessions included growth hacking, metrics, legal, …


Throughout my internship, I had been talking to a number of startups. They all agreed that they were getting a ton of information on how to structure the content of their pitch, yet none of them were ever really taught the principles of public speaking. As a startup, presenting to be remembered is crucial. When you are competing against 70 other startups in a pitch competition, you need to find a way to put yourself over the edge. So when I got the opportunity to do a SUP Acadamy, the subject was immediately clear to me.

Enchanting an audience is all about psychology. It is how you influence people subconsciously that determines whether or not they will give you their full attention. Just imagine: we have no problem binge-watching Netflix for 6 hours, but it is so darn difficult to stay concentrated when someone (a poor public speaker) is giving a presentation.

As a presenter, how do we solve that?

1) Anxiety management


The thing that holds us back the most from being a great speaker is ourselves. 85% of people are anxious about public speaking and it is consistently ranked as one of our top 5 fears. Nervous presenters make the crowd feel uncomfortable, and an uncomfortable crowd is not receptive to the speaker’s message. Anxiety usually starts a couple of minutes before you get on stage. Your heart starts beating faster, your hands are sweaty and you may even become short of breath.

  • The first thing you should do is Accept and great the anxiety: anxiousness is a signal that you are about to do something amazing, something you haven’t done before and most probably something that will bring you further in life. In some way, you should feel happy that you are anxious.


  • Secondly, become present oriented. Ever wondered why athletes listen to music right before a big game? It is so that they don’t worry about all the possible future scenarios in which something could go wrong. They are fully immersed in their music and aren’t focused on anything else. Other techniques to get your mind straight are doing physical exercise, meditation and one of my personal favourites: tongue twisters. Just try repeating: ‘She sells sea shells by the sea shell shore’ 50 times right before you step on stage.


  • Lastly, reframe from a performance to a conversation. Musicians are performers, if they miss one note the whole song is ruined, it has to be perfect. Presentations are never perfect, so we shouldn’t want them to be. It is better to reframe the situation so that the presenter feels like he is having a conversation with the crowd. The easiest way to achieve this is to start off by asking questions to the crowd and consequently, using conversational language.


2) Appearance


When we are presenting we want to appear 2 things: confident and likeable.

We want to display confidence because this shows our audience that we are knowledgeable about what we are saying and that we deserve their attention. There are 3 key components (the 3 P’s):

  • Posture: your mom was right to nag about your posture when you were younger. Confident presenters stand up straight, chest out, never ever cross their arms and hold this position all while seeming perfectly relaxed.


  • Position: Where you stand on stage dictates your confidence. Don’t hide in the back, get up to the front of the stage and confront people.


  • Pupils: Keep your eyes on the prize. You are not presenting to the floor, your slides or to that one individual who makes you feel secure. You are presenting to the entire crowd so acknowledge that and give them the attention that they deserve, otherwise they will never provide you with theirs.


  • The second thing we want to appear is likeable. We want the audience to feel connected to us like a friend. Once the speaker is categorized as a friend, people will automatically create a narrative in their minds that supports the message that he/she is trying to get across. The keys to appearing likeable are:
  • Smiling: The universal language. It immediately shows anyone that you are not a threat to them.


  • Empty hands: The key here is being unarmed. If you have the chance, always present with empty hands to subconsciously make your audience feel safe.


  • Open arms: This exposes the belly, a very vulnerable part of the body and consequently, shows vulnerability to the audience.


  • Eye contact: It creates a personal relationship. Try making eye contact with a variety of people throughout your presentation.

First impressions matter: It is especially important to appear likeable within the first 7 seconds that you stepped on stage. The human brain is wired to either classify you as a friend or enemy within that timeframe.

3) Vocal power


Our voice is our biggest weapon when speaking publicly, unfortunately, many of us shoot ourselves with it. Using your voice the right way requires rigorous training. Some key pointers include:

  • Gravitas: You are the voice of authority when speaking publicly, your voice must reflect this. Gravitas is that tone of voice that implies that you are serious, without being intimidating. It is the default tone that you want to maintain when speaking publicly. It comes from the lower abdomen and can be practiced through voice exercises.


  • Intonation: The rise and fall of the voice is especially important when emphasizing. A trick you can use to get this right is, when making the transcript for your presentation, to mark the words you want to emphasize in bold.


  • Speed: The speed with which you pronounce words influences your message. If you wanted to make a point, for example, you could slow it down, build the tension, make a revelation and conclude with your point.

Intonation and speed vary according to the content of your presentation.

4) Vocabulary


A wise man once told me: “you should treat every word like it costs you $3 each”. You want to make sure that everything you say fulfills a purpose and adds value to your message.

“you should treat every word like it costs you $3 each”

When it comes to choosing between synonyms, you don’t want to say the easiest thing, nor the hardest. You want to use fancy words that everybody understands.

5) Personal story


Sharing a personal story is a great way to break the ice and create a personal relationship with your audience. There is a structure you can follow for maximum impact:

  1. Tell an anecdote. This could be something embarrassing to get the crowd to laugh and simultaneously feel related to you.
  2. Turn it into something intellectual to provide value.
  3. Draw a conclusion and set up an argument.
  4. Inspire the audience to practice what you preach.


6) Engage with your audience


As mentioned earlier, you want to feel as if you are in a conversation with your audience. Engaging with your audience is a great way to achieve this and will incentivise your crowd to keep paying attention to you.

The key to engaging with your audience is to make it fun. Some specific pointers are:

  • Use humor: crack a joke, get the crowd laughing. Life doesn’t always have to be serious.


  • Surprise people: get them out of their comfort zones (aka their chairs) and involve them. During my presentation, we had the crowd doing tongue twisters and voice exercises. Youtube video:

  • Ask easy questions: when asking a question you should be confident that about 75% of your audience should raise their hand, if you are lucky, 25% actually will. The crowd is lazy, make it easy for them.


  • Call people by their names: ask for peoples’ names and use them throughout the rest of the presentation.


7) Preparation


As a final note, I would like to emphasize that none of the above really matters without rigorous preparation. You should know the content of your presentation by heart before you step on stage. Beware that this does not mean that you should memorize the entire thing and just rattle it off, because the probability that you will black out due to stress is substantial. I do, however, recommend to memorize some key words as well as some connection words that will allow you to transition between chapters smoothly.

I sincerely hope that this was helpful to you. If you have any questions concerning public speaking or would just like to get in touch, send me an inmail or


Time to say thank you!

In the last few months we reached out to more than 200 people in 40 different countries to ask for help. Now is time to say thank you.


By Sofía Del Sante, Impact & Networks Directormapa_seba


At Start-Up Chile we truly believe we can change the world through innovation. Supporting impactful people and companies is what moves us every day, but it’s not something we can do on our own. The word “ecosystem” has become a buzzword recently,  but “ecosystem” perfectly describes the startup world: where only the perfect combination of actors and conditions will lead to the right environment for entrepreneurial success.


Collaboration is one of the main ingredients in this “perfect recipe”. Startups are meant to be global, but entrepreneurs are not omnipresent (yet). Nowadays, the way to help high potential companies go global is to build a network of collaborators with the same mission: to help startups change the world through innovation.


A year ago, we started creating a network of partners; incubators, accelerators and startup programs all over the world that want to help startups succeed. Today we can proudly say that we have found over 50 organizations that share our values. We believe that if we work together, we will be able to make a bigger impact in the world’s future.


Today we want to say thank you. Thank you for helping us identify promising companies led by talented entrepreneurs. Thank you for believing in our mission. Thank you for being part of the entrepreneurial revolution. And most of all, thank you for loving entrepreneurship as much as we do. Friends, we are sure that by helping people that want to change the world, we are changing it too.




SUP Alumni | Emprendedora de Start-Up Chile participa en MTV Disruptivo Fest

Un grupo de emprendedores de Latinoamérica será puesto a prueba para generar cambios a través del MTV Disruptivo Fest, que comienza a grabarse el 3 de octubre en el canal de Televisión, MTV Latinoamérica, para emitirse en las próximas semanas.

En este desafío la argentina Carolina Mandil participará para impulsar la startup eGlow en toda Latinoamérica, luego de participar en el proceso de aceleración de Start-Up Chile (Generación 13)  y recientemente Startup México.

La emprendedora busca generar alianzas con partners de Latinoamérica que estén interesados en ingresar al mercado mexicano gracias al uso de eGlow, que apuesta por ser la plataforma de influenciadores más importante de habla hispana; y por otro lado, promover los contenidos de toda la gente creativa del mundo digital. Además de que se optimicen las campañas y el cliente pueda ver reflejado en métricas reales el valor que agrega saber con quién y a quién le habla.

MTV Agentes de cambio, es un espacio para explorar, ver, oír y pensar de nuevo. Imaginar todo diferente. También es un reto para conectar con otros jóvenes con ideas creativas. Son tiempos donde los disruptores aprovechan las inmensas posibilidades de las nuevas tecnologías digitales para romper con el sistema tradicional y progresar con nuevos modelos exitosos de negocio.

Maximiliano Morales, consultor en marketing estratégico de Andes Wines , apuesta a que startups y empresas de varios países podrían usar la plataforma eGlow para  ingresar al mercado latinoamericano, ya sea en el rubro tecnológico, vitivinícola y rubros relacionados.

Video Pitch de Carolina Mandil:

Aquí + info sobre el festival:



Business Model Canvas Online Course Giveaway!

We all know the Business Model Canvas. It’s definitely one of the best tools to create and understand new businesses, and it’s a regular topic in our SUP Academies. But it’s always a good idea to recap and practice.

That’s exactly why Descola is giving away their BMC online course for free to all SUP Chile community. You can register to watch it now or to keep as reference in the future. Who knows when you’re going to use BMC again, right? The platform is in spanish and once registered, the course will be always available for you to watch.

So don’t miss this opportunity and subscribe! Use the coupon code SUPCHILE.





SUP Partners | Learn What Actually Works at Growth Marketing Conference 2016

If you’ve heard of growth marketing, you’ve heard of Growth Marketing Conference.



You know it’s the definitive event for growth marketers – nearly every thought leader in the industry has spoken for us or stopped by – but you might not know exactly what to expect at the show in December.

And honestly, it’s pretty simple.

We talk about what actually works in the real world.

Our keynotes, breakaway sessions, and workshops are just a platform for us to teach the specific strategies and tactics that have grown our company, our speakers’ companies, and – after you get back to the office – will grow your company too.

No fluff, no filler. We don’t have time for theory and you don’t either.

We only care about growth.

And we’re going to teach you what it takes to really move the growth needle this December 7-8 at Growth Marketing Conference 2016, in the place where it all began – Silicon Valley.

That said, we know every business – and budget! – is a little different.

Which is why we’re going to make it easy for you to learn all the growth best practices you need at a price you can honestly afford.

Just choose one of our 3 passes:

●      All-Access ($1,200): exclusive speaker dinner, conference pass, & workshop pass

●      Conference Pass ($799): full access to the conference

●      Team Pass ($499): full access to one of our signature growth workshops


And if you register (for any of these 3 passes) by Friday, we’ll give you an extra 20% off.

Just use the promo code: startupchile20


See you at the show in December!

ONLY FOR TODAY!: Growth Marketing Conference 2016: Special 24-hr Partner Discount!

Have you checked out the Growth Marketing Conference brought to you by our partners at Startup Socials?

Growth marketing is the new marketing.

We know it, you know it, and the world’s biggest brands know it.

And frankly, they just can’t meet the demand fast enough.

There’s just too much to do and too few people who know how to do it!

So those big brands – IBM, Adobe, Delta and many high-growth startups – are partnering with the Growth Marketing Conference 2016 to fill their staffing gaps.

And to make it easier for the best marketers and founders to get in – marketers and founders like you! – they’re offering a special 24-hour discount, just this once.

Save 30% off the biggest growth marketing show of the year and network with business leaders from IBM, Adobe, Delta, Facebook, Hotwire, Pinterest, Mulesoft, Intercom, Hired and many more.

Don’t wait – you only have 24 hours.

Your future growth marketing connections are waiting for you!

Register Now.


¿Cómo impacta la escuela de emprendimiento de Start-Up Chile en el desempeño de startups?

  • “Start-Up Chile ¿Una Escuela de Emprendimiento Efectiva?” es el titulo del primer White Paper de Epic Lab, un laboratorio de la Escuela de Ingeniería de la Pontificia Universidad Católica, que tiene por objetivo identificar causas y efectos de los programas que fomentan el emprendimiento y la innovación para ayudar al desarrollo socio-económico.


    Los autores son Juanita Gonzalez-Uribe  Ph.D. en Finanzas y Economía de la Universidad de Columbia y Michael Leatherbee Ph.D. en Organizaciones, Estrategia y Emprendimiento de la Universidad de Stanford


  • Read english version



“The Effects of Business Accelerators on Venture Performance: Evidence from Start-Up Chile” muestra que las aceleradoras efectivamente mejoran el desempeño de los nuevos emprendimientos a través de la participación escuela de emprendimiento.

Dado que la capacitación de emprendedores tiene un impacto importante sobre el levantamiento de capital, tracción de mercado y creación de empleos, pero aparentemente no en la sobrevivencia, parece ser que las aceleradoras de negocios sí tienen un efecto en la aceleración de nuevos emprendimientos. Así, mientras que la sobrevivencia de los emprendimientos depende de la persistencia emprendedora, el desempeño de estos emprendimientos depende del capital emprendedor.

De la misma manera que el capital gerencial puede ser obtenido en las escuelas de negocios, el capital emprendedor puede ser obtenido de las escuelas de emprendimiento. Al entregar capacitación, estableciendo hitos, impulsando el aprendizaje a través de colegas emprendedores, fomentando la experiencia práctica, como también permitiendo el acceso a redes de contactos, las aceleradoras de negocios efectivamente están ayudando a los emprendedores a formar empresas más productivas.

Descargar White Paper


How Does Entrepreneurship Schooling Impact Start-Up Performance? Evidence From Start-Up Chile

How do business accelerators accelerate? Do entrepreneurship policies actually add economic value? 

Results show that participation in the entrepreneur school (bundled with the basic services of cash and co-working space) causes a 21 to 45% increase in the likelihood of raising capital, increases capital raised by three to six times, and increases company valuation fivefold. It also causes a 24% increase in market traction (Facebook “likes”) and almost a 200% increase in jobs created.

This white paper was adapted from its original format for EPIC Lab from the paperThe Effects of Business Accelerators on Venture Performance: Evidence from Start-Up Chile”, González-Uribe & Leatherbee, 2016, which provides the first quasi-experimental evidence of the effect of accelerator programs on start-up performance, and on the importance of “entrepreneurial capital” in new ventures.

Download English version


About EPIC Lab


We are a research laboratory based in the School of Engineering of Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

Our main goal is to identify the cause and effect of entrepreneurship and innovation programs, and generate evidence-based knowledge to foster socio-economic development.

More information, please visit:

demo day gen 15

Watch our last Demo Day here!

The most prominent startups of Start-Up Chile Seed program presented their companies in front of judges and investors., the best way for buyers to determine the prices they want to pay, won first place and a ticket to San Francisco.




The 14 best startups from the 15th generation of Start-Up Chile Seed presented their companies on a Demo Day this past August 11. These were selected from a group of more than 80 startups, who competed to pitch in front of a select group of guests, investors, press and influencers.

The Demo Day is the final event of the 6-month acceleration program. Each of the startups has only five minutes to amaze the audience with their ideas, business models and market views.

In this opportunity, companies that presented their businesses were from: Chile (3), USA (1), Italy (1), Brazil (2), Uganda (1), Argentina (1) and Ireland (1). The industries that these startups represented were health, food, e-commerce, finance and film, among others.

After the presentations, the judges decided that the best startup was, platform that allows consumers to determine what they want to buy, how much they want to pay for it and for how long they want the deal. The first seller to accept the conditions, makes the sale before its competitors.

The prize for the first place was a round-trip ticket to Silicon Valley, San Francisco courtesy of Transbank.

In second place came Pluga, a tool that helps with the integration between the most used web apps without having to write a single line of code.

The third place went to Winsenga, an alternative pocket echocardiographic machine that allows nurses and doctors to monitor the health of babies during pregnancy and childbirth more easily and more accurately. It consists of a portable Doppler device that can be connected to a Smartphone.

The winners received prizes from Microsoft, Transbank and Veramonte and later enjoyed a cocktail with the other attendees.



Start-Up Chile Seed opens application process

– The acceleration program from the Chilean Government opened its application, running from August 17 until September 7.


– Startups from all over the world with less than 2 years of existence are eligible to be part of the program and receive USD30,000 for their business. 


SANTIAGO, August 2016 –. Startups from all around the world can apply for Start-Up Chile between August 17 and September 7. Those who want to receive this State subsidy should enter and apply according to the Terms & Conditions.

The program, which brings together entrepreneurs from Chile and the rest of world, lasts 6 months and the participants will have the opportunity to share with other companies from over 75 countries.

The selected startups will receive 20 million Chilean pesos (USD $30,000), as well as an intense weekly schedule to accelerate their ideas. This includes courses, mentoring and pitch training, among other activities. In addition, foreigners will receive a Working Visa valid for a year to come to Chile.

Start-Up Chile was recently selected among the top 4 accelerators in the world, and is constantly looking to attract talented entrepreneurs who can positively impact the local entrepreneurship ecosystem.

Through the selection process, the program seeks companies that have a global perspective and an expansion strategy. The criteria also evaluates the experience of the beneficiary, the startup’s market and its competition, and the advantage to develop it in Chile.

To apply, the entrepreneurs should access the Start-Up Chile website A video will be uploaded this August 18th at 1.30 (GMT-3), explaining all the steps needed to fill the form. The applications will be reviewed by experts in innovation, investors and entrepreneurs.

cover eslovaquia

Slovak President Andrej Kiska: “Start-Up Chile has become the most successful startup project in Latam”

The President of Slovak Republic visited Start-Up Chile Cowork space to learn more about our programs.

Last Monday August 1st, our cowork space was full of cops (Carabineros) checking every corner of the building. Everything had to be safe for the official visit of the Slovak Republic government, led by their President Andrej Kiska.

eslovaquia-7The mission, with about 30 people, heard carefully to our executive Director Rocio Fonseca during her 40 minutes presentation. She talked about Start-Up Chile and how this program is helping to change the entrepreneurial mindset in Chile and also creating an economical impact thanks to the startups growing in our country. “Start-Up Chile is an open source. We are willing to share our knowledge with all the countries looking to boost entrepreneurs and startups. We have done this with many countries, because we believe that the world need more programs like this, to support all the people in their ventures”, she said.

The President of Slovak Republic was impressed with the results of the program. Also he took time eslovaquia-5to talk with a couple of the entrepreneurs that were working during the visit. “In our country we speak a lot about support for innovations, start-ups, the business environment. With no big budget of 10 million US dollars (€8.96 million), Start-Up Chile in the five years of its existence has become absolutely the most successful start-up project in South America, and it’s in the world’s top ten. It’s a project that deserves attention,” said the President in an interview for News Now.