Anyone who speaks regularly knows that it is critical to show up early and make sure the audio/visual equipment is set up and operating properly. Nothing worse than giving a talk and not be able to use the slides you prepared because the projection system does not work or is not compatible with your laptop.
Tom Antion on his Great Public Speaking blog tells us that there is another important legal marketing reason for arriving early – it allows time for schmoozing. I actually try to do this myself each time I speak. Making sure that your presentation equipment and materials are set up before anyone is expected to arrive, will give you time to introduce yourself to many in your audience as they gather. Not only does it develop rapport, especially if you ask them about their expectations for the session, but as Tom points out, those you have met will likely be “rooting for you” and for your talk to be a success.