What if it was possible for you to give a speech that had your audience members glued to their seats from beginning to end, and most importantly, get the most value from your message?
If you do any amount of speaking using your voice, you are probably involved in public speaking. Every time you are involved in verbal communication (most commonly) with a group of friends or family, or even colleagues, think of yourself as giving a speech. I once heard Patricia Fripp, world renowned professional speaker say: “Life is a series of sales situations.” Indeed, every time you are communicating with someone or a group, you are either selling, or being sold.
Even though most speaking situations are extemporaneous and impromptu, the stakes are usually not as high as for prepared speeches. For those situations where you will have time to prepare speeches to be addressed to an audience, regardless of the size, below are five easy ways to make those speech content memorable.
Muriel Rukeyser said “The world is not made up of atoms, it is made up of stories.” People don’t remember facts as much as they remember stories. Facts are boring, excepts when they are made relevant through stories that help anchor your points in the audience’s mind. Keep a personal story book and go through your story book every time you are preparing for a speech and need inspiration for relevant and memorable content.
Memorizing one or two quotes when preparing for a speech is never to hard. Some things have been said so well in the past by “famous” people that there is no need to rephrase or tell them any differently. The fact exceptional and popularly known achievers said things demonstrates to your audience that you did research, and that you read wide. In general, most quotable sayings are memorable. If you have a hard time memorizing quotes, try quotes that rhyme. They are easier to memorize.
Find statistics relevant to your audience and topic, and make them impactful. For example, instead of saying “According to the W.H.O., 75% of the American population suffers from glossophobia,” say “You are seated in a row with 9 other people by your sides. According to the W.H.O., about 7 of the people on your row suffer from public speaking anxiety. Which group are you in?” Stating statistics in this way makes them much more memorable.
A metaphor could be a word or phrase which means one subject and is employed to emphasize another subject to touch on their similarities. For example, instead of saying “My grand-mother was very generous and kind,” saying “My grand-mother had a heart of gold and was sweeter than honey” makes a greater impact and will stick longer with any audience. You can visit http://www.metaphorexamples.com for great metaphor examples and inspiration.
You have have probably at least once witnessed a speech which sounded something like the following: “I am awesome because I killed an alligator with my bare hands. I am rich because I own a big house at the beach and 5 vacation homes around the country, and one abroad. I was not always handsome, but because I am rich now, it does not matter.” Every time you are preparing a speech replace the pronoun “I” with “You” as many times as you can.
The above example rewritten to become more memorable to your audience would read: “You would be awesome if you killed an alligator with your bare hands. You would be considered rich if you owned a big house at the beach and 5 vacation homes around the country, and one abroad. You might not be handsome or beautiful now, but when you are rich, it does not matter.” Any audience member will remember that.
Delivering great speeches requires quality preparation time. If your overall objective is to make a positive impact on your audience, do all you can to make your speech memorable by always including ideally all of the elements above.
Question: Which one of the elements are you good at, and which one do you need most work on?