The key to delivering an Impactful Speech is to connect with the audience. The way to do that is to be mindful of the needs and priorities of the audience and to be seen as a leader who has the best interests of the listeners at heart.
The good news is the ingredients of a great speech are easy to collect and put together: analyze the audience, use inclusive pronouns, reference the present and highlight the benefits of your idea.
1, Audience analysis – Why should the audience care to listen to you? The answer lies in audience analysis.
Your speech should be worthwhile to cover for the time and money that your audience has spent. To do so, speak to the event organizer to learn about the audience, their age group, gender, and most importantly their interests and priorities. Essentially, learn about why are they attending your presentation? Once you do your homework, craft your message around those needs. This will help you connect with the listeners.
2. Use inclusive pronouns – One of the best ways to engage the audience is to use inclusive pronouns like we, ours, us and not you or yours.
We all want listeners to feel as if we are here to learn and grow together and that in no way we are leaving the responsibility of improvement just on them. When you say ‘We,’ the sense of togetherness comes out as opposed to using ‘You,’ which sounds as a blame game statement.
See how the use of ‘We’ made a difference in this paragraph.
3. Referencing the present – While delivering the speech, your audience will inevitably think about their present needs and challenges. And how you address their issues in your speech is another key to engaging them.
If your audience is thinking about a possible career in IT and you are speaking to engineering graduates (in the making) on career opportunities, come out with a speech on how IT has helped transform the world and how the demand for Engineers has always been on the way up. Be prepared for follow-up questions per the interests of audience.
4. Highlight the benefits – What does your speech bring to the table for your listeners? How can they benefit from it?
Answering these questions should be one of your primary motives. Once you are able to help the audience answer ‘Why’ through point 1, the ‘How’ part here will complete the entire loop. You want to help them take home some benefits that they can look forward to…only then they will be encouraged to implement your idea.
The entire purpose of you speech should be audience-centric. That definitely requires a bit of work upfront but the rewards will be equally enriching for you.
Source: Toastmaster Magazine