Have you ever been asked to give a speech and not known where to start? Many of us have been there and it is a very nerve-wracking experience especially if the occasion in question means a lot to you.
At Speakers of Croydon we learn how to choose entertaining and engaging speech topics that focus on the needs and interests of our audience.
During our first Speechcraft event of 2022 our six Speechcrafters listened to an educational talk on how to select a speech topic…
- Talk about something familiar to you.
This is called personal storytelling.
If you are stuck for ideas try using this easy formula. Think about last and first, best and worst. You could talk about your last holiday, your first school, your best friend, or your worst job. The list is endless, cars, meals out, train journeys, shopping trips, you could go on and on.
Or you could try going through the photos on your phone to find things that amazed, amused or moved you. A story about one of these might do the same for your audience.
- Consider your audience.
Is what you are about to say of interest to them?
How could you make your topic interesting and engaging?
Think about what your audience may already know about the subject and try to give them new information.
- Get clear on your message
All successful speeches have a goal.
Think about your message. Define it clearly and repeat it during the speech – at the beginning and end are obvious places.
Once you know what your message is you can work backwards to write something that supports what you want to deliver.
Ensure you state important points clearly and simply. Particularly if it is a speech that is informational.
We all need to start somewhere. These three simple points provide the foundation for selecting a speech topic that will help you to sound natural, informed and engaging.
By Trudy Kuhn – SoC VPE