HOW TO ORGANISE YOUR MATERIAL FOR A PERSUASIVE SPEECH

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Preparing the Conclusion

Audiences tend to put a lot of emphasis on their first and final  impressions of a speaker (technically known as the primacy/recency effect). Because of this, it is very important to finish your speech with something great. If you have ever seen a stand-up comedian perform, you will find that they save their best jokes for the end of their set, for this very reason.

To end your speech with impact, you can use a lot of the devices such as: quotations, jokes, anecdotes, audience involvement, questions, etc. One of the best ways to conclude a speech is to tie the conclusion into the introduction. For example, you might have begun your speech by telling a suspenseful story that relates to your topic, but save the end of the story for the very end of your speech. Or refer back to the same quotation. Or refer to the joke that you told. Any of these strategies will give your speech a sense of connection and closure, and will leave the audience with a great final impression.

If you are delivering a persuasive speech, you might try a slightly different ending because your goal is not just to be remembered, it’s to inspire people to take action. One way to do this is to issue a call-toaction. This means that you specifically tell your audience what actions you expect them to take related to your speech. Another way to inspire action with the conclusion of your speech is to appeal to their emotions.

If you create a desired emotion within your audience, and then leave them with that emotion, they will take that emotion with them. For example: If you leave them feeling guilty about not-recycling by painting a bleak picture about the state of the Earth that their grandchildren will live in, then they might recall that emotion the next time they choose not to recycle and alter their behaviour.

Leaving a strong final impression is the most important aspect of the conclusion, but there are some other necessary steps as well:

  1. Making a smooth transition from the body of the speech to the conclusion is crucial. To do this, use a signpost known as a concluding statement. The most common concluding statements include: “in conclusion”, “I leave you with”, “finally today”, and other similarly obvious endings.
  1. Just as it is important to preview a speech in the introduction, it is important to summarize the speech in the conclusion. The more the audience hears your main points, the more likely they are to remember them. By previewing, discussing, and summarizing your main points, your audience will be exposed to them at least three times during your speech. A good conclusion should be about 5-10% of the total speech length. Anything shorter than 5% means that the ending has come too abruptly. Anything more that 10%, and the audience may become restless. This brings up another point: If it sounds like a conclusion, you need to finish your speech in a reasonable amount of time. The conclusion is not the place to add new material. The point being made here is that the beginning and conclusion of your talk are actually the most important parts. This is where you catch the attention and leave them with one final thought. Your closing moment is the main influential factor to persuade your listeners to do what you want them to do. Here are some more suggestions for writing the conclusion of your speech.
  1. An effective way to conclude a speech is to review your points and connect all to your introduction text. Restate the most important point of your speech. Connect it with the central idea in the introduction lines. For example state it in other words or use the rhetorical technique of repetition by repeating a few important key phrases or words.
  1. In a speech conclusion you could briefly recap the main speech  topics. Summarize the major supporting points or paragraphs. It helps your audience to absorb and retain all information, your central message and you make it easy for them to follow the logical steps you have informed them about.
  1. Conclusion writing can also be explained as offering the so-called moral of the story:
  • Give the ultimate answer on some big question or issue you proposed earlier or at the opening of your speech presentation
  • Show a benefit or valuable application
  • Restate the problem and provide your solution in two sentences
  • Offer them ‘how to do it’ steps; visualize a course, sequence or time path of action.
  1. Reaffirm the connection between the needs and interests of the listeners and your speech topics.
  1. Close with a dramatic but appropriate statement based on emotional appeals. Examples of this kind of a speech conclusion could be:
  • Recite a couple of lines from a nostalgic song, poem or quotation from a historical speech and refer to its similarities
  • Finish with a heart-felt human interest story or personal experience anecdote
  • Connect the public speaking topics with the everyday feelings and lives of your public speaking audience
  • State a slogan – transform your central motto, idea or principle into an easy one to remember.

CONCLUSION

Persuasive speech in public speaking is the art of using words to influence an audience. It involves directing, guiding or appealing to the  thinking, logic or emotions of an individual or an audience. Since the goal of persuasion is to help the listeners to accept the idea, attitude or action being presented by the speaker, the intelligent organisation of the structure of the speech cannot be overemphasized. This organisational structure is often accomplished by the speaker’s use of argumentation, rationalization, symbolism’s, and how the speaker presents supportive information.

In this article, you have learnt what organizing your speech is all about, and the important techniques of developing a good organisational structure for your speech. You also learnt that a persuasive public speech needs to convince, to change the minds of your audience with logical thought and sound reasoning. You were also informed that if you are going to change the mind of your audience through persuading them, you need to know how to implement the techniques of organizing your persuasive material intelligently.

 

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