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Kim Wilson
P.O. Box 4145
Hamilton, NJ 08610

E-mail: kim @ writefromhome.com


Dabbling for Dollars . . . .


How To Write A Speech

by Alyice Edrich

A speech is a great promoter of your business; when done right. Make communicating with your audience a breeze, with a well-written, well-rehearsed speech.

The type of event you attend will determine the length of your speech. Below are sample speech lengths:

  • Average speaker speaks 100 to 135 words per minute

  • Standard keynote speaker: 18 to 22 minutes (est. 1,800 to 2,970 words)

  • Motivator: 12 to 15 minutes (est. 1,200 to 2,025 words)

  • Ceremonial speaker: 5 to 7 minutes (est. 500 to 945 words)

  • News conference: 2 to 3 minutes (est. 200 to 405 words)

  • Wedding toast: 2 to 3 minutes (est. 200 to 405 words)

Your speech doesn't need to be fancy or extremely creative to work; it just needs to use many of the following points:

  • Address a target group or niche market.

  • Be more than just sales copy; be informative and definitely entertaining.

  • Have a good introduction that hooks the audience (first five sentences).

  • Flow from point to point.

  • Deliver your speech by being well-prepared.

Tip>>>Rehearse your speech by first speaking in front of a mirror, then gather a few friends and practice in front of an audience. Allow a little background noise in your rehearsals. The worst thing you could do is simply read a sheet of paper, word for word.

  • Memorize the main idea of your speech—not word per word.

  • Use outline cards to keep you on track.

  • Time yourself to make sure you stay within the allotted timeframe.

  • Speak using a conversational tone, as though your audience were your friends.

  • Give plenty of examples, don't just re-iterate facts.

  • Use visual aides to help you feel less nervous; especially if you have a complicated speech.

  • Find a focus point in the room. Pick an object or person(s) that you can look at from time to time to help you stay focused.

  • Don't fidget! Don't play with your jewelry or hair. Don't twirl your fingers or jingle your change.

  • Don't use "uhm," "eh," "er," or other sounds while giving your speech.

  • Be prepared for a Q&A segment, if warranted. Keep answers focused, tight and to the point.

  • Remember that the audience isn't there to pull your speech apart or point out all your flaws, they are there to hear your expertise and learn something insightful.

  • Have fun.

Tip>>>Mingle with the audience before your speech. They'll get to know you and you them, making them feel more like friends! It will ease the stress and anxiety involved in giving a speech.

When preparing your speech consider:

  • What is your voice? In other words, do you have samples of past speeches that scream, "you?"

  • Why were you asked to speak at this event? What were the reasons told to you?

  • What is the theme of the event you are to speak at?

  • What are the other topics being spoken on? (You don't want to reiterate what someone else is saying.)

  • What are the audiences' biases or hot buttons?

  • What is the main point of the speech?

  • What sub-points do you want your speech to address?

  • Do you have any information to back up the points you want to address?

  • Who is your intended audience?

  • What do you want the speech to motivate the audience to do—call to action?

  • Are statistics needed to get your point across? If so, what are they or where can I find them?

  • Is there someone you'd like to quote in your speech? What is his/her full name, the quote and the relevance to the speech?

  • How will these benefits meet the needs of your target audience?

  • What have you tried in the past? What worked and what failed?

  • Any poignant information you can provide to make the speech stand out?

Alyice Edrich is an affordable freelance writer specializing in how-to articles and Q&A interviews for the Web. To view her freelance writing rates, or to hire her for your next writing project, visit http://alyiceedrich.net.











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