9 Ways You Can Make Your Speech Memorable

Make Your Speech Memorable

Giving memorable speeches isn’t rocket science. There are several things you can do to help ensure that your speeches are engaging, impactful, and memorable.  

But! Knowing what will help and actually putting that advice into practice are two different things. For example, if we were to tell you to “be funnier,” that isn’t exactly helpful.  

With that in mind, here are nine of our most practical tips for giving engaging speeches AND advice on how to put our tips into practice. 

1. Give your speech structure.Take the time to plan out what you want to say, and organize the information you need to get across into a beginning, middle and end. This sounds self-explanatory, but you’d be amazed how many rambling speeches we’ve heard. You want to present your thesis, offer evidence to support it, counter any potential arguments, and finish by summarizing your main points. 

2. Keep it brief.If you want to be a memorable speaker, don’t give your audience too much to remember. Stick to the main point that you want to make, and don’t veer too far from it. Shorter is almost always better. 

3. Speak at your audience’s level.The fastest way to bore an audience is by explaining things to them they already know. Likewise, the fastest way to lose an audience is to speak over their heads. Understand who it is you’re speaking to and what information they’re coming in with, and start from there. 

4. Use humor and drama as appropriate.Again, this is an area where knowing your audience and your subject matter is key. If you have sobering statistics to share, don’t shy away from sharing them with gravitas. And if you know your audience will respond to humor, look for ways to keep things light. That might mean incorporating funny memes into your slides, turning to YouTube for a funny – but also appropriate – clip, or engaging the audience in some way. 

5. Include facts and figures.Talking in generalities won’t help anyone. Your audience wants to learn something from you, whether you’re giving a graduation speech or a sales pitch. Make sure you teach them something of substance and value. 

6. Bring a handout.Especially if your presentation is statistic-heavy, you should never expect your audience to take notes. Instead, put together a sheet with the key things they need to know. That way they’ll have something to take notes on, and even if they don’t, they’ll walk away with the pertinent information. 

7. Read the room.Interacting with the audience may not always be appropriate or needed, but you should always keep an eye on how the audience is reacting to you. Comedians sometimes do this when they tell a story that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere – they’ll interrupt themselves and say, “I can feel you pulling away from me, but this is going to pay off, I promise.” The joke always gets a laugh while also reassuring the crowd that the speaker is paying attention. 

8. End with the call to action.If you want your audience to act, give them a reason and a way to do so at the end of your presentation. 

9. Leave time for questions.Being ready, willing, and enthusiastic about taking questions will help your audience get more of what they want out of you and give you opportunities to clarify points that may have been missed or misunderstood.And if all else fails, give us a call to learn about our executive speech coaching services in Chicago.