Informative Speech

Use this simple exercise to practice delivering an effective Informative Speech without fear.

This should be one of the easier exercises you complete, and might even be a great place to start. That's because you just need to talk about a subject that's really familiar to you.

Ready to show us your efforts already? Just go straight to the Form and submit your video.

Remember that your purpose is to inform, so let's be clear that it simply means "to give information to".

As long as your speech gives information to the audience it's an informative speech. So your scope is incredibly broad which should relax you right away.

Remember Rule no.3 "Don't be boring." (Before you ask, there are no other rules :) This type of talk can be dull, but only if the speaker forgets the audience (I'm sure you've had to listen to one of those). While your purpose is "to give information" you've got to remember that it's public speaking not "public handing out an information flyer".

In speaking the 'how' is as important as the 'what'.

An audience has a very short attention span.

One of my speaker trainers taught me that even if the conditions are absolutely perfect - the audience has had a good night's sleep, they're sober, the room's the right temperature and humidity, the lighting's good, the seats are comfortable, they want to be there etc, etc - even under these imaginary conditions, research shows their attention span is no more than 8 minutes. Of course if any of the conditions aren't perfect then it's less than 8 minutes.

This is a very useful thing to remember, no matter what type of public speaking you're doing, and particularly speaking to inform. Think for a moment what this means.

If your speech is longer than 5 or 6 minutes you must do something to re-engage your audience every couple of minutes. You've got to change something about your delivery.

You could move to another spot on the stage for example, ask a question, make them laugh, use a visual or other aid such as music. Anything to keep their attention on you and your message, instead of the hundreds of other things going on in their lives, that they may prefer to worry about.

Powerpoint can be useful here. As long as each slide is clean and clear and interesting and above all unique. As I've said before never, ever, ever, ever use a bulleted list of points on a slide and then proceed to talk through it point by point.

Just because lots of speakers have done it to you over the years is no excuse!

Instead make each point the subject of a compelling, visually appealing slide of its own. Don't ever worry about having too many slides - that's 19th century thinking! With Powerpoint you can display a slide for just a few seconds and it can still be highly effective.

Exercise: Inform Your Audience

  1. Pick a subject that you are interested in. You don't have to be an expert, just interested enough to go find out enough about it to put a speech together that doesn't violate Rule 3 (see above).
  2. Write a 6 minute informative speech that "gives information to" your audience about that subject.
  3. Practice it.
  4. Video yourself.
  5. Upload your video to You Tube.
  6. Submit your video by filling out the form right below this box.

Tell Us About Your Video

Here's where you tell us about what's in your video.

Just type the story of your video in the Form below. Also make sure you include the You Tube embed code for your video.

We'll do the rest, and create a web page on this site just for you.

Then you just sit back and enjoy the constructive feedback you'll get!

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