Legendary Hollywood producer Sam Goldwyn said, “If I want to send a message, I’ll use a telegram.” Yet, all great films – and good speeches – have a message. Some recent movies go on and on with explosions and car chases. They’re exciting, but at the end, the audience is often left with a big, “So what?”
In a speech, the funniest or most exhilarating story will be pointless if you don’t tie it into your theme and provide a lesson for the listener. In Hollywood, when action and thrills serve a compelling story and finish up with a heart-tugging or eye-opening conclusion – a message – we’re talking unforgettable Oscar winners. Ingrid Bergman leaves Bogart and gets on the plane with Paul Henreid in Casablanca because honor comes before love in wartime. In Slumdog Millionaire, a poor orphan wins on a TV quiz show because a hard life can teach as much as a school education.
In your speech, are you clear about what your message is? Your message and your purpose can be different. For example, your purpose may be to increase profits, but your message is to inspire support for a new, more efficient way of running a department or delivering great service. Your audience may or may not need to hear about your purpose, but they must hear and be clear about your message.
Are you trying to say too much with too many talking points?
Do you offer a message and then fail to support it?
Try writing down your message in one sentence. Then find strong stories and a powerful conclusion to support it. You’ll send your audience away with the answers to “So what?” and “Why should I care?
Would you like Patricia Fripp as your personal speech coach 24/7?
“I wanted a super bowl-quality coach, and I was lucky to be introduced to Patricia Fripp. Her help in coaching and scripting was world class. With Patricia Fripp on your team, you can go places.”
– Don Yaeger, Long-Time Associate Editor for Sports Illustrated magazine, Award-Winning Keynote Speaker, New York Times Best-Selling Author
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Executive Speech Coach and Hall of Fame Keynote Speaker Patricia Fripp works with individuals and companies who realize that powerful, persuasive presentation skills give them a competitive edge.