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When we’re speaking to persuade, it’s important to realise that the most important person in the room is not us – it’s the audience. Yes Ginger dear... you say. We KNOW... you mutter. But really how well do you know what the audience needs or wants to hear?
In part 3 of Ginger's 4-part persuasive speaking guide we investigate how to find the right words to persuade your audience.
No matter how much I want to persuade my audience, if I don’t connect with their life and their needs I will be irrelevant to them. So… how do we get into the minds of our audience, so that we can understand what they want, what they need and how speaking can persuade them to change?
If you start from a position of love towards your audience, they will not feel that you are 'trying to persuade them', rather that you genuinely care about them and their needs. This is much more likely to persuade an audience towards your message than if you start from a position of wanting to manipulate them.
So, get to know your audience. I mean really know them. Here are some questions to help you:
From the exact moment you enter front and center stage, your audience will form opinions about you. Understanding their stereotypes gives crucial information about how to influence and persuade your audience.
Perhaps they know of you from colleagues; sometimes our reputations DO precede us. But if not then they will base their entire opinion on the way you look and the way you sound. The same speech can be delivered in many different ways. What "way" or personal touch, do you want to bring to your audience?
Once you've understood your audience's needs, put all the time and love you can into creating an offer that meets every angle of the audience’s needs. From a position of empathy, we can connect better with an audience and therefore become more persuasive in an authentic way.
As soon as you make a case you’re proud of, you will persuade with pride. Your belief in yourself and your words will shine. Give what you have to give… and work out the reasons why that’s enough.
One of the key realisations that help people to become powerful and persuasive speakers is that you do not have to be anyone but yourself. Find YOUR words that show YOUR belief in YOUR message.
If you've ever heard the phrase "Who are you trying to convince... you or me?" you'll understand how important self belief can be. If you don't "buy" your message or believe yourself to be an impactful speaker, then why should the audience?
Once you have a message you believe in that becomes much more important than your own ego. If your message is important, why wouldn't you want to persuade your audience to agree with it? After all, it will benefit them in the long run.
With a firm direction and pride in your persuasive message, the right words will come to influence your audience.
Curious about your current public speaking level? Take the Ginger self assessment quiz to learn about your strengths and weaknesses in 6 key areas of public speaking.Take the Self Assessment