What is a persuasive speech?

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A persuasive speech is verbal intercourse in which one person attempts to persuade another person, or a group of people, to think a certain way or to buy into a certain idea. A persuasive speech can have very long term and widespread repercussions, not only on the people who do the persuasive speech, but on society as a whole. Engaging in a persuasive speech when you are the speaker involves a lot of subtle and overt talents. On many occasions it is the words that have most impact, however some of the world’s greatest speakers are the ones who are able to leverage different tools and different talents.

What makes a great speech a persuasive speech?

A large part of it is to do with the words that are spoken, however there is also brings such as body language, delivery, personal charm, showmanship, and the correct emphasis on certain words. Some speakers are so good that they can manipulate the tone of their voice to make it sound as if what they’re saying it all with a great degree of emotion and passion. Sometimes emotion and passion on its own is enough to sway some members of the audience. When you add this to a great speech that has meaningful words, it can have a very good and very big impact on the audience.

Sometimes it is not the words, but how the words are said

A great deal of showmanship can go into a great speech in order to make it a very persuasive speech. For example, some speakers are able to use silence in a way that puts emphasis on the words that they do say. Some speakers are able to raise their voice in a way that gives the words a sort of climax that one might almost expect to hear in a musical score. Some speakers are able to talk fast, but are able to clearly state that words, so that the audience is forced to listen otherwise they will not be able to keep up with what is being said. This goes to prove that sometimes it is not the words that are said, as much as it is your ability to maintain the audience’s attention.

Some of the world’s greatest and most persuasive speeches are short

Sometimes a few words that are nestled within a sound bite can carry an enormous amount of power. Sometimes it is more about saying the right thing at the right time. The timing of a speech can sometimes have as much effect as the words. For example, the rousing Martin Luther King’s speech where he has a dream is certainly a fine speech and is spoken with passion, but if another person were to have come up with that speech today, it may not have had such a powerful effect as it did back then. Some words and some sentiments lose their power over time. Sometimes a short speech that is said at the right time and in the right place, can be just as persuasive as any other.

What is a persuasive speech?
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