(The following is a guest post by inspirational speaker and magician Nana Danso. He is performing live at the Omni Hotel in New Haven, CT at 7pm on Thursday May 2, 2013. Click here for tickets and information.)
Tip #1: Share an idea worth spreading
Marco Tempest’s idea worth spreading is: “To willingly suspend your disbelief so that you can live a more optimistic life.”
Tip #2: Encapsulate your message in a catchphrase of 10 or fewer words
If you cannot describe your message in ten or fewer words, then your message is not clear. A simple example of a catchphrase is “It’s never too late to make a difference.” Marco’s catchphrase could be something like, “There is no magic without willful suspension of disbelief.” In addition to being brief, a good catchphrase is also one that can easily be remembered. Rhyming and alliteration are very useful in catchphrases. Here is an example from Craig Valentine, the 1999 World Champion of Public Speaking for Toastmasters International. “What gets recorded gets rewarded.” Craig is encouraging his public speaking students to record their speeches in order to improve.
Tip #3: Have a call to action, even if you do not state it explicitly
The call to action refers to what you want your audience to do after your speech. You do not necessarily have to say, “When you leave here today…” However, it must be clear that you want your audience to do something. Marco wants us to believe in magic just like we do when we cheer for heroes at a football game or cry for friends we never had at the movie theater. Marco’s use of the screen is a perfect illustration of how magic works. If you were sitting in the audience and you found yourself watching Marco more than the screen, then you may need to work on your ability to see magic. However, if you watched the screen the entire time, you suspended your disbelief and enjoyed the entire experience.
Speech craft is similar to magic. When magicians perform, their spectators pay little attention the actual techniques being employed to create the illusions. In a speech, the audience may not have been aware that the speaker intentionally used certain tactics to provide a meaningful experience. However, they do know that they received an idea worth spreading.