A persuasive speech should be based on facts. It should deliver arguments and counterarguments to show many sides of the issue you choose to discuss.
Now that you know what makes a speech topic persuasive, let’s go over a step-by-step formula that will help you choose the right topic for you.
Brainstorm where your convictions lie and what you are passionate about. You must reflect on what interests, hobbies, news, events, individuals, and activities of yours could be developed into a persuasive, strong narrative.
Narrow these down to 2 or 3 topics that are particularly important or riveting to you.
Now comes the practical side of the brainstorming process: take a moment to think whether preparing a comprehensive and compelling speech on this topic is feasible in the amount of time you have available. Consider the following questions:
If you have come up with a topic that results in a positive response to all the questions mentioned in step 3, you might have found the winner.
Start by developing a thesis, i.e., the main message of your speech. Without a thesis, you will not have a strong speech.
Develop arguments that endorse your thesis and support them with facts. Remember, a strong speech must be based on facts, rather than opinions and unsubstantiated statements.
Research counterarguments to your thesis. While you may not personally support these, you must present a well-rounded picture of the issue you are discussing.
You can finish off your speech by responding to the counterarguments in a way that reinforces your thesis. Don’t forget to re-emphasize your main message in the closing paragraphs of your speech.
To deliver a speech takes a lot of guts – not everybody is comfortable with public speaking. But to deliver a good speech takes conviction. Think of it like this: you must believe in the importance of your speech topic to discuss it. This must be something you care about and believe in; otherwise, your topic must be something that drives your curiosity, and you believe that it must be examined further.
Conviction stirs your desire to share this topic with others – you are convinced that other people will similarly find this topic fascinating! Whether it is the importance of recycling or bike lanes, the conviction is what will become the backbone of a successful and persuasive topic choice, as well as drive your desire to give a speech in the first place.
With conviction comes passion. These two elements of a successful speech are intimately intertwined. If you believe in the importance of something, you will be passionate about sharing it with the public.
If we look at some of the most famous speeches in human history, you will notice that conviction and passion are the driving force that makes these speeches legendary. Whether it’s Cicero’s defense of the Republic in the Roman Senate or Martin Luther King’s speech in the defense of civil rights almost two millennia later, both these speakers believed in the importance of their convictions and were passionate about sharing their beliefs. In these cases, even despite the threats of death.
Conviction and passion should also drive your need to know everything there is to know about your topic. To give a persuasive speech, you must not only show confidence and excitement but demonstrate that you are an expert in the topic of your choice. Granted, if you are a high school student or an undergraduate who’s been assigned to deliver a speech in less than 2 weeks, you are not going to become a world-renowned expert in your subject matter. However, as I pointed out, your speech topic should be something you are already passionate about, so you must have done some research and have some knowledge of your topic.
A persuasive speech should be based on facts. It should deliver arguments and counterarguments to show many sides of the issue you choose to discuss. For example, if you choose to discuss the importance of bike lanes, you can present several arguments in support of creating more bike lanes in your town or city, such as safety, decrease in traffic, environmental benefits, etc. However, make sure to include arguments that also show the other side of the issue, such as having to close down several major streets in your city to reconstruct the roads to fit in the new bike lanes and the side-effects of construction for businesses. Presenting both sides of the issue will show your comprehensive knowledge of the topic and demonstrate your professionalism.
Know your audience
It is always a good idea to know who your audience is. Whether you are giving a speech in your high school, or traveling to attend an undergraduate conference, reflect on who will be listening to your speech. Before you sit down to write it, consider whether you can give yourself the freedom to use technical language, jargon, or make inside jokes on the matter. In general, I would advise you to avoid overly technical or niche language. It is never a good tactic for making a persuasive speech – this might alienate a large part of your audience.
However, if you are delivering a speech to a like-minded audience, you may use “industry lingo”. For example, if you are delivering a speech at a video game convention, it is likely that many, if not most, attendees will be familiar with the terms and vocabulary you use. You will be able to strengthen your speech by using language that unites you with your audience. In this case, you are encouraged to engage the public by making inside jokes, using niche terminology, and creating a relatable experience with your speech.
Knowing your audience will allow you to develop a language for your speech. It will also allow you to gauge how deep you can delve into the topic of your choice. For example, if you are a young physics aficionado who is giving a lecture on black holes to your sophomore classmates, you might want to consider the fact that many of them have never studied physics in depth. This may help you shape your speech into something accessible and interesting for others.
If you are unsure about who your audience might be, try researching it. It is always good practice to know whom you will be addressing. Not only will it help you prepare the speech, but it will also ease your anxiety about the day of your speech delivery.
Thus, the above mentioned are but a few persuasive speech topics for 2021 that you may consider taking up. However, if you have to write a persuasive speech and are unable to nail it on the head, why not consider taking help from QuizBroz. With a network of subject matter experts, they deliver exemplary persuasive speeches.
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