There are a lot of tips online on how to become a good speaker. Very often, these tips will encourage you to be presentable, upbeat, they will advise you to always plan and practice your speech, modulate your voice well, you’ve heard the spiel.
I’ll set others aside for awhile and concentrate on the entertainment value of public speaking. After all, speakers are entertainers as well as motivators and informers but they can not achieve these goals if they fail to entertain the audience.
To entertain is to amuse, to catch interest, or to please. An entertained audience is more receptive to any stimulus. Their minds are open and the audience will take anything the speaker has in store for them. Therefore, entertainment is an essential element in speech delivery.
What does it take to entertain a crowd? Do you have to be funny? Do you have to be enthusiastic?
There is no definite manner on how to become entertaining. There can be a lot of ways but I’ll just give general pointers. These are not strict rules but rather universal guidelines that may give you a broader understanding about entertaining the audience in your speeches. Each speaker has his own style. Explore your own approach because ultimately, your personal methods are still the best.
Stories the ancient art of entertainment
Everybody loves stories. No matter what age, ethnicity, or gender people with the capacity to hear and understand are fond of listening to stories.
The audience wants to hear stories because they can relate and may find lessons from them. Stories, especially true ones, are greatly appreciated by the listeners. Humans are naturally gossip-hungry. We are instinctively wired to seek knowledge either from factual events or from products of fiction. This is why we love to watch news and movies on TV.
In public speaking, you should tell stories relevant to the theme. Your stories should be filled with lessons and should teach the audience something valuable. True stories are the best in this situation. If your stories are not appropriate, you can embellish a little bit. After all, the goal here is to prove your points through entertaining and engaging stories. No one has to know if it is true or not.
Laugh at yourself and the audience will laugh with you
Laughing at yourself sets a mood of acceptance of our weaknesses and inadequacies. It will also relieve the tension in the air and will give the audience the consent to be candid. If they realize that the speaker in front of them is just as human as they are, the audience tends to trust and listen more.
Have fun and be yourself
If you pressure yourself to become the most entertaining speaker the audience has ever come to witness, you will never become one. Even though the goal is to inform and entertain, never forget to relax and be yourself. Your self-imposed pressures may go against you. Just have fun with it and be natural.
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