How To Capture Your Audience’s Attention And Keep Your Speech Relevant

Audience’s Attention


Why You Need To Capture Your Audience’s Attention?

It is very hard to capture your audience’s attention when speaking and so easy to loose it. Every speech you make is competing for attention with every random thought your audience is having. Everybody in your audience is continually trying to juggle their busy lives and very few are giving you their undivided attention. This is especially true when the next distraction is only “one click away”


What You Say Can Matter

“Words are but the signs of ideas.”

Samuel Johnson


We typically give speeches because we have something we want to share. It could be an idea or insight, which we believe, will help our audience if we can get their attention. We do this by giving a carefully crafted speech we hope will inspire our audience to action. That is the theory but in practice we fail because we do not know how to capture our audience’s attention. There are a number of easy ways to capture your audience’s attention.


Start With A Bang

The opening of any speech is critical it is your best chance to get your audiences attention. Start by creating a sense of anticipation for your audience. Do and say something that will make them sit up and pay attention to you. Remember they are “one click” or thought away from a distraction at any given time. The start of your speech sets your audiences expectations for your speech.


Be Innovative When Capturing Your Audience’s Attention

The best way to get your audience’s attention is to give them something new. They might have prior knowledge of your topic and could even be experts on the matter. The way to get their attention is to find a novel approach to the topic or have an unique insight. Be creative and ask yourself what is it about your approach that makes it worth hearing? Every time you speak ask yourself that question and revisit your approach if necessary.


Share A Story

The best way to get peoples attention is to share a story. It gives the audience an insight into the real you and will build a personal relationship with your audience. The better the story the more memorable you will be and the more memorable your story will be.


Keep It Relevant

Know who your audience is and what they want. Tailor your content to their likes and dislikes. The more relevant you make your speech the more your audience will want to hear it. The best speeches make it easy for the audience to imagine themselves in the narrative.


Emotion Is King In Capturing Your Audience’s Attention

The best way to engage an audience is to relate to them on an emotional basis. Make them care about your narrative, let them “root” for the hero in your narrative. Show them why they should be emotionally invested in your message.


Adapt Your Content To Your Environment

There are no two venues the same, tailor your speech accordingly. When speaking to large numbers for example the grand dramatic gesture may go down well with your audience. In a small intimate gathering it may just seem” over the top”. Think carefully about your venue and how you will need to interact with your audience to keep their attention.


Challenge Your Audience

The best way to keep your audience’s attention is to challenge them. Deliver a speech that not only gets them thinking but also personally challenges them to think a different way or adopt a new behaviour. I personally have found speakers that challenged preconceptions I may have held; definitely get all my attention while they are speaking.


The Best Speeches Teach Us Something New

“Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upon it.”

Samuel Johnson

The best speeches teach us something new. They do this by capturing our attention from the start and delivering an innovative speech that not only appeals to our intellect but also touches our hearts. They share relevant stories that we remember long after the speaker has left the building and inspire us to be better people.