A Template for Repeated Presentations

Painting pictures with words is an important part of a speaker’s repertoire. Here is a variation that is good for the speaker who gives the same presentation in different cities. In this case, the speaker’s job is easier and the audience feels connected as the speaker paints the same kind of picture but with different scenes.

For example, a recent client of mine gives basically the same presentation regularly to different audiences. In the Cincinnati area, she begins by having the audience visualize the packed Paul Brown Stadium as the Bengals play on a fall Sunday afternoon.

You are among a crowd of 65,000 people. Picture them in your mind, cheering the home team on to victory. Now picture that same number of people as homeless in our Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area. You see that is the number in our area who need our help.

She then goes on seek both volunteers and financial assistance from her audience members.

This same example could be given in most cities, substituting stadiums or other venues which seat a significant number of people in that locale. Do research to see what landmark buildings seat a number you can compare to the number of people who represent the need you want the audience to fill. You might be talking about the need for a new bridge that should be replaced before it is condemned by the state. You could mention a stadium or a combination of buildings nearby that seat the same number of people as cars that use the old bridge.

This technique gives you a unique beginning for the presentation that you deliver in different cities. It also gives you the opportunity of showing the audience that you have done your homework in relating to this audience and their city.

We usually think of a template in connection with PowerPoint, but this same pattern can be used in the actual content of your speech. It will make your preparation simpler and more directed to your audience.

Steve Boyd
Steve Boyd
Stephen D. Boyd, Ph.D., CSP, is Professor Emeritus of Speech Communication, College of Informatics, Northern Kentucky University, near Cincinnati. Steve won the Toastmasters International Speech Contest in 1970 and was chosen Outstanding Professor of the Year at NKU in 1984, among other awards and honors. Since retiring, he volunteers with nonprofits, spends time with family, travels, preaches occasionally, and enjoys reading and writing. Contact Steve at (859) 866-5693 or at steveboyd111@gmail.com.

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