As you've already learned, informative speeches show, clarify, and inform. To give the audience the information they've come for, you need to learn how to focus on a topic, decide on an effective method of organization, and include sufficient details, examples, and facts. Always start with the topic.

Sweet Themes Are Made of This

Said the after-dinner speaker: “I feel like Roseanne's fourth husband. I know what I'm supposed to do, but I'm at a loss how to make it different.” You won't feel like Roseanne's fourth husband if you start writing an informative speech by choosing a central theme, the main idea or thesis.

As you plan your informative speech, ask yourself, “What is the one idea that I want to convey to my listeners?” That's your theme. First of all, effective themes should appeal to you as well as your audience, because your speech will be more interesting if you're interested in the topic. It will also be easier to write. In addition, effective themes …

Word Watch

A speech's theme is its thesis, the main idea.
Have some genuine merit; they are worth the time to research, write, and deliver.
Meet the audience's expectations.
Hold the audience's attention.
Never cause anyone embarrassment.
Fit the time constraints.
Blend with the overall theme of a conference (if you're speaking with others).

Once you've settled on a theme, it's time to select a method of organization that fits with your audience, purpose, and topic.

Writer's Block

Never forget the implied contract between speaker and audience: They must sit still and listen politely. In exchange, you must have something of value to say.

Crystal Clear

Remember that an informational speech is designed to convey the speaker's ideas to the audience. The best-written speeches concentrate on helping listeners grasp and remember the essential ideas the speaker presents. To make sure your speech conveys its purpose, select a clear method of organization....

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