Be Memorable (pt 2)

Ensnare Your Audience: There you are again—naked. You stand alone with only a microphone in front of you.  You start to talk, but your words stick on your swollen tongue.  The whispering of laughter rings out, getting louder and louder … 

While you may or may not be afraid of public speaking, I am always concerned that how I talk naturally may, in fact, prevent me from being a memorable speaker.  If you want your audience enthralled in your speech, then so should you.  To offer some helpful tips, part two of Be Memorable looks at, “How do you keep your audience glued, tuned-in and focused?

Two Words

Sensory Preference.  As you probably know, we all have a sensory preference or learning style—seeing it (visual), hearing it (auditory) or by doing it (kinesthetic).  Yes, we rely on all three senses, but most people depend on only one or two.  What you may not know is that everyone uses words that fit our preferred sensory preference. (I just showed my preferences – with the word “fit”—oh and did it again with the word “showed.”) We do this all the time—often without realizing it.

Think of your email sign-offs: “Looking forward to seeing you,”  “Sounds good,” or “Touch base soon.”  (If this is a business email, there should be no “touching of bases”, right?  If so, then your job is more exciting than mine.) This is just someone displaying their sensory preference. That’s all. But for you, it’s a gold mine to understanding how they think, how they make decisions (like to buy or not) and how they remember your speech. 


Okay, this makes sense, but does the order of the words matter? You bettcha!  Here’s the deal. Kinesthetic people feel their words, which takes more time to settle in.  People, who favor listening, prefer to hear the inflections and varied pace, while visual thinkers quickly paint pictures with their words.  So you want to start your speech slowly using kinesthetic words, then auditory, which clears the path for a quicker pace using visual words.

With this order, you have covered your entire audience and can take them on a sensory ride.

Final Thoughts

Dream about giving a memorable speech?  Arm yourself in words that will connect, resonate and illuminate your audience’s mind. Here’s how to get better:

  1. Be aware of your own preference. You need to know what you do naturally before you can know how to change it. 
  2. Practice using the other styles.  (This is not easy. Seriously, try telling a story using words outside your normal comfort zone.) 
  3. Feel, hear and see it in action by checking out these speeches: [LEARNING TIP: Listen to how, when and what type of words they use!  You may like the speakers or you may not—that's not the point!]  President  Clinton’s 2012 Democratic address, click here, or President Reagan farewell address, click here.

So shape-up, tune-up and clear up your sensory words, and you’ll be well on your way to be memorable. Now, what if you can tie your words to a genuine emotion that sticks with them when you walk away from the podium? That’s covered next.

As always, I wish you the best in making each day count!~ Tyke