The 3 core elements of a successful speech

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The 3 core elements of a successful speech

Have you been dreaming of being a famous speaker on stage and captivating people for a long time? Or do you primarily want to position yourself better in your current job and overcome your shyness? Whatever your motivation, to become a successful speaker, you need to be keynote speaker you should know the three core elements of a successful speech. These are:

  1. Positioning
  2. Keynote development
  3. Performance

Your path to becoming a keynote speaker: Positioning

First of all, it is important that you determine what you want to talk about in the first place. This may sound banal, but it is more complex than you think. Because you have to ask yourself many questions:

  • What kind of expertise do you have?
  • What target group are you addressing with this?
  • What are the needs of this target group?

But answering these questions alone is not enough to establish you as a keynote speaker. To get booked, you need a unique selling point. What can you offer your audience that other speakers can't? In what ways do you stand out? This is the most important aspect, but also the most difficult.

Your topic has probably already been addressed by numerous other speakers. It is therefore almost impossible to find a unique selling point in terms of content. The idea of turning to a niche topic for this reason may sound plausible at first. But what good does it do you to be an expert in a subject area for which there is no or only a small target group?

Instead of setting yourself apart from other speakers, you should convince them with your engaging personality. You may remember it from school: the same subject matter can be dry as dust for one teacher and incredibly fascinating for another. The same is true for speakers.

How do you convince with your personality?

To become a sought-after keynote speaker, you should question your own motivation: What is your big why? Why do you want to be on stage? Your motivation has a direct impact on your charisma! Your audience will immediately notice whether you are passionate about your topic or not.

Excitement before a stage appearance is completely normal. Even experienced keynote speakers are not spared from it. But don't worry: There are numerous ways to learn how to deal with stage fright. Even (formerly) shy people have had impressive speaking careers.

Another elementary building block is your self-confidence: Who are you really? What is the personality you bring to the stage? Be aware of your competencies: You are an expert in your field. This should be reflected in your external image.

Your path to becoming a keynote speaker: Keynote development

A successful keynote must have a clear structure. This is the only way to not only capture the attention of your audience with a gripping introduction, but also to keep it constantly. Keyword: storytelling and core messages. Let's take a closer look at these two aspects.

What are core messages?

Clearly state what you want to say. Don't beat around the bush. The listener must understand without a doubt what you are talking about. However, this is sometimes easier said than done. Beginners in particular sometimes don't know the core message of their own speech. Tip: Create the key messages in advance and try out different formulations. Then start writing your speech.

What is storytelling?

Storytelling means weaving in personal anecdotes from the speaker's everyday life. This loosens up the presentation and gives it an authentic touch. A touch of humor is also desirable.

Important: Every successful keynote ends with an appeal that motivates the listener to take action. After all, the goal of your speech is to effect positive change.

Keynote Speaker: Delivering added value to the audience

To actually motivate the audience to act, your speech must have a clear added value. Every single member of the audience must understand what the topic and the suggested changes mean concretely for them and their lives. There are very different types of speakers, and so keynotes are also very diverse. However, all (good) keynotes have one thing in common: they pick up the audience, take them with them and inspire them.

Skillfully choose the beginning and end

From a lecture usually the beginning and the end remain in the Memory of the listener. If the introduction is not captivating, no one will listen to the main part. A successful main part can in turn be destroyed by a meager or inappropriate conclusion. Therefore, the beginning and end of your keynote must be as perfect as possible.

For example, how about making your audience laugh at the beginning with a witty, clever line? Let your creativity run free and surprise your audience. That's how you'll be remembered.

Depending on the occasion and the topic, you are welcome to end your presentation with a provocative question, an appeal, or a joke. Please do not ruin your presentation with a dull summary or words of thanks to the technology or the host. Of course, you can do the latter later in private.

Your path to becoming a keynote speaker: Performance

Your speech may be well formulated and technically correct: If you bore your audience, all your efforts will be in vain. The message will not be received as desired. That's why we now want to take a closer look at the topic of stage performance.

Find an honest (!) test audience

To get feedback on your stage presence, the most obvious way is to rehearse your performance in front of friends and family. However, the people you choose should be the same as your target audience. It is of little use if no one knows what you are talking about. Make sure that your audience is at least roughly familiar with the topic of your presentation.

In addition, you should ask your private listeners to be absolutely honest. Unfortunately, this is not always the case among family and friends, as people do not want to hurt each other. Therefore, make your relatives and friends aware that you don't want to hear praise out of politeness, but rather on constructive criticism and honest praise.

To what extent the feedback from your test audience is useful for your keynote can only be judged by yourself. Regardless of the feedback, practicing in front of a test audience is definitely useful for reducing stage fright.

Pay attention to your authenticity

Surely you know it from various everyday situations from yourself: You only take advice seriously from people you consider to be (professionally) competent. The content of your presentation and your personal appearance must be congruent with each other. A speaker who talks about inner peace, but lets himself be completely thrown off track by a minor technical malfunction, comes across as absolutely inauthentic.


Attention to the three core elements forms the basis of your success as a keynote speaker. In addition to creating the perfect keynote, what matters most is your personality. You must know exactly who you are and what you are talking about. A perfectly prepared keynote is of little use if you are not able to convey the content authentically.

Becoming a keynote speaker is a constant learning process. Positioning, keynote development and performance go hand in hand. It's best to systematically work through all the aspects mentioned in the article and then bring them together. Get honest feedback to optimize your performance.

In our Training THEKEY we work with you on the three core elements.



Learn with professional speaker Frank Asmus captivate your audience from the very first second, cause goose bumps and earn thunderous applause!
Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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