I love Toastmasters, and I love everyone who is a part of that fantastic club. …okay, not everyone. But I at least respect everyone. It takes a hell of a lot of courage to get up in front of complete strangers and speak. So, to everyone who joins and participates in TM, you rock!
Every now and then, however, there are people who really struggle with their speeches. They struggle to understand how to make their speeches entertaining. It took me a long time to learn how to put together a speech, and I’m certainly no where near where I want to be. I believe, though, that I know a little bit.
Because of that brazen assumption, I’d like to tell you today how to prepare a mini-speech—sometimes called a Review—that is designed to introduce something to the audience that you, as a speaker, find interesting. That thing can be a movie, a philosophy, a book, a restaurant, a park, or just about anything you feel excited enough to talk about.
Of course, as a speaker who’s excited about your subject, you want to inspire and excite your audience enough to experience the thing you’re discussing. If they go, then you two will have something in common that the both of you can discuss later on.
Knowing this, it’s important that when preparing your review, you consider these 3 points:
First, always always always chose one, and I mean ONLY ONE, unique selling point. Remember that a Review in Toastmasters is only to be two minutes in length. One unique selling point is all you have time to talk about.
What is it that you like about the thing you are sharing with us? What are you certain to be the big benefit that the audience is likely to get from the thing you are sharing. For example, you might be sharing with us a book that you enjoyed. What about the book do you think the audience will appreciate? Think hard. Then, after you’ve given it a good think, decide what the one unique selling point is, and move on to point number 2…
Second, state that unique selling point as a short, concise question that you’ll spend the next two minutes answering. For example, you might ask the audience: “Tired of reading boring books about stupid dumb people?” So what is the USP of this question? The selling point is that the book you are reviewing will probably be a book that is not a boring book about stupid dumb people. Instead, it will probably be about something else. That something else is the thing I’ll describe in point 3…
Finally, answer the question by explaining the unique selling point. The question that you posed in the introduction is actually a problem that needs to be solved in your brief review. This should be easy to do in a simple way within the two minute time frame.
The best way for me to explain this is to write a mock version of a review:
“Fellow Toastmasters and Welcome guests…Tired of reading boring books about stupid dumb people? Well have I got a solution for you! This book is anything but boring. It’s packed with awesome characters who talk funny and creative, who are smart, and are positively cool. It’s the story of Bob who is a really silly man who just so happens to love a unique lady named Veronica. Unfortunately, the woman is in love with only her dog, so she find’s Bob quite ugly.
The ending is unlike anything you could ever possibly expect. It’s exciting and bizarre, and I really recommend it. If you’d like to know more, please ask me during 2nd Round. (If you are unfamiliar with 2nd Round, that’s where all the Toastmasters people go out after a meeting and socialize).
Briefly, you should know that you can buy this book at any bookstore. It costs about 9000 Korean won.
So, do yourselves a favour….if you’re tired of reading dull books about dumb people, try this book. It’ll excite you and entertain you. Mr. Toastmaster…”
So there you have it. Follow my tips, and you’ll be able to create a moderately super fantastic Review.
If you have any additional advice, do yourself a favour and make your own damned blog!
Just kidding! Feel free to leave a comment or eight. Much appreciated.
For more information on how to write good speeches, go here: SPEECH TIPS.