Caleb S.
Caleb S.

Learn How to Write a Perfect Persuasive Speech

13 min read

Published on: May 24, 2023

Last updated on: Jan 31, 2024

Persuasive Speech

Do you ever feel like you have a great idea or a strong opinion, but struggle to get others on board? That's where persuasive speech comes in. 

Persuasive speech is a powerful tool for influencing people's beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors. But how do you write a persuasive speech that is effective and impactful? 

In this blog post, we'll walk you through the key elements of writing a persuasive speech, from types to techniques. Whether you're a seasoned speaker or just getting started, these tips will help you craft a persuasive speech that achieves your desired outcome.

So, if you're ready to become a more persuasive speaker, read on and discover the power of persuasive speech.

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What is a Persuasive Speech?

A persuasive speech is aimed at convincing the audience to adopt or agree with the speaker's viewpoint or call to action. It involves presenting a well-reasoned argument with supporting evidence and appeals to emotions.

Importance: Persuasive speeches can influence people's beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors towards a goal or cause, making them important. They inspire action and bring change.

Check out this video for a powerful example of how persuasive speeches can be used to change behavior.

Types of Persuasive Speeches

There are several different types of persuasive speech you can choose from depending on your goals and audience. Let's take a closer look at some of the most common types.

Policy Persuasion

This type of persuasive speech aims to convince the audience to support a specific policy or action. It can be delivered by politicians, activists, or anyone who wants to change public policy. 
A policy persuasive speech often involves outlining the benefits of the proposed policy and addressing potential concerns or objections.

Example: Why we need to implement a carbon tax to combat climate change

Value Persuasion

Value persuasive speeches aim to persuade the audience to adopt a particular set of values or beliefs. This type of speech can be used to promote a certain worldview or to challenge an existing belief system. 

This type often uses emotional appeals to connect with the audience and encourage them to see things from a different perspective.

Example: Why volunteering is important for building a sense of community

Factual Persuasion

Factual persuasive speeches focus on presenting evidence and logical arguments to convince the audience of a particular point of view. 

This type of speech is often used in academic or professional settings. The goal is to persuade an audience based on facts and evidence.

Example: The benefits of a plant-based diet for human health and the environment

Motivational Persuasion

Motivational persuasive speeches aim to inspire the audience to take action or make a change. This type of speech is often used by coaches, motivational speakers, and leaders to encourage their audience to achieve their goals.

Example: How to overcome fear and achieve your dreams

Expert Tip

Need to deliver a motivational speech but stuck on what to talk about? Our blog offers an abundance of motivational speech topics to help you create a memorable speech.

Comparative Persuasion

Comparative persuasive speeches involve comparing two or more options to persuade the audience to choose one over the other. This type of speech can be used to compare products, services, or ideas. 

Comparative persuasion can be particularly effective when the audience is already familiar with both options being compared.

Example: Why our product is better than our competitors' products

Problem-Solution Persuasion

Problem-solution persuasive speeches aim to persuade the audience to take action to solve a particular problem. This type of speech often involves identifying a problem that the audience cares about and presenting a viable solution. 

This type can be particularly effective when the audience is already aware of the problem and is looking for a solution.

Example: How we can reduce plastic waste and preserve the environment by adopting a circular economy model

Expert Tip

Want to become a well-rounded speaker? Our blog can help you understand the various types of speeches and how to deliver them effectively.

Elements of a Persuasive Speech

Here's a detailed table outlining the key elements of a persuasive speech with examples:

Attention-getterThe opening lines that grab the audience's attention"Did you know that every day, over 8 million tons of plastic waste ends up in the ocean?"
Thesis statementThe central argument of the speech"We must take immediate action to reduce our plastic consumption and protect our oceans." 
Credibility statementEstablishes the speaker's authority and expertise"As a marine biologist with 20 years of experience, I have seen firsthand the devastating effects of plastic pollution on marine life."
EvidenceSupports the thesis statement and makes the argument more persuasive"According to a recent study, over 700 species of marine animals are threatened by plastic pollution."
CounterargumentsAddresses potential objections to the thesis statement"Some may argue that recycling is enough, but the truth is that only 9% of all plastic ever produced has been recycled."
Call-to-actionEncourages the audience to take action based on the argument"Join me in pledging to reduce your plastic consumption by using reusable bags, bottles, and containers."

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How to Write a Persuasive Speech?

To write a persuasive speech, follow these essential steps:

Step#1: Choose A Compelling Topic 

Select a subject that is relevant, interesting, and aligns with your audience's interests and values.

Step#2: Understand Your Audience 

Research and analyze your target audience's demographics, beliefs, and concerns. This knowledge will help you tailor your speech to resonate with them effectively.

Step#3: Define Your Goal

Determine the specific outcome you want to achieve with your speech. Is it to persuade, inspire, or motivate your audience? Clarify your objective early on.

Step#4: Develop A Strong Thesis Statement

Craft a clear and concise thesis statement that presents your main argument or position. This statement will serve as the foundation for your persuasive speech.

Step#5: Gather Supporting Evidence

Conduct thorough research to find credible and compelling evidence, examples, statistics, and expert opinions that support your thesis. This evidence will strengthen your arguments and make them more persuasive.

Step#6: Structure Your Speech

Organize your speech into an introduction, body, and conclusion. 

The introduction should grab your audience's attention, introduce the topic, and present your thesis statement. 
The body should present your main points and supporting evidence. 
The conclusion should summarize your key arguments and end with a strong call to action.

Step#7: Use Persuasive Language And Rhetorical Devices

Employ rhetorical devices such as anecdotes, metaphors, analogies, and emotional appeals to engage your audience and make your arguments more persuasive. Use strong and convincing language throughout your speech.

Step#8: Anticipate And Address Counterarguments

Acknowledge opposing viewpoints and counterarguments. Present them respectfully and then refute them with logical reasoning and evidence. This demonstrates your credibility and strengthens your persuasive case.

Step#9: Practice And Refine Your Delivery

Rehearse your speech multiple times to improve your delivery and timing. Pay attention to your body language, voice modulation, and overall confidence. Practice in front of a mirror or seek feedback from a trusted friend or colleague.

Step#10: Engage Your Audience

During your actual speech, connect with your audience by maintaining eye contact, using gestures, and speaking with passion and conviction. Encourage audience participation through questions, stories, or interactive elements.

Techniques for Persuasive Speaking

To deliver a persuasive speech that truly resonates with your audience, it's important to use a variety of techniques. 

Here are five techniques you can use to make your speech more persuasive and effective:

1- Emotional Appeal

One of the most powerful techniques for persuasive speaking is emotional appeal. This involves using language and stories that evoke strong emotions in your audience, such as fear, anger, or compassion. 

By connecting with your audience on an emotional level, you can make your message more memorable and impactful.

2- Logical Appeal

Another effective technique is logical appeal, which involves using reasoning and evidence to support your argument. This can include statistics, facts, and expert opinions. It helps to bolster your case and convince your audience that your position is the right one.

3- Ethical Appeal

The ethical appeal involves appealing to your audience's sense of morality and values. This can include using examples of right and wrong behavior.  By framing your argument in ethical terms, you can make it more persuasive and compelling.

4- Repetition

Repetition involves repeating key ideas throughout your speech to emphasize their importance and make them more memorable. This can be especially effective for driving home your main points and making a lasting impression on your audience.

5- Rhetorical Questions

Rhetorical questions can be an effective way to engage your audience and encourage them to think deeply about your message. By asking questions that lead your audience to draw their own conclusions, you can make your speech more interactive.

Delivering a Persuasive Speech

Delivering a persuasive speech requires more than just having a well-written script. Here are some tips to help you deliver your speech effectively:

  • Using body language effectively: Your body language can convey confidence, enthusiasm, and sincerity. Use gestures, facial expressions, and posture to emphasize key points and connect with your audience.
  • Maintaining eye contact: Eye contact is essential to establishing trust and credibility with your audience. Make eye contact with different members of your audience to engage them and maintain their attention.
  • Speaking confidently and clearly: Your voice should be clear, strong, and articulate. Use pauses and inflection to emphasize key points and vary your tone and pace to keep your audience engaged.
  • Handling audience questions and objections: Be prepared to answer questions and address objections from your audience. Listen carefully, acknowledge their concerns, and provide thoughtful responses that reinforce your key points.

Expert Tip

Read our blog on speech writing for practical strategies to make your speechwriting process smoother! 

How to Choose a Topic For Persuasive Speech?

To effectively brainstorm persuasive speech ideas, it is vital to consider the "who, what, when, where, and why" approach. 

  • Who: Who is my intended audience for this speech? What are their interests and beliefs? How can I connect with them on a personal level?
  • What: What topics am I knowledgeable about and passionate about? What topics are relevant and timely to my audience? What topics can I research and present with credibility?
  • When: How much time do I have to present? Should I choose a broad topic or a niche topic based on the time frame? Is my topic appropriate for the time of day or the event schedule?
  • Where: Where will I be delivering this speech? What is the setting and environment? What tools and resources will be available to me?
  • Why: What is the purpose of my speech? Do I want to inform, persuade, or motivate my audience? Why is my topic important and why should my audience care about it? How can I make my audience feel connected to my topic and invested in my message?

By using this approach, you can pick a topic that you are interested in and effectively capture the attention of your audience.

Persuasive Speech Topics

Here are some persuasive speech topics that may inspire you to create a successful persuasive speech:

  • Should the Supreme Court have term limits?
  • What makes a good persuasive speech topic and how to pick one?
  • Should schools be required to teach financial literacy as a mandatory subject?
  • Should mental health treatment be covered by health insurance?
  • The key elements of a successful persuasive speech and how to deliver it.
  • Should art and music therapy be considered a legitimate form of treatment?
  • At what age should children be allowed to use social media and why?
  • How high school students can prepare and deliver persuasive speeches that flow logically.
  • Should the minimum wage be increased to a living wage?
  • Do video games contribute to increased aggression and should they be regulated accordingly?

Expert Tip

Check out our blog on interesting persuasive speech topics to get plenty of ideas and get inspired!

Examples of Persuasive Speeches

Here are some examples of powerful and influential persuasive speeches from both historical and contemporary figures:

Historical Examples:

Contemporary Examples:

Tips for Delivering an Effective Persuasive Speech

Here are some tips for delivering a successful persuasive speech:

  • Practice, practice, practice: Rehearse your speech to improve your delivery and confidence.
  • Be passionate about your topic: Emphasize your enthusiasm to engage and persuade your audience.
  • Connect with your audience: Build a rapport with your audience by showing empathy and relating to their experiences.
  • Use visuals if appropriate: Use visual aids, such as images or charts, to reinforce your message and improve comprehension.

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Common Mistakes to Avoid When Giving a Persuasive Speech

You should avoid these mistakes when giving a persuasive speech:

  • Not knowing the audience
  • Lack of preparation
  • Failing to establish credibility
  • Overwhelming the audience with information
  • Ignoring counterarguments
  • Using weak or irrelevant evidence
  • Lack of enthusiasm or passion
  • Reading directly from notes or slides
  • Going off-topic or rambling
  • Ignoring time constraints.

The Bottom Line!

We have covered everything you need to know about writing a persuasive speech. We have discussed the different types, essential elements, and techniques for writing a compelling persuasive speech. 

Additionally, we have provided some persuasive speech topics and tips that you can use to make your speech more engaging. We hope this guide has been helpful to you in crafting a persuasive speech that will impress your audience.

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Caleb S.


Caleb S. (Education, Marketing)

Caleb S. has extensive experience in writing and holds a Masters from Oxford University. He takes great satisfaction in helping students exceed their academic goals. Caleb always puts the needs of his clients first and is dedicated to providing quality service.

Caleb S. has extensive experience in writing and holds a Masters from Oxford University. He takes great satisfaction in helping students exceed their academic goals. Caleb always puts the needs of his clients first and is dedicated to providing quality service.

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