Posted by: George E Burney | April 2, 2012

Public Speaking – How To Select Main Points For A Persuasive Presentation

To properly select main points for a persuasive presentation, start with your theme. The theme is the central idea of your presentation, the one idea you want your audience to remember and act on, even if they remember nothing else.

Of course, you want them to remember your main points as well. As important as main points are, even they are secondary to, and are themselves determined by the theme. What are they?

Main points are those critical ideas used to support and explain the theme, to convince or persuade your audience to accept your basic premise, your theme. They serve to bridge the gap between what the audience already knows and accepts, and what you want them to know and accept when your presentation is finished.

Therefore, ask yourself what you audience likely thinks and knows about your theme before hearing you speak. This is important because the opening thoughts presented to an audience should be within the range of their present knowledge and experience. One of your objectives is to use main points to build upon what is already accepted by your audience.

But how do you select main points? By thinking logically to determine which points or ideas are absolutely essential to help the audience see matters as you do. Those ideas will serve as your main points.

Suppose you are selling a product as a replacement for conventional lawn fertilizer, and you have the opportunity to speak to an assembled group of homeowners. Let’s say that you want to convince them to try your product. What might your main points regarding your product be? They might include these:

1. Beneficial effects on lawn, both short-term and long-term

2. Economical cost, when compared to the existing alternatives

3. Safety for the homeowner who uses it, and in its effect on the environment

4. Ease of application

By providing convincing evidence relative to those main points, you are likely to address the questions your audience will have. Failing to address those issues will leave them with lingering doubts, which confirms that they are main points.

By carefully and thoughtfully selecting your main points, you will present a logical, persuasive presentation.

Copyright © 2012 by George Burney and betterpublicspeaking


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