What is the Persuasive Speech? What Makes It Persuasive?

Any speaker who has ever tried to deliver his ideas to the public is undoubtedly aware of what is the persuasive speech.

Being an appeal to the audience, persuasive speech is aimed at providing listeners with ideas that make speaker’s position clearer to them. Neither a presentation of poetry nor the President elections are successful without proper persuasion. Ability to convince is a necessity in a modern fast-developing world. Persuasive skills would be of a great value in various everyday situations starting from teenagers’ requests to go to a party and ending with law practices in the court. That is the reason why the knowledge of what is the persuasive speech as well as of different persuasive methods is a determinative factor for every successful individual.

Defining a Persuasive Speech

Persuasive speech is a kind of speech which is given to a certain audience and is aimed at influencing the listeners’ points of view. It is intended not to change the worldview of others, but rather makes them accept and agree with the speaker’s idea or viewpoint. Persuasive speech always pursues specific goals that have to reach listeners’ subconscious and induce them to act.

Methods of Persuasion

Among the main tools that assist speaker in communicating his or her goals to the audience are the methods of persuasion. According to Aristotle, it is important to distinguish between three forms of rhetoric influence: ethos, pathos, and logos.

  • Ethos – a method of persuasion that appeals to the credibility of the speaker. It represents the speaker’s knowledge of the particular topic and defines whether he or she is sufficiently competent and whether the speech is worth listening.
  • Pathos – a method of persuasion that appeals to the emotions of listeners. It is the key element of the persuasive speech as the vast majority of people make a decision based on their feelings and emotions.
  • Logos – a method of persuasion that presumes a logical appeal to the audience. Logos makes use of facts and figures that support the main topic. It is aimed at providing clear evidence that would finally convince the public in the speaker’s correctness.

Types of Persuasive Speeches

It is equally important to distinguish between different types of persuasive speech that depend on the content and the subject of the speech as well:

  1. Factual persuasive speech – a type of persuasive speech that is based on the genuineness of the particular topic, backing by facts and evidence. This is a type of persuasive speech which the main goal is to convince the audience about the existence or non-existence of something.
  2. Value persuasive speech – a type of persuasive speech that is grounded on the rightness or fallibility of a certain fact. It takes into consideration the moral aspect of the topic and speaker’s position regarding it.
  3. Policy persuasive speech – a type of persuasive speech that is given to support or deny a certain political regime, rule, or candidate. Policy persuasive speech is mostly used before and during the Presidential or parliamentary elections.

Taking into account the variety of persuasive methods and types of persuasive speech it is important to emphasize that they should be appropriately utilized depending on the case. The correct approach to the preparation of persuasive speech would help to make any speech successful, audience convinced, and speaker satisfied.