The four basic types of speeches are: to inform, to instruct, to entertain, and to persuade. These are not mutually exclusive of one another. You may have several purposes in mind when giving your presentation. For example, you may try to inform in an entertaining style. Another speaker might inform the audience and try to persuade them to act on the information.
However, the principle purpose of a speech will generally fall into one of four basic types:
1. Informative – This speech serves to provide interesting and useful information to your audience. Some examples of informative speeches:
o A teacher telling students about earthquakes
o A student talking about her research
o A travelogue about the Tower of London
o A computer programmer speaking about new software
An informative speech is very similar to a demonstrative speech, but it doesn’t include a demonstration. When you make an informative speech, you explain something to your audience and help them understand the concept. Your main goal is to teach people something that they don’t already know. Some examples include:
• A computer programmer telling people about a new app
• A tour guide telling people about the city they are visiting
• AA teacher speaking about historical events
2. Demonstrative Speeches – This has many similarities with an informative speech. A demonstrative speech also teaches you something. The main difference lies in including a demonstration of how to do the thing you’re teaching. Some examples of demonstrative speeches:
o How to start your own blog
o How to bake a cake
o How to write a speech
o How to… just about anything
A demonstrative speech should educate the audience. It usually includes a demonstration of how to do the things you are teaching. For example, you can show people how to start a blog, make money online, prepare a cake, or write a cover letter. The best way to prepare this type of speech is to ask yourself how and why questions. Visual aids are essential for your presentation.
3. Persuasive – A persuasive speech works to convince people to change in some way: they think, the way they do something, or to start doing something that they are not currently doing. Some examples of persuasive speeches:
o Become an organ donor
o Improve your health through better eating
o Television violence is negatively influencing our children
o Become a volunteer and change the world
In a persuasive speech, you provide information and share your opinion on that topic. This type of speech aims to persuade the audience that your opinion is correct. The message should be adjusted to people’s interest, values, knowledge, and beliefs. Public speakers should guard themselves from the use of deception or manipulation. Persuasive speeches are usually given by people who support specific causes.
4. Entertaining — The after-dinner speech is a typical example of an entertaining speech. The speaker provides pleasure and enjoyment that make the audiences laugh or identify with anecdotal information. Some examples of entertaining speeches:
o Excuses for any occasion
o Explaining cricket to an American
o How to buy a condom discreetly
o Things you wouldn’t know without the movies
Effective preparation requires identifying the purpose of your speech. Once you’ve identified your purpose, you can move on to the objective of your speech (coming next week).
Wedding speeches, after-dinner speeches, and comic monologues are good examples of entertaining speeches. This type of speech aims to amuse people through humor, stories, or illustrations. It’s usually short and uses an informal tone. The speaker provides pleasure and enjoyment.
Afroza Akhter Tina
Department of English, DIU