If you decide to become a professional speaker or use speaking as an integral part of your marketing strategy, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various types of speeches you might be asked to give. In this series of posts, I’ll give you the basics on a variety of types of presentations you can prepare. At the end of this post, I’ve listed previous articles in this series.
What is a demonstration speech?
A demonstration speech is an educational or promotional presentation that explains a process, activity or product. It walks the audience through the keys points so that, after the presentation, they can repeat the process or activity or know how to use the product.
How do you demonstrate something?
Regardless of what your demonstrating, you need to break it down into easy to understand steps. A simple outline for a demonstration presentation might look like this:
- The demonstration is broken down into simple steps either chronologically or functionally.
To perform “snake arms” in a belly dance routine, first you need to bring your arms out straight from your sides. Now, leading with your elbows, raise one side up, while the other side goes down.
- Explain each step clearly, relating it to the sequence as a whole.
Leading from the elbow helps you create the illusion of a wave, while also giving you a focal point from which to control the movement.
- Reassemble the activity and show how it works as a whole.
This is how “snake arms” look when performed smoothly in sequence.
Things to keep in mind:
- Be as clear and specific as possible.
Remember, you are training your audience so that they can repeat what you are doing and perform the process, engage in the activity or use the product once you are done. Use strong visual words in addition to physically showing them what to do.
- Give them a reason to listen.
You want to motivate your audience to pay attention to your presentation. While entertainment can be motivating, you want to give them something more, as well. Why should they learn about the process, activity or product you are demonstrating. For example, have you ever seen those cooking product demonstrations at the fair? The demonstrators are usually pretty good at letting the audience know the benefit gained by owning the product being demonstrated!
- Plan, plan, plan.
Make sure you have all the tools you need and that you can smoothly move from one to the other. You don’t want to waste time with moving from one place to another or retrieving another object, when simple planning can put these in the right places for best effect.
Resources for developing your demonstration speech:
- eHow: How to Give a Demonstrative Presentation
- Best-Speech-Topics.com: Demonstration Speeches
- WikiHow: How to Write a Demonstrative Speech
- Ian’s Messy Desk: How to Give a Demonstration Speech Like a Food Network Star
- Mike Berry’s Website: Demonstration Speech
(NOTE: scroll to the bottom for tips; the top is primarily topic suggestions)
Did you miss these?
Here are the previous posts in this “Type of Speeches” series:
The next post in this series is The Information Dump.