Using Humor To Educate Your Audience

It can be possible to educate an audience even as you make them laugh
It can be possible to educate an audience even as you make them laugh Image Credit: RV1864

We all give speeches for different reasons. There will be times that we are called on to give a speech in which we will try to teach something new to our audience. These are not easy speeches for us to give. However, it turns out that if we really want to make an impact on our audience and we want them to remember what we tell them, then a great way to make this happen is to add some humor to our speech. This is not simple. We need to do it in the right way so that we are able to make what we are trying to teach them stick. The good news is that if done correctly, we can use humor to educate.

The Power Of Humor

Just think about the next speech that you will give. The big questions is will the audience enjoy it and benefit from it? As a speaker, you may have all the wisdom in the world to share with your audience, but if your presentation lacks pizzazz, you might as well be speaking to an audience of cats, because your wise words will go unheard. In fast-paced world in which we all live, bored TV watchers turn to channel surfing if a program doesn’t instantly grab their attention. Likewise, you can be assured that your live audience members will change channels mentally if they are not entertained by you. What this means for you is that you have to not be afraid to use a little humor in your next speech. This shows your audience that you respect their time.

In the world of speaking, there is saying that goes like this: “If you can make ’em laugh, you can make ’em buy.” Both humor and laughter are important ingredients in building a relationship with your audience. In a sense, you are selling both yourself and your concepts when you speak. To make your next presentation successful, you are going to want to keep your audience on their toes by incorporating some unexpected humorous phrases or funny props into your speech. Humor can inspire and motivate, can liberate learning and maximizes memory retention. It prepares an audience to receive information. We need to understand that there are very few subjects that are too serious for a little levity, and the more serious the content, the more important it is to for you to break the tension. Humor also equalizes, energizes and enhances creativity, which aids in problem-solving for your audience. Humor can break down barriers and puts an audience at ease, which makes for more productive learning sessions.

How To Incorporate Humor Into A Speech

If you want to add more humor to your next speech, you can start the process by starting to build a humor library. This will require you to become a student of observational humor and be on the lookout for something funny you might be able to use in your next speech. For examples, look at bumper stickers or walk through a novelty store where funny cards, T-shirts, magnets and other products are sold. When you do this, write down what makes you laugh. Use your imagination to build on humorous phrases. Think about how you can incorporate these phrases into your presentations in order to emphasize your teaching points. You’ll need to know your audience so that you can tailor your humor to them.

Remember that the best humor comes from real life. You should not tell jokes, because there is always a risk that the audience has heard them before or will find them offensive. Instead, use your life as the source of your humor. This guarantees that your presentation will be unique. Every speaker can recall an embarrassing situation that left them blushing at the time but now seems funny. These situations can be entertaining for your audience, so use them! When you are using them make sure you stay relevant to your topic.

When you are on stage, it doesn’t have to be just you. Props can serve many purposes, including adding new dimensions to your speech. Audiences remember what they see longer than they remember what they hear. As an example, if you are talking about conflict resolution, you could make your point by using two punching boxer puppets. Audience members are likely to think about those puppets the next time they are faced with a conflict. You need to be creative. You can drive home a point in a humorous way, and your audience will leave with the image of those props to remind them of your words. The next time you go out shopping, keep both your eyes and your mind open for something that is appropriate for your topic.

The humor that you include in your speech is important. However, how you go about delivering that humor matters also. The success of the humor in your speech will depend on your confidence level and the mood of the audience. If you have practiced your speech, are comfortable with your material and know your audience, then you’ll be able to sense if and when you should use humor. If your crowd doesn’t laugh, you need to keep calm, because it happens to even the most professional humorist. The trick here is to keep going. Audiences take their cue from the speaker, so if you are confident and poised, everything will be fine. It takes effort to create a speech and present a message. You want your audience to really experience your speech, and be excited by it. You want to make an impact in their lives! Take the time to be passionate about your topic and make it fun for those listening. Keep in mind that humor isn’t about being funny or telling jokes; instead it’s an attitude. It does takes courage to use humor and try innovative techniques, but these efforts are the ones that will set you apart from other speakers.

What All Of This Means For You

The ability to teach an audience something new that they may not already know is a special opportunity that is presented to speakers every once in a while. When we are handed an opportunity like this, we need to know how to make the most of it. It turns out that if we want to make our audience learn from our speech, what we need to do is to make them laugh. Working humor into a speech can be a difficult thing to do.

The power of humor comes from the fact that humor is what your audience will remember from your speech. Using humor in your speech allows you to build a relationship with your audience. In order to know what to add to your next speech, you need to take the time to build a humor library. Don’t tell jokes in your speech. Instead, draw on things that have happened to you in real life. If you want to make your audience laugh, you may want to consider using props. When you are giving your speech, you need to be confident. This will help your audience to bond with you and laugh when you do.

Humor is one of the most powerful tools that a speaker has. When you are asked to give a speech that will instruct your audience, you should consider including humor in it. This will allow you to connect with your audience. Understand that it is the humor in your speech that will allow you to communicate the messages that you want to teach your audience. In your next speech, use humor to get your message across.

– Dr. Jim Anderson Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Public Speaking Skills™

Question For You: How can you tell if you are teaching our audience what you want to teach them?

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Note: What we talked about are advanced speaking skills. If you are just starting out I highly recommend joining Toastmasters in order to get the benefits of public speaking. Look for a Toastmasters club to join in your home town by visiting the web site Toastmasters is dedicated to helping their members to understand the importance of public speaking by developing listening skills and getting presentation tips. Toastmasters is how I got started speaking and it can help you also!

What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

When we are giving a speech, because we understand the importance of public speaking we know that our body is giving a speech of its own. The communication that we have with our audience that does not come out of our mouth is called “nonverbal communication”. One of the biggest questions that every speaker deals with is just exactly how important is this nonverbal communication channel? Do we have to worry about it? Should we just focus on the words that we are saying? Or is our nonverbal communication with our audience an important part of our speech. Is this what we really should be spending our time working on?