Facts tell… emotions sell

So what’s the story – happy or sad?

Take a look at the photo, what do you see?

A letter, a lady and a light, but I bet you’re not satisfied with just the facts. You want to know the story behind those facts….. Who’s the lady? What’s in the letter? Is it a love letter? And most importantly is the ending to this story happy or sad?

Don’t know what you decided but for me that flickering candle can only mean one thing… sad, sad, sad.

We’re all the same, you, me, Mr Spock, we see the world through a mist of facts but we make sense of it with our emotions.

Writers and Playwrights use emotions…

"If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?"
Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare

Songwriters use emotions…

"And when no hope was left in sight. On that starry, starry night. You took your life, as lovers often do. But I could have told you, Vincent. This world was never meant for one as beautiful as you."
Vincent by Don McLean

Film makers use emotions…

"I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time… like tears in rain… Time to die"
The replicant Batty from the film Blade Runner

And as a Public Speaker… you should definitely use emotions.

Why use emotions in your Speeches and Presentations?

image indicating the emotion of sadness

It can be scary to stand in front of an audience and show your emotions, you’re letting them see the real you. Much easier to deliver your speech from behind a protective cloak of formality and facts. Here are a few reasons you should throw that cloak away, take a few risks and lift your Public Speaking to the next level.

  1. Emotions let the audience know that you are human – the audience don’t want to listen to a fact spitting machine, they want to connect with a living breathing human being. Make that connection by showing your emotions and letting them know you are just like them. You get angry, you get sad, you know how to have fun and you know when to show compassion.
  2. Emotions help us to remember – we remember things that have emotional connections, for instance… what scene do you remember most from Walt Disney’s Bambi? I bet it’s the scene where Bambi’s mum senses the hunters and shouts "Run Bambi Run". We see Bambi running and then we hear a shot…..
    Why do most of us remember that scene? Because that scene smashes into our hearts like an emotional juggernaut and we bear the scars forever. If you want the audience to remember your speech, your main points, your call to action, give them a few emotional hooks to remember.
  3. Emotions make us take actionPhan Thị Kim Phúc is the child in the Pulitzer Prize winning photograph taken during the Vietnam War. The iconic photo shows her at about age nine running naked on a road after being burned on her back by a napalm attack. Once the public had seen that photograph the politics were swept aside by emotion… the war had to end.

    "Change happens in the boiler room of our emotions – so find out how to light their fires."
    Jeff Dewar

No need to become Mr Angry overnight, build up your emotional arsenal piece by piece.
Start by injecting a little enthusiasm and passion into your speeches and presentations. Then add a sprinkling of fun, enjoyment and happiness. And when you have the right subject and feel comfortable… bring in the emotions that have the biggest impact but most of us are reluctant to use, anger and sadness.

"A speech is not about facts and numbers; it’s about story, meaning. A memorable speech rests on the quality of the connection between the speaker and the audience."
Tony Carlson from his book The How of Wow

How to show emotions

image of two girls showing various emotions

As a Public Speaker you have a great advantage when it comes to using emotion. You can use emotive words but more importantly, you can use your voice and your body.

"Learning takes place when you kick them into a higher attention level. Touch their hearts, their minds will follow."
Lilly Walters

So lets say that you want to show the audience how enthusiastic you are about something… what do you do? Just think what you do normally when you’re enthusiastic. I speak louder, speak quicker, become animated, my face lights up and I smile. You may do that or you may do something different.

Once you know what you do normally, do the same in front of the audience, but exaggerate everything. How much you exaggerate depends on the size of the audience. If you’re talking to three people, there’s no need to exaggerate at all. If you’re talking to thirty people, you exaggerate slightly. If you’re talking to three hundred people… you can really let it go. And if you’re talking to three thousand people… could you please send me the name of your agent.

Here is a check list to run through when you’re trying to convey a particular emotion.

  1. Use the right words – no need to use big words, but at moments of high emotion you can use a little rhetoric to add impact. In the opening line of his eulogy to his sister Diane Princess of Wales, Lord Spencer uses a list of three to emphasise his simple words.

    “I stand before you today the representative of a family in grief, in a country in mourning before a world in shock.”
    Lord Spencer at the funeral of his sister Diana Princess of Wales

  2. Use the right voice – your voice is the most important element in conveying emotion. You can change volume, pace, pitch, intonation and you can….. pause, to convey emotion.
  3. Body gestures – make sure your body is in sync with your voice. If you are talking quickly to show enthusiasm, make sure you are animated. If you pause to show sadness, make sure you stand still.
  4. Facial gestures – take a look at the two girls in the photo at the start of this section. Great facial gesture done without thinking. What facial gestures can you use to convey your emotion? Even if the audience can’t see your face, making the gesture will have an effect on your voice, which the audience will hear.

Best way to use emotions

photo of girl crying - indicating the emotion of despair

Here are a few tips on how to get the most out of using emotions.

  1. Use emotions in short bursts – if you use an emotion for too long, it loses its impact. The solution is to use emotions in short bursts with normal bits in between. Light and shade, ebb and flow.
  2. Go easy on the negative emotions – emotions such as anger and sadness can have the greatest effect on an audience but too much can make them feel uneasy. Use the negative emotions sparingly.
  3. Mix up those emotions – to get the maximum impact from an emotion, contrast it against an opposing emotion. For example, if you have a sad section in your speech make the preceding section light hearted and humourous. Then slowly lead the audience into the sad section. Make em laugh, make em cry.

    "Humour is only a fragrance, a decoration… everything human is pathetic. The secret source of humour itself is not joy but sorrow."
    Mark Twain

  4. Finish on a positive – don’t forget… if you’ve taken the audience to a dark place, don’t leave them there. Bring them back by offering them a solution, giving them hope, showing them that they can change things for the better. Make sure they leave feeling better than when they arrived.

    "Audiences want speakers to end speeches on a high note – to give them a fleeting look at the land of promise. Who wants to listen to the preachers of doom and gloom?"
    Thomas Montalbo from his book The Power of Eloquence

  5. Don’t try and fake it – only use emotions that you genuinely feel. Exaggerate those emotions but don’t try and fake it. You’re a Public Speaker not a con man.

How do you use Emotions?

If you’re a Public Speaker, someone who gives Presentations, a writer or a blogger, how do you use emotions? Do you concentrate on happiness, do you concentrate on sadness, do you use a mixture? Are there emotions you avoid. Let me have your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.

My thanks and gratitude to:

Simon Howden for Victorian Love Letter photo on free digital photos
John Steven Fernandez for The Eye photo on flickr
Ali Brohi for Two Girls photo on flickr
Elena Lagaria for Girl with Tear photo on flickr

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  1. Really, really good advice for public speakers. I love how you broke it down for us and sprinkled a lot of great quotes throughout your post!

    As far as “how to show emotions,” or how to integrate them more into your speech – what about the use of pictures or video clips? Especially if you are doing a Powerpoint presentation these can be incredibly useful – and they can also help you “get into character” when you are trying to cultivate a certain feel to your presentation.
    Steven H´s last great post ..PsychNews- Sep 26 – Oct 2My Profile

    • Hi Steven
      Welcome and thanks for a great comment.

      Using pictures and video clips sounds like a super idea and as you say… especially as part of a Powerpoint Presentation.

      Hope you’ll be a regular visitor.

  2. I do an exercise with club members which necessitates them delivering a quite mundane speech with totally exaggerated emotion.
    Many of them have told me that that one exercise has made all the difference to their confidence – particularly in the work place.
    They find that when they speak with feeling and emotion, everyone sits up and listens.
    Glad to see this being put into your blog in such a well researched way.
    Well done again Keith.

    • Hi Gwyneth
      That sounds like a great idea must try it at Sans Souci.

      I remember taking part in a similar exercise where you had to read from a seed catalogue!
      But you had to read in a suggestive way.
      One of my lines was…

      “Performs well against a wall.”

      Nuff said.

  3. Hi Keith,

    Great article!

    Advertising is another avenue where emotions are used. Just turn on your TV and watch some commercials and you can clearly see this. People buy on emotion … when they’re sad, happy, lonely, exited, ect.

    Ilka Flood´s last great post ..How to Take Immediate Action With the Tools You Already HaveMy Profile

  4. Hi Keith,
    This was a wonderful article. Really comprehensive in-depth look and the benefits and ways to include emotions in your writing. Thank you for such a well crafted post!
    Angela Artemis´s last great post ..Are YOU a BrandMy Profile

  5. Hi Keith
    Good to see another post. Excellent articleand you seem to have covered it all really well 🙂
    Excellent example with Don McLean and Vincent. Ah, I remember that like it was yesterday. One of my all time favourite songs about one of my favourite artists. Takes me back. See evoking not only emotions but memories too.
    I will be starting to do some presentation with my products in a few weeks so this post is very timely and thanks.
    Patricia Perth Australia
    Patricia´s last great post ..Lavender Products- Why Choose Organic LavenderMy Profile

    • Good to see you back Patricia

      Music can have real emotional significance especially if it evokes memories.

      Hope the “Don McLean and Vincent” example brought back happy memories for you.

      Thanks for your comment.

  6. I lead into the world with my emotions, so for me I have to pull back and be disciplined when I am making a presentation. I have trouble selling products because I go too far, and if I like something I really like it and when I don’t I really do not….it is hard to control in those moments…

    I am reminded though of a recent politician in the Midwest of the USA who ended up on You Tube because the emotions he was over sharing had nothing to do with what he was expressing…and the incongruity of the speech was almost overwhelming to watch…one needed to laugh to get relief from his posturing and yelling….

    Important lesson in story telling with emotion Thank you
    Patricia´s last great post ..Cherry On Top AwardMy Profile

    • Hi Patricia
      Thanks for a great comment.

      I’ve not seen the politician you mention but they played some of the speech on the radio in the UK.
      What can you say…. what can you say.

      Sounds as though you have no problem with using emotions and if you want to remind yourself of exercising a bit of control… just think of that politician. LOL

  7. Hi Keith,
    Makes perfect sense to me..emotions are heart based..and we connect from our hearts..
    If I want you to ‘see’ my point..I have to engage your senses so that you may experience my words..use of emotion allows me to engage your senses..
    And *grin* I happen to think the candle represents Light and happiness..perhaps love and fond memories…

    • Good to hear from you Joy
      Emotions from the heart… love that.

      Flickering candles for sadness or flickering candles for happiness?

      Looks as though I’m a half empty person and you’re a half full person.

      Thanks for a lovely comment.

  8. hey Keith:)

    The part where you connected the photo from the Vietnam war and the end of the conflict is a masterpiece. I have just understood something significant! muchas grazias.
    yes, the emotions are . we love to talk to those who have something to say, something unique, and they usually do because the topic is fascinating somehow. at least to them. emotional and perhaps…creative, innovative, different.
    Have you watched “what the bleep do we know”? at one point the scientist talks about the triggers of all the change that humans experienced throughout the history. not the facts…but ideas, dreams and emotions!

    thank you for the article, and the photos@
    Martyna (the Queen of course :P)

    just something came to my mind- once there was a psychologist who talked about the power of the tyrants like Hitler and Stalin. And what he said was that those chaps ruled and got attention because of their emotional significance. It didn’t matter what they had to say, if it was right or wrong- but what mattered was the emotional power and the strength of their conviction that persuaded other people.
    Martyna´s last great post ..Take Warren Buffett and Jay-Z- put them in the same room What happens nextMy Profile

    • Martyna you made it – welcome.

      I used the picture of the girl in Vietnam in a speech about the power of images… speech was called “Unforgettable simply unforgettable.”

      I asked the audience to think of just one image that they associated with the Vietnam war… then I produced a large image of the photo and asked… “Is this the image?”

      Guess from the gasps that most people were thinking of that image.

      I think that all great speakers know how to play with our emotions.
      The use of emotions can turn a good speaker into a great speaker.

      Hope that you have recovered from your day out and many thanks for your comment.

  9. Keith,

    Your post made me feel emotional! Really, it is a really great piece of writing and you do that very well.

    You are so right about facts tell and emotion sells. I remember the picture of that Vietnamese girl running and you can feel the pain and horror of going through something like that.

    I am emotional person but I am afraid sometimes I do not always show my emotions in positive, constraint manner, I burst out crying, laughing or sometimes I am confused by some events. We humans can be complicated sometimes.

    Zengirl @ Heart and Mind´s last great post ..Why learning from history is cool- fun Part IIIMy Profile

    • Preeti
      Can’t believe the quality of the comments for this post – fantastic.

      That photo is awesome – when most people see it they just stop speaking and stare.
      I understand that the girl in the photo is still alive. Google her name if you are interested – her name is in the post.

      We are indeed complicated… don’t ever stop laughing.

  10. Hi Keith,

    I can always feel when I relate to a speaker and when I’m cheering them on and it’s when they are really human, or like you say express their emotion. Words stated clear and articulate aren’t enough.

    I really loved how you mentioned “Go easy on the negative emotions” and “Finish on a positive.” I might be a bit more sensitive the rest of a general audience, but when I hear too much negative I tune out or walk away. – and when a speaker takes me to darker depths, I like them much more when they leave on a positive note. – Great advice for speakers and it can be equally applied to writers – simply great insight & advice!!
    Aileen´s last great post ..Kaizen Vision Guest Appearance at Live Bold and BloomMy Profile

    • Welcome back Aileen

      If all a speaker wants to do is use words… they can just give us a handout.
      We look for emotions and feelings.

      Negative emotions can be a real downer.
      I always put the negative bit in the middle of a speech.

      I lead into it with light hearted material and I finish on a great big positive message.

      See you next time.

  11. Hi Keith, excellent advice on showing emotion in public speaking. I love the added touch of photos.
    Rose´s last great post ..The key to Blogging SuccessMy Profile

    • Hi Rose
      Nice to see you back.
      Thanks for your comment and glad you liked the photos.

      Photos all free from Flickr – can’t be bad.

  12. Hey Keith,

    Awesome post, love it,

    Emotions when running wild sometimes get the better of us, it is important to control our emotions and use them in a positive way.
    Dan Lew´s last great post ..Why Technical Guys Like Us Are Not Good In Front Of The Video CameraMy Profile

    • Welcome Dan
      Always good to have a new visitor.

      True… we need to be in control. For a warning to us all, take a look at Ladybird Patricia’s comment above.

      Hope to see you again.

  13. Keith: Wow. That was a great post with some really helpful information. I really think you make a great point of how you can use emotions to really connect with your audience in a sincere and genuine way. That really is so important and I thought this was all great advice. I really liked how you explained all the different pieces and the potential pitfalls to avoid. Very helpful and some good advice to put to use.

    Sibyl – alternaview´s last great post ..How to Make Everything Work to Your AdvantageMy Profile

    • Welcome back Sibyl

      As you say “sincere and genuine” is what it’s all about.
      Your subject has to be something that you are passionate about and the audience will pick up that passion.

      Looks as though Alternaview is really thriving – must be all your hard work.
      Nobody said blogging was easy. LOL

  14. Hi Keith, thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment.

    This is a very informative post and extremely well written.

    I don’t do public speaking Keith, but i do have a blog where i comunicate with my readers. I will re-read this post over and again as I know that a lot of what you say here can be used to improve my blogging and the relationship i have with my readers.

    The pictures that you have included also help to emphasis your point.

    Excellent Keith, thanks.

    Barry Wells´s last great post ..The Newbies Guide Part 11- Plus A Gift- A Guide and A VideoMy Profile

    • No Problem Barry
      You have some great articles on your site for anyone interested in improving their blogging skills.

      Public Speaking and blogging are both about making contact with people so they aren’t so different.

      Appreciate your comment.

      BTW – glad you liked the pictures

  15. I used to think that emotions made us weak . Really . But you have totally changed my view of it . It makes us beautiful! Thank you!

    • Hi Mr TTDWYGB
      Very entertaining website you have there.
      Appreciate your comment.

      • Hi Keith,

        What a gentle, humorous tone you write in–do you speak in the same way?

        I like this post. I believe emotions usually run the show and you really broke it down for us.

        • Hi Adena
          Thank you for your kind words.

          Do I speak in a gentle humorous tone?
          I try Adena, I try. LOL

          I’ll be over shortly to take a look at your blog.
          See you soon.

  16. Hi Keith,
    Thank you for the in depth analysis of this so much important topic 🙂

    I’m sure it is a pleasure being mentored by someone like you, as it requires much experience and self-awareness, sense of observation and passion to write about public speaking as you do! Great information and style.

    Emotions play huge part in what I do and it makes me really happy when my way of showing emotions brings good things for others and me 🙂

    When blogging I love to create rich media posts, because I also find these kind of posts much more interesting than just text. Also it is amazing how all those small icons 🙂 😉 can make simple text shine 🙂

    Best wishes
    Justyna´s last great post ..How to run a webinar – the key stepsMy Profile

    • Hi Justyna
      Always look forward to your comment.

      I think that you succeed in creating your “rich media posts” I always enjoy reading them and learning along the way.

      Thanks for a great comment and thanks for the lovely smileys.

  17. Hi Keith .. another really good comprehensive post – it’s refreshing to read .. because it’s easy, but yet full of detail and necessary attachment to the title ..

    Thanks – these posts will be so useful to so many others .. and I love your quotes, and photos to tie everything in ..

    Great read .. thanks Hilary
    Hilary´s last great post ..Guest Posting today over at Marketing Tips for AuthorsMy Profile

    • Hi Hilary
      Thanks for your compliments.

      Glad you like the quotes and photos.
      The photos help to break up the text and the quotes mean less writing for me. LOL

      Appreciate you stopping by.

  18. Hi Keith. Isn’t it neat how the Internet enables us to find kindred spirits all over the world? I forget how I originally came across your blog, but I am sure glad I did. First of all, you write about a subject that scares the you-know-what out of me – public speaking LOL. Second of all, you write about aspects of it that I can so relate to.

    Emotions are what makes us human – it helps others relate to us on that level, yet it is an area that many people are not comfortable showing to others. I love the way you suggest to speakers that they use more than just their words to show their emotions. Non-verbal communication is another oftentimes overlooked really important means of communication.

    Thanks for sharing your insights 🙂

    PS – if you get a chance, check out my blog about emotions and decision-making: http://blog.newhorizons123.com/all-other-things-being-equal-your-decisions-are-based-on-emotional-responses/ – I told you we were kindred spirits 🙂
    Julie Weishaar´s last great post ..Social Media Marketing is a Waste of Time for Professional Services FirmsMy Profile

    • Good to see you back Julie

      As a Public Speaker you can use everything…
      words, body, face, voice, visual aids… have I missed anything?

      Took a look at your “emotions” post and left a comment – looks as though we are kindred spirits.

      BTW – got your email about share / retweet button. Many thanks, I’ll reply via your email.

      Appreciate you taking the time to comment and contact me.


  19. Hi Keith,

    I just answered your email. Looking forward to seeing your comment too.

    You didn’t mention tone of voice in your list above 🙂

    Sorry it is so long between visits, it takes a lot of time to get to the UK from NY LOL
    Julie Weishaar´s last great post ..Social Media Marketing is a Waste of Time for Professional Services FirmsMy Profile

    • Hi Julie
      Thanks for advice on Social Bookmarking plugin… I’ve taken a look at “addtoany” and will probably go with that.

      Tone of voice? Yes that’s another one.

  20. Hi Keith! I didn’t get ‘sad’ from the flickering candle with the photo and letter, I got ‘love’. Funny how we read totally different emotions from the same thing.

    I love when you say “Emotions let the audience know that you are human.” It’s all about connection when we are speaking to an audience. When we show our emotions, the audience can relate to us better by seeing that we are the same.

    As usual, you did a beautiful job with this post! A true delight. Loving blessings!
    Andrea DeBell – britetalk´s last great post ..5 Wacky Ideas to Stay Energized Throughout the DayMy Profile

    • Welcome back Andrea
      Flickering candle is happy? Are you mad – sad sad sad. LOL

      You’ve got it in a single word – connections.
      In may respects we are sharing our humanity.

      Super comment much appreciated.

  21. Great post, Keith!

    I like how you said to pair up funny and sad. I’d never thought of a speech that way, but come to think of it, some of the best speeches I’ve listened to have both elements, usually.

    Starry Starry Night is one of my favorite songs from when I was young. The lyrics never get old to me, especially the poignant ones that you quoted.
    Jewel Allen´s last great post ..CallingMy Profile

    • Good to hear from you again Jewel.

      Funny and sad are so powerful – as someone once said to me…
      “You made us laugh and you made us cry”
      Just have to be careful how you put the two together.

      Starry Starry Night – you look way too young to remember it. Wish I could say the same. LOL

      Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.

      • Well, I learned all those songs from my older sister 🙂

        Thanks to your post I googled the guitar chords for Vincent last night and stayed up a little playing it. Wow, that was a treat…to be able to sing and play it now.

        Have a great weekend!!

  22. Starry Starry Night aka Vincent…? 🙂
    Jewel Allen´s last great post ..CallingMy Profile

    • Jewel. I think that most people knew the song as Starry Starry Night.
      Interesting how we remember the sad bit.

      Good luck with your fundraising.


  23. Hi Keith,

    As I read this it took me back to when I had gone back to college and speech was one of my (dreaded) required topics.

    I remember one of our assignments was to give a speech on a topic which brought out our emotions. Since we had recently had a dear friend die I chose to speak about death. I swore I wasn’t going to cry, but while giving the speech got so choked up, I could hardly get the words out. When I looked at some of the students, tears were welling in their eyes, as well. When done, I remember hurrying back to my seat, somewhat humiliated for choosing the topic. When I sat down a young boy who was sitting in front of me turned around and said, “I know that had to be hard for you, but your words made me realize I haven’t talked to my dad for a long time. As soon as class is over I’m going to call him and tell him I love him. Thank you!”

    His words made it all worth it.

    That said, I do agree. When a speaker is able to mix emotions in a speech, the results can be fabulous.
    Barbara Swafford´s last great post ..Comments Can Get You SuedMy Profile

    • Hi Barbara
      Always look forward to your comment.

      That was one tough assignment you were given.

      I’ve not cried but I have heard my voice start to waver at the height of the emotion – hopefully your crying and my wavy voice show the audience how genuine the speech is.

      Notice you say “I remember hurrying back to my seat, somewhat humiliated” – guess that’s all about losing control in front of an audience – makes us feel vulnerable and in some societies it’s not the done thing.
      Probably more acceptable in the US than UK to show emotions – just a thought.

      Great comment Barbara – appreciate you taking the time.

  24. The right words are key … metaphors are swift.
    J.D. Meier´s last great post ..Getting Results the Agile Way is Now Available in PrintMy Profile

  25. Hi Keith,

    We always should express our emotions in every thing we do. This is the nice things about us humans that we we have feelings. The best emotions to express are the positive ones as they really affect others positively. Thanks for sharing my friend
    Dia´s last great post ..How to save your relationship and marriageMy Profile

    • Thanks for your comment Dia – appreciate your support.

      Emotions are the thing that make us human… that’s why we have to share them.

      Until next time.

  26. Hey Keith. Great post and very timely for me as I will be speaking on this very subject in a few days at the Geneva Communicators Network – http://bit.ly/bvOKcv

    Aristotle said that every persuasive speech was built on three pillars: Logos (the logical argument); ethos (the speaker’s credibility); and pathos (the emotional connection with the audience. You have done a great job of showing your readers why pathos is important and how to evoke it.


    John Zimmer´s last great post ..Quotes for Public Speakers No 58My Profile

  27. So enjoying your blog Keith and especially this post. To my mind, all communication is about the exchange of (appropriate) emotion. Love your examples.

    All the very best,

    And many thanks for adding ‘talk about speaking’ to your blogroll!
    Cordelia Ditton (DillyTalk)´s last great post ..How to avoid the John Prescott school of breathingMy Profile

  28. Hi Keith .. thanks for letting us know about Cordelia .. I’ve subscribed and will be over to check out her videos ..

    Seems the two of you will be really helpful to me as I set out on this speaking journey .. I will be joining the Eastbourne Toastmasters as it’s very nearby ..

    Thanks – great to have you both on hand for tips .. cheers Hilary
    Hilary´s last great post ..Spaghetti anyone Made in China or does it grow on treesMy Profile

  29. Hi Keith!!
    I liked your article very much!!
    You’re right: emotions are really important and make you feel alive!! We’re humans, not robot! Unluckily our world doesn’t like people with emotions a lot, but we should remember not to lose them!
    Thank you a lot!!

    • Welcome back Laura
      Appreciate your kind words.

      What are you up to on your blog?
      Are you still posting about God’s own county… Yorkshire?

      I’ll be over later to take a look.
      Thanks for stopping by.

      BTW – what do you think of the anti spambot plugin? No captcha, only need to click.

      • I think the anti spambot plugin it’s a good thing!! It’s easy: just a click!!!
        (I cannot put it on my blog, because I’ve got the free version for now!!).
        Have a nice day!! 🙂

  30. Nice article Keith. Not only have you given us concrete examples on how to incorporate emotions in public speaking but you’ve also done an excellent job of incorporating examples in your post.
    Sherryl Perry´s last great post ..Guest Post- 10 Steps to Inking Successful Deals by James AdamsMy Profile

  31. Keith,

    This article is a full course in using emotions in public speaking.

    I’m testing out your comment system.
    Lillie Ammann´s last great post ..Blog Action Day 2010- WaterMy Profile

  32. One word I didn’t see in your post is “passion.” Maybe that equates to emotion. But if you are really passionate about something — really believe in it — it will show in your public speaking and your writing. I find that the more passion I have about a subject when I’m writing a blog the easier the words flow. It’s very difficult to write or speak about something and bring your emotions — or passion — to it when you don’t believe in it with all your heart.

    • Welcome Jeannette
      And thanks for a great comment.

      Passion, passion, passion.
      You are so right, If you have real passion for your subject it will show and be picked up by the audience.

      Guess that’s why we all blog about subjects we are passionate about.

      Thanks again and I hope you’ll be a regular visitor.

  33. Wow. I loved how you designed this post. Your opening is perfect to grab my attention and make me want to read on. Then the photos are a great lead-in to your excellent advice about using emotions in a speech.

    Last, but DEFINITELY not least…the advice you give comes with such warmth and wit that it makes me actually wish I was a public speaker! I know you’d make me be the best one I could possibly be:~)
    Sara´s last great post ..Story Photo- Wood PicturesMy Profile

    • Thanks for a wonderful comment Sara.
      I’m still blushing.

      Glad you liked the photos, I thought that they helped break up the text and provide some interest.
      All free from Flickr – can’t be bad.

      See you over at your blog.

  34. Aloha Keith, such eloquence as a poet and sincerity to your post. Like a love story, on emotions of how to be. Very beautiful and you have the vision to grab my attention as well as so many others, what a gift and blessing. Thanks for sharing! Lanikee.com 🙂

    PS..come by and share a sweet comment. The benefits are sharing is caring. Mahalo!

    • Welcome Lani
      Great to have new visitors and thanks for your generous words.

      I’ve already visited your blog and left a couple of comments.
      Very impressive – your blog that is, not my comments. LOL

  35. Wonderful article and site! I remember my first public speaking contest in grade school- I felt so nervous and terrified.

    Great tips for public speakers, I shall definitely pass them on to my young boys.

    Thank you for visiting, and for your comment. 🙂
    Melanie´s last great post ..SafeMy Profile

    • Welcome Melanie
      Glad you like the site and many thanks for your comment.

      Most of us have had a similar experience at school… and haven’t given a speech since.
      Thanks for making that point Melanie.

  36. Hi Keith,
    That is simply amazing. You have always been an inspiration for a detailed work, since we first met in 2004. I admire your dedication towards communication skills !

    All the very best,

    • Hi Vishal
      Great to hear from you… people still remember you from your days at Sans Souci Speakers Club.

      I think that you would have become a first rate Public Speaker but it looks as though you are doing some really interesting things over at http://alchemytrainings.com/

      Thanks for making contact and please keep in touch.


  37. Whenever I communicate with other people, I make sure to use facts then from there, all my emotions will just come out. All depends on the topic, all depends on my audience. You actually need to play there emotions to get their attention. It’s a difficult job but can be very very effective.
    Aaron Fuller´s last great post ..Reverse Phone Number LookupMy Profile

  38. In my experience people always buy with their emotions and only use their analytical powers to justify the emotional decision they’ve already made.

    • Welcome Roz
      Appreciate your comment.
      I’ll visit your site later and see what you blog on.
      BTW – only just spotted that you’ve got an avatar.

  39. Hi Keith,

    I think you’re completely right. When you speak with passion and emotion, then people listen at a deeper level.

    I remember all my clients as a result of their stories. I care for every one of my clients and when they tell their story (with emotion) I know I’m not going to forget them easily.

    Likewise if you speak with a story then you think about your story and not you, meaning you can feel a lot more confident.


    Tom Breeze´s last great post ..What do you wantMy Profile

    • Hi Tom

      Thanks for coming over and leaving a comment – much appreciated.

      Love what you are doing over at your site. Your videos are top notch and I’d recommend anyone interested in Public Speaking or Presentations to pay you a visit.

      BTW – Just put you in my blogroll.

      Merry Christmas.

  40. Hey Keith,

    I’m glad you enjoy my site and thanks for including me in the blogroll. You know, we should have a chat about doing something together.

    Let’s chat in the New Year.

    Merry Christmas to you too!


    Tom Breeze´s last great post ..What do you wantMy Profile

  41. Hey Kieth, wouldn’t emotions all depend on the subject you’re speaking about? If say for example you were doing a lecture on economics I would say that it would be pretty difficult to show true emotions. Perhaps in a case such as the emotions uses would have to be an act more than anything else?

    Perhaps I’m being difficult on this one and I don’t mean to be I’m just a little curious as to what your answer would be.
    Sire´s last great post ..There’s More To Helium Than Meets the EyeMy Profile

    • Hey Sire,

      I like your question and I’d like to offer my opinion… I always train my guys to speak using the 6 deepest needs – certainty, variety, growth, connection, significance and contribution.

      If you speak and relate what you’re talking about to these 6 deepest needs then you’ll connect with all of your audience.

      I hope that makes sense – let me know if not!


      Tom Breeze


      Tom Breeze´s last great post ..Brilliant Storytelling – The Finer PointsMy Profile

      • Man, I wish I proof read my comment before I hit submit 🙁 Never mind, as they say ‘shit happens’.

        Hi Tom, didn’t realize you were in the same game as Keith; now I have two of you to put up with. 😉

        As Keith knows I’m not one that would ever attempt public speaking but even so I’m interested in the subject. The only point that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense is growth. How exactly does that fit in?
        Sire´s last great post ..There’s More To Helium Than Meets the EyeMy Profile

        • Hi Sire,

          Growth – it’s a need within all of us to grow and keep growing. We like to grow as individuals, but also we like to see the things we deem important to grow.

          For instance, if we take Keith’s brilliant comments, ““So we can define a recession with just two short equations, but what does a recession really mean?
          It means bankruptcy for half a million businesses.
          It means people like you and me losing their homes.
          It means two and a half million people standing in the dole queue….
          You won’t see that in those two short equations.”

          As some point during the presentation (near the beginning) I’d also include something like:

          “I’m sure that you like me, don’t want to be forced to take a backward step in your career. I’m sure we’d all agree that we want to be able to grow our businesses/professional careers faster than we ever thought possible… and that’s exactly what Keith is going to show you.”

          Pull on the motivations around growth. I hope that helps Sire.


          Tom Breeze´s last great post ..Brilliant Storytelling – The Finer PointsMy Profile

        • Hi Sire,

          Just checked out your blog post about Helium too which is really interesting.
          Tom Breeze´s last great post ..Brilliant Storytelling – The Finer PointsMy Profile

      • Hi Tom

        Thanks for helping out.
        Always appreciate your opinion.


    • Hi Sire

      Putting emotion into a speech on economics?

      Economics is about equations, graphs, statistics… pretty dry stuff. Your job as a speaker is to show how that theory affects the lives of real people.

      If your audience were economists, at some point you might say….

      “So we can define a recession with just two short equations, but what does a recession really mean?
      It means bankruptcy for half a million businesses.
      It means people like you and me losing their homes.
      It means two and a half million people standing in the dole queue….
      You won’t see that in those two short equations.”

      Suddenly economics is no longer boring because it’s about real people and real lives.
      If ever a subject needed emotion, its economics.

      Great question Sire.

  42. @Tom, Yes thanks, I now see how you and Keith brought emotion into it.

    As to Helium, I’m glad you found it interesting.
    Sire´s last great post ..There’s More To Helium Than Meets the EyeMy Profile

  43. I absolutely love this quote by Shakespeare – “If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”

    That aside, I think this advice can be used with all creative professions, no matter what you do.

    With blogging, for example, readers like to connect with you through emotions. I often feel more connected when the blogger shares a bit about himself and puts himself out in the open, which is also why I strive to do the same.

    By sharing bits and pieces of yourself, you become much more than just an informative human being, but your audience can relate to you and feel what you felt. In that way, your audience will then remember you once the speech is over and everyone is making their way out the door.

    You impact your audience in a way that they have never been impacted before. That, in my honest opinion, is worth remembering.

    Christina Crowe´s last great post ..Stuck on Your Next Blog Post Idea Change it Up with 14 Blog Post FormatsMy Profile

    • Hi Christina

      Welcome and thanks for a great comment.

      Notice that you say…
      “That aside, I think this advice can be used with all creative professions, no matter what you do.”
      You’re right.
      Emotion can be used in all creative professions, including blogging.
      Trouble is, we try and give people too many facts and not enough emotion.
      As the post title says…
      Facts tell emotions sell.

      Have a great 2011 and hope you’ll be a regular visitor.

  44. There were quite a few things I wanted to quote in this article, it was tough to choose what part to respond to, haha. I think the two things really stood out to me were: Emotions help us to remember and Emotions make us take action

    This is very true. Nothing will encourage someone to take action more than emotion. Emotions are the reason we make most of the decisions that we do in life!
    Ryan´s last great post ..Happy New Year!My Profile

    • Hi Ryan
      Good to see you back.

      You’ve picked out the two most important parts of this post…

      “Emotions help us to remember and Emotions make us take action”

      That’s the post in two short lines.

      Please keep in touch in 2011.
      Keith Davis´s last great post ..Look for the Shining EyesMy Profile

  45. I like to come back and re-read your posts Keith (and I’m looking forward to more). As I read this post today I was thinking about how to apply your suggestions to speaking to an audience via video. Most of what you said applies well. Not sure about the audience of 3,000, and how that would apply – but I laughed out loud when you asked for the name of the agent!

    I love how you write. It would probably be wonderful to see you speak. Nice use of images and quotes too. You’ve got some excellent pillar posts on your blog. I do feel better that when I arrived. Thank you!

    Theresa Bradley-Banta´s last great post ..Mondays Are For Kicking AssMy Profile

  46. Emotions are difficult for me to write. Personally, I tend to lose friends and jobs when I show my emotions, and I lose myself when I don’t. I have no clue how to be funny outside of my close family and few best friends. I would love to learn, but the tips and how-to’s I read about it are pure mysteries. What’s intuitive to others is lost on me. =)

    Frustration! I do frustration pretty well, though. =)

    Delena Silverfox@Coupon Codes´s last great post ..iContact Coupon CodeMy Profile

  47. Hi Keith,

    This is such an awesome post. I read it the other day when I visited and came back today to read it again. It stuck with me. Very impressed.

    I absolutely loved all of your points. Brilliant and very well told.

    And I laughed when you said something like, if you are speaking to 3,000 people, send me the name of your agent! LOL. Love that. Subtle humor.

    My impression of the top picture is the same as yours. Anything with a lit candle presented in such a way reminds me of sorrow.

    My favorite pic in this post is the one of the ladies showing huge emotion. Really drives your point home.

    Excellent work! I’ll be back. 😉
    Deb Augur´s last great post ..6 – Screen Capture VideoMy Profile

    • Thanks for visiting Deb and for such a super comment.

      “My impression of the top picture is the same as yours. Anything with a lit candle presented in such a way reminds me of sorrow.”
      I’m with you, has to be bad news.

      I’ve listened to so many speeches, but the few I remember, got through to my emotions.
      All great speeches grab your emotions.

      Until next time.

  48. hey Keith:)

    I would like to invite you to take part in a nice challenge! We are running the “one question challenge” on my blog, with great prizes. There is one question, and multiple interesting possible results.
    🙂 ciao
    Martyna Bizdra´s last great post ..At Last! Enter the Challenge and Win Over 300My Profile

    • Hi Martyna
      How is my favourite Architect?
      Thanks for stopping by.

      “One question challenge” – sounds daunting.
      I’ll take part if you assure me that it’s an easy question.
      So is it an easy question?

      I’ll be over this weekend to give it a go.


  49. Leaned on every word!

    I’m going to turn myself into a “fact-spitting machine” for just a moment …

    When I first started doing some legwork to hone my public speaking skills (about a hundred years ago), it came to my attention 93% of communication is body language and only 7% the words we speak. That blew me away! Since then, I’ve worked the hardest to master the use of body language signs and signals.

    Love your post. Poignant quotes and all!

    • Hi Melanie
      I was going through my emails after a long day, and I find you comment, picked me up straight away.

      Thanks for reading my oh so long article.
      I was in my “I need to tell the world everything” phase when I wrote it.

      On the subject of body language, read this article and see what you think.
      I’ve read Max Atkinson’s book, so I wasn’t surprised.
      Let me know what you think.

      Thanks for your comment, really lifted my spirits.

      I’ll pay you a visit over the weekend.