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How to Write an Outline for Persuasive Speech

November 1, 2019
How to Write an Outline for Persuasive Speech

You might be surprised but you don’t need to be naturally gifted or have some inherent skills to write a great persuasive speech. Such skills would be very, of course, but don’t get desperate if you don’t possess them. It is very important to have the ability to convince other people. How to do it? You just should speak from your heart. However, people who manage to do that also have certain knowledge and practice a lot. Otherwise, they would not be able to lead crowds of people. So you should not only have a passion for what you are trying to say but also know exactly how to do it. And the first step in that complicated task is to create a good outline for persuasive speech. It will state your core idea.

Purdue University professor Alan H. Monroe affirmed that when willing to create a perfect persuasive speech, one should be a bit psychologist and know the basics of that science. Below, you are offered to learn what a perfect persuasive speech outline format is and the ways to create your best persuasive speech.

Top Tips on How to Write a Persuasive Speech Outline

Working on your persuasive speech outline is an integral and very important part of writing your speech, while it is the basis of all your speech. The outline has to reflect a particular structure of a speech, which was also suggested by Alan H. Monroe in his “Monroe motivation sequence”.  It is a thinking pattern people rely on in a difficult situation or when facing a problem. That persuasive speech outline template is very effective and lots of politicians and opinion leaders follow it. You can easily get inspired by various speeches from leading public speakers and understand better how to build your speech.

So how is it necessary to start your persuasive speech outline? Here is what Monroe’s sequence looks like:

1. Grab the attention of your listeners.

2. Highlight your issue.

3. Offer your solution to it.

4. Explain how it can solve or improve the issue.

5. Let your audience know about what they need to do to reach the goal set by you.

Now let’s take a deeper look at each of the steps.

Grabbing the audience attention is a #1 step of your outline of a persuasive speech

Keep in mind that your listeners don’t have to guess what you are trying to discuss. So your task is to let them know from the very beginning how important your information is.

The introduction of your speech has to spark the interest of the audience right away. But it’s not all yet. It’s opening message has to be powerful. Also, you should give a short description of what you are going to discuss. There are several ways to make the beginning of your outline successful. If your topic allows it, it would be perfect to tell a witty joke. But some amazing statements, visual aid, or a rhetorical question are great too. Your listeners have to be captivated. Even if you tell a story from your life, it shouldn’t be boring but fascinating. Asking your audience intriguing questions is a great technique, too.

But from the very beginning, you can point out your topic and stick to it. Prove that people can trust their words. The feelings of your listeners have to be deeply touched. Otherwise, your speech won’t sound reliable. Make sure your introduction doesn’t contain humor that may offend your listeners!

Highlighting the issue is a #2 step of your outline for a persuasive speech

Now you got to the issue and you have to highlight it uniquely. It would be good if you represent it in the form of a call for action. What the action would be is to be defined by the issue to solve. In other words, your listeners have to be convinced that something requires their actions. You can do it in several ways, for example:

  • Use clear examples that demonstrate the issue. Your listeners have to get an image of the issue to solve.
  • Explain in detail what could happen if the audience ignores the problems. Also, let them know clearly why the problem concerns them.
  • Let them know exactly what they have to react to.
  • Use specific data to highlight the issue.

Offering your solution to the given issue is a #3 step of your outline for a persuasive speech

This step is crucial for your speech while here you offer the solution to the discussed issue. And you should make it clear to your audience how they can apply the solution. Now you don’t create the images but tell the listeners exactly what to do. Be convincing in letting them know why it makes the difference.

Don’t be witty now, you should give direct instructions, show the solution will be really effective. Get ready not only to prove your point of view but to convince the audience that you are completely right. No counter-arguments should compromise your point of view. Show the audience the effect of its actions. Make sure no to use words that have multiple meanings.

Providing the explanations is a #4 of your outline of a persuasive speech

Now it’s time to show the difference your solution makes. Depict clearly what the lives of your listeners would be if they listen to you. And it is even better to make people aware of what may happen to them if they don’t listen to you. At that stage, you should do the following:

  • Show the drastic difference between the futures of people who heed to your words and those who don’t. They have to realize the necessity to act promptly.
  • Show the negative consequence of the action lack clearly. They don’t have to doubt, otherwise, you fail.
  • Don’t forget to explain the positive consequences of their actions. They have to believe their future is to be better if they heed your words.

When showing the negative outcomes of their inactivity, give them examples of illnesses, social problems, etc.

Calling for action is a #5 step of your outline for a persuasive speech

This is the last step of creating texting and driving persuasive speech outline. Here you should show the urgency and convince them there is no place for procrastination. Who hesitates is lost! This is, in fact, the conclusion of your persuasive speech outline example, so it should by no means:

  • Leave space for new discussions
  • Use bandwagon techniques (telling everyone is doing it)

The example of persuasive speech outline: Organ Donation

What is MPs in a third world country would be convinced to ban organ donation?

1. Grab attention.

When allowing organ donation, we sacrifice the health of one person for the sake of others.

2. Highlight the problem.

Organ traffickers profit in the shadows, which makes “donors” and “recipients”, be vulnerable to exploitation and a lifetime of health consequences.

3. Offer solution.

A bill forbidding organ donation would help both vulnerable populations and first world beneficiaries avoid terrible health consequences.

4. Provide an explanation.

The prohibition of organ donation is to save more lives than the donation can save theoretically. 

5. Call to action.

Let’s not engage the populist rhetoric and show our care for people by supporting the bill.


Now you know what a good persuasive speech outline looks like and your aim is to create an even better one after getting inspired by the persuasive speech outline example above. Academic papers often become a challenge for students while they don’t consider them to be important for their studies and future profession. Some of the students simply want to gain practical skills which will be necessary for their career.

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