Types of Public Speaking: Motivational Speaking

Public speaking is an essential skill that has the power to inspire, educate, and transform lives. Among the various types of public speaking, motivational speaking holds a special place as it empowers individuals to reach their full potential and achieve success.

This blog delves into the world of motivational speaking, unpacking its different forms and providing insights on how to become a proficient speaker who captivates audiences.

Key Takeaways

  • Motivational speaking is a unique type of public speaking that aims to inspire and transform people’s lives through the power of spoken words, helping listeners overcome challenges and achieve their goals.
  • There are different types of motivational speakers, including transformational, inspirational, instructive or educational, activist speakers and business speakers. Each type requires different strategies and techniques to achieve its desired effect.
  • Successful motivational speakers possess qualities such as confidence, authenticity, empathy, storytelling abilities, and good communication skills.
  • Motivational speaking can help individuals gain new perspectives and insights into how they can overcome obstacles and pursue their dreams. It also empowers audiences with newfound confidence and belief in themselves – ready to tackle any challenge that comes their way!

Understanding Motivational Speaking

Motivational speaking is a type of public speaking that aims to inspire and transform people’s lives through the power of words, helping listeners overcome challenges and achieve their goals.


Motivational speaking is a unique type of public speaking that aims to inspire and transform people’s lives through the power of spoken words.

A compelling example of motivational speaking comes from Tony Robbins, a well-known life and business strategist who has inspired millions worldwide with his powerful messages about personal development and self-improvement.

He uses stories, anecdotes, analogies, humor, emotion, and other persuasive techniques to captivate his audience’s attention while delivering actionable advice that can lead them towards success.

Importance And Benefits

Motivational speaking is essential in today’s society because it helps to inspire and motivate people to achieve their goals. It is a form of public speaking that focuses on self-improvement topics, personal development, and business or community-related issues.

Motivational speakers can be industry leaders, inspirational speakers, educational speakers, activist speakers, or youth speakers.

The benefits of motivational speaking are numerous. By listening to a motivational speaker, individuals gain new perspectives and insights into how they can overcome obstacles and pursue their dreams.

Speakers who share personal stories about overcoming adversity can inspire listeners to take action and persevere through challenging times themselves.

Types Of Motivational Speaking

Motivational speaking is a broad category that encompasses several types of speeches. The most common types include transformational speakers, who aim to facilitate self-improvement through personal development; inspirational and motivational speakers, who aspire to motivate people with their stories and experiences; instructive or educational speakers, who deliver talks that help audiences learn new skills or knowledge; activist speakers, whose speeches focus on social change and community activism; and business speakers, who share insights into the industry they operate in.

Each type of motivational speaking requires different strategies and techniques to achieve its desired effect. For instance, activists often use emotionally charged language to engage their audience while business leaders use data-driven arguments to persuade decision-makers.

Different Types Of Motivational Speakers

There are various types of motivational speakers, including transformational speakers who focus on bringing about personal change, inspirational and motivational speakers who aim to uplift their audiences, instructive or educational speakers who provide practical tips for self-improvement, activist speakers who strive to bring social change through their talks, and business speakers who specialize in leadership and professional development.

Transformational Speakers

Transformational speakers are a type of motivational speaker who focus on changing people’s lives at a deep level. They aim to inspire their audience to make significant changes to achieve personal growth and development.

Some examples of transformational speakers include Brené Brown, whose talks focus on vulnerability and shame resilience, or Jay Shetty, who speaks about mindfulness and bringing more meaning into our lives.

To be an effective transformational speaker requires not only excellent public speaking skills but also deep knowledge in psychology or self-improvement topics.

Inspirational And Motivational Speakers

Inspirational and motivational speakers are among the most popular types of public speakers. They use their personal stories, experiences, and wisdom to encourage audiences to believe in themselves and achieve their dreams.

One prominent example of an inspirational speaker is Tony Robbins, who has dedicated his career to helping people overcome obstacles and reach their full potential. Another famous motivational speaker is Les Brown, whose rags-to-riches story has inspired millions around the world.

Both these speakers have honed their communication skills and used storytelling techniques to connect with audiences on a deep level.

Instructive Or Educational Speakers

Instructive or educational speakers are experts in their field who share knowledge, skills, and tools that can help their audience develop competence and expertise. They provide information that is practical and useful to the audience’s interests, such as how-to guides, tutorials, and case studies.

One of the primary goals of instructive speaking is to educate people on a particular subject matter. Whether it be personal finance management or basic programming concepts for beginners, these types of speeches offer insights on subjects that matter most to audiences – with actionable steps that they can take right away.

To be an effective educational speaker requires excellent communication skills coupled with mastery-level command over a specific subject matter.

Activist Speakers

Activist speakers are individuals who use their voice and platform to bring attention to a particular cause or issue. They’re passionate about creating change in society and often have firsthand experience with the topic they’re advocating for, whether it be social justice, environmentalism, or human rights.

Activist speakers can inspire audiences by sharing personal stories, research and statistics, and actionable steps for making a meaningful difference. Their speeches aim to raise awareness of an issue and motivate people to take action, whether it’s signing petitions, volunteering time or resources, or donating money.

Well-known examples of activist speakers include Malala Yousafzai, Greta Thunberg, and Angela Davis.

Business Speakers

Business speakers are motivational speakers who focus on helping individuals or organizations to achieve their business goals. They deliver speeches that revolve around topics such as leadership, sales, teamwork, and management.

Examples of successful business speakers include Simon Sinek, Jim Collins, and Brené Brown. These experts have delivered keynote speeches at conferences and seminars worldwide, helping entrepreneurs and corporate executives gain new insights into running a successful business.

Qualities Of A Successful Motivational Speaker

Successful motivational speakers possess qualities such as confidence, authenticity, empathy, storytelling abilities, and good communication skills.


Confidence is a crucial trait for any motivational speaker. It’s the foundation that allows them to connect with their audience and deliver powerful messages with conviction.

A confident speaker can engage, persuade, and inspire people to take action towards their goals. Confidence comes from preparation, practice, and self-belief. Effective speakers know what they want to say and how they want to say it.

In addition, confidence also comes from authenticity – being true to oneself while delivering the message in a natural voice without trying too hard or being overly scripted.

For instance, Les Brown is known for his charismatic style of speaking which exudes confidence yet feels authentic at the same time.


One of the most critical qualities that a successful motivational speaker must possess is authenticity. Being genuine and true to oneself is essential in making connections with the audience.

Inauthenticity can be easily detected, leading to a lack of trust from the audience.

For instance, consider the story of Nick Vujicic, an Australian motivational speaker born without arms or legs who shares his tale of triumph over adversity. His authenticity and vulnerability in sharing his struggles and how he overcame them inspire many people worldwide.

So, as a public speaker looking to excel in motivational speaking, it’s crucial always to remember your unique voice and perspective when crafting your speeches.


Effective motivational speakers need to have empathy towards their audience. Empathy involves being able to understand and share the feelings of others, which is an essential quality for a speaker aiming to inspire and motivate people.

For example, if a motivational speaker is speaking on personal development, they may draw upon their own experiences of struggle or disappointment in order to relate to the struggles of their audience.

Empathy also involves actively listening to your audience’s needs and concerns. A skilled motivational speaker will be able to read body language and other nonverbal cues in order to adapt their speech accordingly.

Overall, empathy plays a crucial role in successful motivational speaking by helping speakers create meaningful connections with their audiences.

Storytelling Abilities

Great motivational speakers know that storytelling is a powerful tool to engage their audience. Storytelling allows speakers to connect with their listeners on an emotional level, making it easier for them to remember the message being conveyed.

When telling stories, successful motivational speakers use vivid and descriptive language that helps paint a picture in the listener’s mind.

For example, Les Brown is known for his ability to weave personal anecdotes into his speeches seamlessly. He uses these stories as examples of how he overcame challenges and achieved success despite facing adverse circumstances.

Effective storytellers also understand the value of humor and levity when appropriate, adding texture and variation to their presentations. Humor can be used strategically as a way of breaking down barriers between the speaker and audience while making complex points more accessible and memorable.

Good Communication Skills

Successful motivational speakers possess excellent communication skills. They need to be able to articulate their ideas and messages clearly and convincingly.

Effective communication involves active listening and empathy towards the audience. By understanding their needs, thoughts, and emotions as well as adapting communication style accordingly can help achieve greater impact on them.

Moreover, good communicators know how to structure their speeches effectively with attention-grabbing introductions followed by relevant content such as storytelling or statistical data before wrapping up with a strong conclusion that gives takeaways for listeners.

Choosing The Right Motivational Speaker

Assess your audience, determine your goals, look for experience and credibility, and consider budget and logistics when selecting the right motivational speaker.

Assess Your Audience

To be a successful motivational speaker, you need to understand your audience. Different audiences have different needs and preferences, so it’s essential to assess them before crafting your speech.

Analyze their demographics, interests, knowledge levels, and expectations. For instance, if you’re speaking to a group of teenagers on personal development topics such as self-esteem or goal-setting, you may need to use humor and relatable examples that resonate with their realities.

Moreover, understanding your audience means knowing what values they uphold the most – whether they value hard work over family time or prioritize innovation over risk-taking.

The better you know your audience’s priorities and struggles; the more effectively you can craft your message to motivate them towards action.

Overall assessments help speakers create content that is valuable for their audience while delivering key messages effectively using emotionally compelling anecdotes that drive home points made during speeches – this connection ensures audiences come back for future presentations!

Determine Your Goals

As a public speaker, it is essential to determine your goals before choosing the right motivational speaker for your event.

For instance, if you’re organizing an event targeting entrepreneurs looking for business growth strategies, you may consider inviting a business speaker who can share their success story or provide insights on how they overcame obstacles in their journey.

Before deciding on a motivational speaker, ensure their message aligns with your desired outcomes. It’s also important to consider logistics such as budget and scheduling when determining your goals.

Look For Experience And Credibility

When choosing a motivational speaker, it is essential to consider their experience and credibility. A seasoned speaker with a proven track record of delivering impactful speeches will be more likely to connect with your audience and deliver results.

Look for speakers who have spoken at events similar to yours or in your industry.

Consider the speaker’s reputation in the industry and what others are saying about them. Look for reviews, testimonials, or recommendations from past clients or attendees.

For example, Tony Robbins is one of the most sought-after motivational speakers globally because he has been inspiring people for over four decades across various platforms.

His experience speaks volumes about his prowess in public speaking.

Consider Budget And Logistics

Another crucial factor to consider when choosing the right motivational speaker is budget and logistics. It’s essential to determine how much money you’re willing to spend on a speaker while considering the size of your audience, venue and other expenses involved.

You may also need to factor in travel costs if the speaker doesn’t reside in your area.

It’s important to plan ahead and book the speaker well in advance before their schedule fills up or prices go up.

For instance, if you’re hosting an event at a local community center, hiring lesser-known speakers could be cost-efficient while still having a significant impact on your audience.

By wisely considering these factors alongside others mentioned above when selecting a motivational speaking expert can help guarantee overall success for your event while leaving lasting impressions on your audience long after it has ended.

Conclusion: Motivational Speaking

In conclusion, motivational speaking is a type of public speaking that focuses on inspiring and empowering people. There are many different types of motivational speakers, including transformational, inspirational, instructive or educational, activist speakers and business speakers.

Effective motivational speaking requires the speaker to connect with their audience through their confidence, authenticity, empathy and storytelling abilities. When choosing the right motivational speaker for your event or audience, it’s important to consider your goals and assess your audience’s needs.


1. What is motivational speaking?

Motivational speaking is a type of public speaking that aims to inspire and motivate an audience towards achieving their goals, overcoming obstacles, or making positive changes in their lives.

2. What are some common techniques used in motivational speaking?

Motivational speakers often use storytelling, humor, personal anecdotes, and quotes from famous figures to connect with their audiences and convey inspirational messages. They may also use props or visual aids as part of their presentations.

3. Who typically hires a motivational speaker?

Motivational speakers may be hired by corporations for employee events or training sessions, schools or universities for assemblies or commencement speeches, non-profit organizations for fundraising events, or individuals seeking personal coaching and motivation.

4. Can anyone become a successful motivational speaker?

While it takes skill and practice to become a successful motivational speaker, anyone can develop the necessary skills through education and training programs focused on public speaking techniques such as voice modulation and speech writing. Building credibility through experience in the areas they speak on is also important for becoming an effective motivational speaker.