Monroe's Motivated Sequence: Effectiveness and Use
Monroe's Motivated Sequence
Q.How effective is Monroe's Motivated Sequence in public speaking, and do well-known public speakers often use it?
During this campaign season, I'm curious as to the candidates' use of Monroe's Motivated Sequence. Do you think they're aware of this helpful tool, and do they make use out of it? How effective is it as a public speaking tool?
First some background: for anyone who doesn't know, Monroe's Motivated Sequence is a speech organization pattern outlined by Alan H. Monroe of Purdue. In persuasive speaking, he found, one needs to cover a number of steps to consistently persuade people. Those steps are:
- Attention. Just like any speech, you get the attention of the audience.
- Need. Then you show the audience a problem, or their "need." This is important, because once they are convinced there is a need, they're a lot more likely to accept your solution.
- Satisfaction. Here's where you bring forward your answer to their need with any needed explanation.
- Visualization. Then you show the world either with or without your solution. What does it look like? How are they better off with your solution?
- Action. Finally, there is the call to action. After all, persuasion doesn't matter if your audience doesn't do anything. This is normally something simple and doable within the next 48 hours (any longer and your audience will forget).
Where will you see Monroe's Motivated Sequence?
Everywhere! As for well-known speakers, take a look at
- Television commercials. First they'll show a problem, often doubling as the attention step. Oh no, the kids spilled and left a stain on carpet! Next, they'll satisfy the need - Acme stain remover does the job! Visualization next - watch the stain disappear! Everyone is happy. Action? Buy Acme stain remover on your next trip to the store!
- Authors. Think about most self-help books. First off, there's your problem. Next, their system for fixing it. While it might be split up a bit, throughout the books you'll find 'visualizations' of what your world will be like once you implement their systems. Many of the most popular self-help books (think 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and 4-Hour Work Week) have 'baby steps' at the end of each chapter - can you say action step?!
- Politicians. Their speech writers, at least, know and use this tool.
Monroe's and Politicians
When speaking of politicians, I don't know if they specifically are directly aware of Monroe's... but I can guarantee that their speech writers are! Take a look at possibly the most popular speech of this campaign cycle, Barack Obama's "Yes We Can":