Public Speaking Information

The Little-Known Speechwriting Secrets That Won George W Bush The US Election


He's been accused of "mangling the language, destroying its meaning by avoiding the use of verbs, twisting nouns into verbs, and endlessly repeating phrases until they become zombified" (Source:'Bush and Blair accused of mangling English' by Kate Kelland, Reuters.com.uk, Mon 15 November, 2004 12:50).

But despite this George W Bush has become the first Republican president to win re-election since Ronald Reagan in 1984.

And he's been able to motivate the US public to vote in record numbers.

In a time of stress and crisis, Bush was able to connect with the masses.

Bush - who according to language experts once famously used the word "misunderestimate", romped home with a record majority receiving 3.5 million more votes than Kerry.

Why did Bush win by so much when analysts were predicting one of the closest elections in years?

Well, the shocking truth is that Bush and his advisers are masters of modern-day speechwriting.

What would you do if you had this skill to move and motivate others?

Well, here are the little-known speechwriting secrets of how George W Bush won the US election?

Because they are universal principles, you can apply these to your own career and personal situation:

1. Strong Self-Belief

Bush has always had a strong sense of purpose to "build a safer world" and to make a difference. He is unswerving in his belief and mission to achieve this.

One of the most memorable lines in his acceptance speech summarises his own home-grown optimism and sense of destiny.

"There is an old saying, "Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers; pray for powers equal to your tasks."

What is your passion and purpose in life?

2. Certainty in an Age of Uncertainty

In times of fear and uncertainty, sitting politicians have a greater chance of being re-elected.

Bush reinforced this message in all his speeches.

For example: "To make this nation stronger and better, I will need your support and I will work to earn it. I will do all I can do to deserve your trust."

Trust was Bush's central campaign message to overcome people's anxiety about the future.

What is your central theme for your next speech?

3. Visual Imagery

Visual imagery is just as important as words in a speech, especially for people who take in information through visual rather than auditory channels.

Here are some clever ways Bush and his team maximised positive visual images in an election that was staged for television.

Pictures of his family, including that wonderful election night shot of George W relaxing in the White House with three generations of the Bush family, including his daughter, father and mother. (PS - only mothers with sons could appreciate that proud look on Barbara Bush's face as she looked over to George W)

He also used his tangible evidence of power such as alighting from the Presidential helicopter and plane to reinforce the trust and security message.

The American flag he wore on his lapel helped reinforce patriotism, as did his red tie when out on the election stump.

Interestingly, Bush wore a blue tie for his acceptance speech. This was subtle and sent the message "I'm in a different phase now, I've won the battle and its time to move on".

What non-verbal signal does your appearance send to your audience?

4. The Bush Personal Brand

The Bush personal brand is very interesting. Of course it is built on stories and everyone knows the story of the hard drinking, hard working Texan wildcat oil investor who at 40 years of age gave up drinking, found God and committed himself to public office.

In his acceptance speech, Bush reinforced this personal story and his special relationship with the people of Texas where his political career started.

"On the open plains of Texas, I first learned the character of our country: sturdy and honest, and as hopeful as the break of day.

I will always be grateful to the good people of my state. And whatever the road that lies ahead, that road will take me home."

Notice the visual imagery he uses to paint a picture of Texas and the warm feelings of home in middle-America.

How can you use this technique for your next speech?

5. Relentless Discipline

Bush ran a tight, disciplined campaign and his speeches never wavered or wandered from their key message.

Even in the glory of his win, he was focused:

"Our military has brought justice to the enemy and honor to America.

Our nation has defended itself and served the freedom of all mankind."

6. Family Values

Bush campaigned on family values - a common theme in both the US and Australian elections.

In his acceptance speech this is how he articulated these values:

"There are many people to thank and my family comes first.

Laura is the love of my life.

I'm glad you love her too.

I want to thank our daughters who joined their dad for his last campaign.

I appreciate the hard work of my sister and brothers.

I especially want to thank my parents for their loving support."

7. Shared Set of Values

Bush was attuned to the values of the heartland of America, "that heartland is spiritually and geographically the Mid West, a place of small town, conservative family values," according to Tom Carver, the BBC's correspondent in Washington.

Carver adds "Bill Clinton was a fair reflection of the laissez-faire mood of the confident, prosperous 90s. And President Bush is a mirror to the darker, more nervous post-9/11 America."

For Bill Clinton's 14 Speechwriting Secrets read my new book 'Understanding Influence for Leaders at All Levels' to be released by McGraw-Hill in February 2005.

8. Staying on Message

In the US, news is about emotion and is more orientated towards entertainment than just the facts.

Bush knew this and while he may not have the charisma of Clinton and his aversion to media conferences is well-known, his media performance during the election was one of his best.

Again, Carver from the BBC provides a great example of the legendary Bush media-savvy skills:

"There was a telling moment in his press conference ... when he was asked about the "big business" image that he and his party have. He completely ignored the question and talked instead about small businesses and how they are the engine of growth in the economy. He doesn't even allow the phrase "big business" to pass his lips."

9. Ability to Read, Reflect and Relate to Issues of Concern

Analysts predicted the US election would be a referendum on the war against Iraq.

How wrong they were. The big issues for voters were about patriotism, and in particular, who do the American people trust on:

i) Moral grounds, ii) The economy, iii) Terrorism, and lastly iv) The War on Iraq.

Bush won the moral argument in a landslide and again played this card in his acceptance speech:

"America has spoken, and I'm humbled by the trust and the confidence of my fellow citizens.

With that trust comes a duty to serve all Americans. And I will do my best to fulfill that duty every day as your president."

How can you relate to the issues and concerns of your audience?

10. A Great Call to Action

I believe the purpose of every speech should be to make a difference and move people to action.

For Bush it was for people to trust him and win their vote.

The "who do you trust theme" worked well for Bush and won him the election.

In his closer to his acceptance speech, Bush articulates this trust issue well with a clear and strong call to action:

"The campaign has ended, and the United States of America goes forward with confidence and faith.

I see a great day coming for our country and I am eager for the work ahead."

What is the 'call to action' for your next speech?

Thomas Murrell MBA CSP is an international business speaker, consultant and award-winning broadcaster. Media Motivators is his regular electronic magazine read by 7,000 professionals in 15 different countries.

You can subscribe by visiting http://www.8mmedia.com. Thomas can be contacted directly at +6189388 6888 and is available to speak to your conference, seminar or event. Visit Tom's blog at http://www.8mmedia.blogspot.com.


MORE RESOURCES:
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news


FFA member takes sixth at State Public Speaking
Mount Vernon News
MARYSVILLE — Recently, Maribeth Pozderac, a Fredericktown FFA member, attended the State Public Speaking Contest to represent Knox County and District 7 in the Extemporaneous Public Speaking portion of the contest. The event was held at Marysville ...



Cult of Mac

Master the art of public speaking [Deals]
Cult of Mac
There are few things more stressful than public speaking. But there are also few opportunities to make an impact with your ideas or message. Just think of Steve Jobs, and what comes to mind? Probably a mental image of him speaking on stage. The ...



Above the Law

Flavors Of Public Speaking: What's On The Menu For Your Speech ...
Above the Law
When we think of public speaking, it seems rather straightforward. At its essence, public speaking is the process of delivering a speech in front of a live audience. However, there are as many styles of public speaking as there are speakers! For every ...
Speech contest focuses on role of social media in personal ...UConn Daily Campus

all 2 news articles »


Digital Journal

Brandon Frere on Public Speaking From the CEO's Perspective
PR Newswire (press release)
PETALUMA, Calif., April 17, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Not every CEO is a gifted public speaker, but those who are may have a certain advantage in today's media world. While we are a text-hungry society ready to eat up shocking tweets and clickbait headlines ...
Brandon Frere on Public Speaking From the CEO& ... - Digital JournalDigital Journal

all 2 news articles »


The Guardian

Terrified of public speaking? Start with what you really want to say
The Guardian
“I want you to stick two fingers between your teeth vertically, then say a line from a nursery rhyme.” Biting my hand while trying to talk is less comfortable than lying on my back huffing out breaths to a count of 10, which is what I have been doing ...



Inc.com

3 Public Speaking Tips You've Probably Never Thought About
Inc.com
If you Google "public speaking tips," you'll find a plethora of articles on the subject. Some are helpful, but others ... not so much. So, how do you distinguish between useful methods and shady tricks that will only diminish the quality of your ...



March For Our Lives: Students Teach Us A Lesson In Public Speaking
Forbes
The high school students who have mobilized the movement “March for Our Lives” have shown us, adults, what a group of motivated and determined young people can achieve when they become engaged in an issue of importance – school safety. On March 24 ...



Entrepreneur

5 Public-Speaking Tips From Seasoned Experts - Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur
Here's a tip you probably haven't heard: Speak so slowly that it actually feels strange.
Public Speaking: 3 Key Reasons To Take The Plunge | Above the LawAbove the Law

all 2 news articles »


Reporter Magazine

Warding off Weak Knees: Tips for Public Speaking
Reporter Magazine
It's an all too familiar feeling. Your hands and legs begin to shake, the butterflies in your stomach start fluttering and next thing you know you are up in front of a crowd about to give a speech or presentation. Whether for a small class project or ...



Burlington County Times

Moorestown nonprofit teaches girls public speaking through the arts
Burlington County Times
Moorestown comedian Dena Blizzard teamed up with a group of fellow female artists to create Ladies Out Loud, a nonprofit dedicated to teaching high school-aged girls speaking tools through the arts. MOORESTOWN — Dena Blizzard was tired of being the ...


Google News

home | site map
© 2006