Public Speaking: What Is Anchoring?

One of the main ideas behind public speaking is called anchoring. Anchoring is a way of “marking your territory” while giving an address to an audience. When you use this anchor often enough during speaking, it will help the audience remember your words.

An example of anchoring is making sure that you stand in a specific location when you want to make a point. It can be used when giving a presentation for a business plan for your company when you want to show the audience your company’s past, present and future and how it is going to evolve and improve the business.

In anchoring you will want to choose three locations on the floor as you speak, one to the left, one in the middle and one to the right to make your point. We can call them point A, point B and point C in that order.

In order to anchor you words, you will want to stand at point A when you are speaking about the past, at point B when you are speaking about the present and at point C when you are speaking about the future.

From this illustration you can see a similarity with the way that charts are laid out. The past finances are usually on the left side while the future ones are on the right. This is just another way of making your point with your words.

You can use anchoring vocally or gestural as well and not just spatially. You can use gestures to make your point when you speak or you can use the same tone of voice when speaking about a specific point you want to make. Comedians often use this device in their acts when they want to get a laugh from the audience.

Anchoring is usually not a natural way for us to present ideas but with effort and practice you can make it appear to be natural.

You can use anchoring as a way of convincing and inspiring your audience.

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