How to Write a Great Bottom Line For Your Next Talk

Came across this great post from Carey Nieuwhof on how to write a killer bottom line for your next talk. Here’s a clip:

Rework your bottom line using the tools in the CREAM acrostic (another tool I picked up from Preaching Rocket.)

C – CONTRAST  Combine two contrasting ideas – the past and the future, the light and the dark, the rich and the poor, truth and lies, laughter and sorrow. In a recent series at Connexus where I profiled Haman (a politician featured in the book of Esther), I used contrast to come up with this bottom line: “A life devoted to self ultimately leaves you alone.”

R – RHYME   This is one of the oldest memory tricks in the book, which is why you remember one of Benjamin Franklin’s quotes: “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” The bottom line for Andy Stanley’s Comparison Trap series was simply “There’s no win in comparison”. Sticky.

E – ECHO  Repeating a word or phrase is a powerful way to help people remember. A few years ago when I preached on burnout I used this bottom line: “If you don’t take the Sabbath the Sabbath will take you” (That’s a paraphrase of 2 Chronicles 36 by the way. Great bottom lines help people understand scriptural principles better, which is kind of the goal, isn’t it?)

A – ALLITERATION Alliteration may be overused by preachers, but don’t entirely abandon this technique – it’s powerful. “Your boldest moments are your best moments” (from our Bold series) is memorable because of the double b. Simple but it works.

M – METAPHOR  Metaphors engage people’s imagination, and when that happens, people remember more. The Bible is actually full of metaphors (like a ring in a pig’s snout). “When grace and truth collide, your ability to make an impact soars” uses metaphor to show potential. (That line is from our Collide series.)

Click here to read the rest of Carey’s post.

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What tips would you add to Carey’s list?

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