Evoking emotion is often used in sales training, because without emotion, nobody buys the product or service you are selling. The word emotion actually has “motion” in it; it is the method of moving people
The speaker can move an audience if the points being made add credibility to the plea or call for action. The question to ask is “Did it stir or incite?” If so, then there was emotion being used.
When you tell a story you are describing details to make the audience feel what you are feeling and tasting and smelling; you are taking them through that sensory journey. Any emotion (fear, grief, anger, etc.) can be used to wake people out of their solemn state of ho-hum and is a welcome addition to the presentation as long as it relates to the message.
The message, or lyrics, of a song requires the singer to outwardly express the emotion and help the audience to feel it and hit the audience square on the nerve. The same is true of a dynamic speaker who is committed to getting the point across.
There are two main motivators: avoiding pain or seeking pleasure. Offering people freedom from something concentrates on prevention and motivates them with examples of how to avoid pain. Giving them the opportunity to seek, or achieve something stimulates creativity and motivates with the promise of pleasure.
When you know your audience’s emotional pulse, you can determine how to best approach them, and which examples and supports are most appropriate to use. For instance, if you are an investment strategist, it is important to know if those in your audience are more concerned about saving their money, or growing their money.
A survey, given before your presentation, can provide you with important information on your audience, or you can ask the audience questions as you are presenting to uncover the emotional motive. Based on that information, you may even decide to switch gears during your presentation to ensure you are on target with your audience.
As a coach, I train my clients to be effective observers while they speak, never losing sight of the audience responses throughout the presentation and never failing to notice important indicators to capitalize on and in turn help your audience benefit from.