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How to create “quotable quotes” for #ThoughtLeadership (pt2) – use the sound of words

Here’s one way  can make your messages more memorable and create “quotable quotes” – use the sound of words.


You can use poetic devices such as:

1. the repetition of consonants at the starts of words (alliteration)

2. the use of perfect rhyme or “close”/”near” rhymes.

1. the repetition of consonants at the starts of words (alliteration).

Sometimes it’s the repetition of a sound – even if the letter is different and even if the sound appears within a word.

Here’s one of my favourite lines from Martin Luther King’s  I have a Dream speech

“…judged not by the Colour of their sKin – but by the Content of their CharaCter”

Another favourite speech is President Ronald Reagan’s address to the nation after the Challenger disaster:

The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted – it belongs to the brave.

2. the use of perfect rhyme or ” close” rhymes.

Do you remember the O.J. Simpson trial?

What was the most memorable “quote” from that trial.

This shows even lawyers can use rhyme – when they want a message to be memorable.

“If the glove doesn’t fit – you must acquit.”

word nerd CU

When I train lawyers to connect with “everyday” people, I encourage them to not just talk about the details of legislation – but to start with the effect the laws will have on people.

My “quotable quote” is:  Implications before legislation

One of my favourite experts on presenting and story-teling Doug Stevenson often used rhyme to make his lessons memorable.

Emotion is the fast lane to the brain.

You don’t want to rhyme all the time or you’ll sound like Dr Seuss!

Rhymes can help make message sound “right and logical” because the words “fit”.

So when you want to make message memorable and create quotable quotes – dare to use the sound of words.

Not everyone likes rhyme. If you feel uncomfortable with rhyme – try using alliteration.

As I encourage clients when I help them create quotable quotes – you need to do two things – compress and express.

The sound of words is part of how you express your message.

If you have a favourite quote that used the power of the sound of words – please share in the comments section below.

Bruce Van Horn

This post is part of a series inspired by Bruce Van Horn who shares lots of great quotations – from other people and quotes he crafts himself.

Bruce is often sharing inspiring or amusing quotes from others.

Quotes like:

Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. – Arthur Ashe

The last time I threw myself a pity party very few people came and none of them brought presents! – Zig Ziglar


In each post, I’ll link to other posts in this series:

1. how-to-create-quotable-quotes Pt 1

It’s worthwhile taking the time to learn how to express your expertise in quotable quotes.

Be bold and brave and dare to create and use some of your own quotes.

When a quote gets your attention or makes you nod your head in agreement – take time to study it and work out WHY.

It could be the structure or repetition or the sound of words.

Please share any of your favourite quotations in the comments section below.

My coffee hasn’t kicked in this morning – so I’m struggling to come up with a zippy, witty quote to finish this post.

Im sure there is a wise and comforting quote somewhere to assure me -not to worry about it:)



If you enjoyed this post – Let’s connect:

If you found this post interesting you can follow me and connect with me.


I blog about fun pop culture stuff as well as more serious  business communication tips.



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These days, lots of people and organisations need help with how to COPE with too much work, too much information, too many meetings, delivering difficult news etc.   I like to help people COPE.



One comment on “How to create “quotable quotes” for #ThoughtLeadership (pt2) – use the sound of words

  1. efangelist
    January 23, 2016

    Reblogged this on efangelist.

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