How Many Words in a 5 Minute Speech (Word Count)?

December 22, 2022

3 min read

A woman with medium dark skin, black hair, and glasses gives a presentation for a room full of people.

It’s helpful to write the script of a speech before delivering it live. However, it’s normal to be unsure of what number of words is enough. This article explains how many words to include in 5 minute, 3 minute, 7 minute speech, 10 minute speech and the formula behind it. We’ll also cover how quickly or slowly to speak in different situations.

How to Use AI to Figure Out How Many Words Are in a 5 Minute Speech

One of the ways you can figure out how many words are in a 5 minute speech is through an AI speech coach like Yoodli. You can record or upload a video of yourself speaking for 5 minutes and Yoodli takes care of the rest.

Using Yoodli can help you calculate the number of words in a speech.

This speech coach gives you a personalized report of all your speaking analytics, from your word choice to your speaking pace and filler word usage. It’ll use these metrics to give you actionable feedback on not just your speaking abilities, but your speech content as well.

Included in your individualized report is a transcript, which you can then use to calculate how many words are in a 5 minute speech. Just copy and paste the transcript into a word count calculator (and edit the transcript however you feel fit) and you can find out how many words were in your 5 minute speech. It’s that easy!

A screenshot showing how you can use Yoodli to figure out how many words are in a 5 minute speech.
You can use Yoodli to figure out how many words are in a 5 minute speech.

Plus, this method works for any length of speech, from 5 to 10 minutes and beyond.

How to Calculate Number of Words in a Speech

Most native English speakers speak at 140 words per minute (this varies across cultures). The typical conversational pace lies in the range from 130 to 170 words per minute. While average numbers for speaking rates are helpful, note that the variation in pace is what makes a speech interesting — you want to go fast in sections that convey excitement and slow down to pause in areas where you want the audience to think.

Software to Calculate Number of Words in a Speech

Try Yoodli’s free AI speech coaching app to see how quickly you speak. Yoodli will instantly generate your pacing analytic and compare how you did relative to celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and Barrack Obama. You’ll also see an instant transcript of your speech to help you count the number of words. Here are typical speaking rates for speeches run through Yoodli:

Number of words in 5 minute speech. Oprah Winfrey's pace of 134 words per minute is conversational

Examples of Words per Minute Depending on Speaker Type

It may not always be appropriate to speak at a conversational pace. For instance, if you’re speaking at a eulogy, you might want to come across as somber and speak more slowly.

In the same vein, you might consider speaking slower when addressing an audience that may not speak your language or won’t understand your topic (speaking more slowly gives them an opportunity to internalize what’s being said).

Alternatively, if you’re trying to demonstrate passion and excitement you might want to speak much faster than conversational pace. Think of the soccer broadcaster celebrating a World Cup goal. If they spoke at an average pace, we wouldn’t know that the goal is a crucial moment or something to celebrate.

We’ve listed some average speaking rates below:

Average speech rates

  • Presentations: Between 120 and 150 WPM for a comfortable pace
  • Conversational: Between 120 and 170 WPM
  • Audiobooks: Between 150 and 160 WPM, which is the upper range that people comfortably hear and vocalize words
  • Radio hosts and podcasters: Between 150 and 160 WPM
  • Auctioneers: Can speak at about 250 WPM
  • Commentators: Between 250 and 400 WPM

How Many Words Are in a 5 Minute Speech?

Most speakers have 650 to 850 words in a 5 minute speech, with the average at around 700 words.

How Many Words Are in a 3 Minute Speech?

Most speakers have 390 to 510 words in a 5 minute speech, with the average at around 420 words.

How Many Words Are in a 6 Minute Speech?

Most speakers have 780 to1,020 words in a 7 minute speech, with the average at around 840 words.

How Many Words Are in a 7 Minute Speech?

Most speakers have 910 to 1,190 words in a 7 minute speech, with the average at around 980 words.

How Many Words Are in a 10 Minute Speech?

Most speakers have 1,300 to 1,700 words in a 7 minute speech, with the average at around 1,400 words.

)

Start practicing with Yoodli.

Getting better at speaking is getting easier. Record or upload a speech and let our AI Speech Coach analyze your speaking and give you feedback.

Get Yoodli for free