A good best man speech structure is the key to success
The modern wedding is far more flexible, nowadays, in regard to who will be speaking and conducting the toasts. For this reason it is extremely important that you discuss, with the Bride and Groom, the format before you start to prepare your best man speech. That said the best man speech structure that I present here is suitable for most types of weddings. Follow this and it will provide good insight into what is expected of you and allow you to focus your speech preparation and research.
The following structure is not intended to be rigid and should not be interpreted as such. Obviously some sections you should consider as mandatory, such as "Open the speech", whilst others are not. Additionally there is no reason why you cannot reorder some of the sections.
Open the speech
Typically you would open the speech by introducing yourself and, perhaps, mention your relationship with the Groom. It is vital that you start confidently to ensure you gain the full attention of the guests.
Give thanks to others
Take a brief moment to thank key participants, such as the Ushers and Pageboy. Other people to thank may be friends and family that have assisted with the wedding preparation.
Unsettle the Groom
Promise the guests that you have some embarrassing stories about the Groom to follow. You can go over the top here, unsettling the Groom doesn't really mean you are going to reveal all!
Give thanks on behalf of the Bridesmaids
If the Groom has commented on the Bridesmaids or presented gifts then it is customary to thank him, on their behalf. This part is important so don't forget it!
Congratulate the wedding couple
Make it sincere and keep it brief. The couple have probably been congratulated non-stop since leaving the church. Nonetheless you will also want to formally congratulate them, so this is your opportunity.
Admire the Bride
Remember this is her big day so keep it sincere. There is no reason why you can't have a little dig at the Groom, at this point, though! For instance you could mention how lovely she looks and feign surprise at her agreeing to marry the Groom.
Put in some humorous anecdotes
This is the point where you can recall stories about the Groom, usually recalling some of the antics that you both got up to in the past. You can also recall some stories here about the Bride and Groom's relationship, including how they met.
Ridicule the Groom
Time for the character assassination! Remember, though, don't go over the top and particularly don't mention his past relationships.
This is the part where you can add some personal sincerity. You could mention how proud you are to be the Best Man, include some praise for the Groom and perhaps mention your relationship.
Offer some advice
You can add your own thoughts on marriage to both the Bride and Groom. Typically this would be light hearted and humorous, but can also be sincere.
Read some messages
Read some messages from absentees, some humorous spoof messages, include a famous quote or perhaps a poem.
Close the speech
It's time to wind up your speech. You could mention how relieved you are that it is nearly over and reiterate some thanks and how proud you are. Also if there are any announcements that need to be made then make them now.
Propose a toast
Finish with a toast to the Bride and Groom.
If you include all of these sections, from the best man speech structure presented, then you can be confident of giving a funny best man speech that ticks all of the right boxes in regard to etiquette. Remember, though, to research properly to ensure you set the correct speech tone. The Groom and your friends may think it funny if you mention some of the skeletons in his closet but some of the other guests may not!
For suggestions on content for your speech browse our database of best man speech material. This is packed with speech one-liners, humorous anecdotes and Groom put-downs, all categorized and grouped into the best man speech structure presented here.
If you don't have a lot of time then our professionally written best man speech templates are also defined by our standard best man speech structure.
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