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Call-to-Action

Captivate your audience: A Call-to-Action instead of closing formula

Mai 31, 2016

“Call-to-Action” – essential Elements

With each presentation, you are pursuing a goal: either you want to provide your audience with information or convince them about something. For sure, there is a purpose behind your statements. If you simply say “thanks you for your attention” at the end your presentation and then pack up your documents, you will miss the most important moment of your whole presentation.

Make yourself clear about what you want to achieve with your presentation. Already at the time when you start to create your PowerPoint slides, you should be aware of what you expect from your commitment. Set a clear goal to achieve with your presentation, thus you will have clear what your audience should do after it. In the rarest cases, you don´t want anything from your audience. At least, you would like to have feedback from the audience after a lecture, to see how your message was transmitted to them. Did the audience like the presentation, was everything understood, are there questions?

It is often desirable that the audience do something. Either you want to sell something or expect binding commitments to further joint actions. You might also want additional funding for a project, permission to investigate in a particular area or to be promoted by your company to a more influential position. It will rarely happen that your audience makes the effort to guess your intent between the lines. You have to end your presentation pointing out exactly what you expect. This is also called “call-to-action.” If you don´t provide a concrete “call-to-action”, your listeners probably won´t do anything.

 

Precision landing using your last sentence

Finding the right conclusion is essential to reaching your goal. You should be fully aware of the last sentence or the last sentences of your presentation. Practice what you want to say. The last sentence will probably remain longer in your audience’s minds if it is pointedly formulated. Put great emphasis on preparing your last words. Don´t hesitate to clearly say what you wish. Quietly set up a clear request for the audience. Examples:

 

  •  “I am convinced that I will present the best solution. Please support our project with your voice!”
  •  “It is now in your hands. I gave you all the necessary information for your decision. Please make the right choice!”
  •  “Now you know all the benefits of our solution. What joint steps do we want to take now?”
  • “I have explained to you what steps I consider necessary. Join now actively! Let’s make this happen!”

 

In an internal presentation, the next steps can be quite simple. The tasks to be performed up to a specified date are determined, after the presentation, together with the participants. An interview transcript will be drawn up from these agreements and emailed to each participant as a binding statement.

In an external presentation, the procedure depends on the objectives. If you want to sell a course or a book, the intend is clearly that your audience sign a sale list or buy the product locally. If you want to be elected to an office, you should convince all voters to vote for you. If you want to introduce your company to potential clients, you should use the next steps to define a cooperation.

In any case, you decide the most appropriate call-to-action to achieve your goal.


Matthias Garten founder of presentation agency smavicon an presentation expertMatthias Garten is an expert of multimedia presentations. He is businessman, speaker (TOP 100 Speaker), trainer (TOP 100 Excellence Trainer), author of various books, presentation coach (presentation training), a member of the GSA and the club 55, organizer of the presentation conference, the presentation bootcamp and presentation rocket day. In addition to PowerPoint and presentation trainings, he inspires and advises companies to present themselves in a more effective way and to stand out as competitors. He is proprietor of the presentation and PowerPoint agency smavicon Best Business Presentations and has created with his team since 1993 over 10,000 presentations for over 150 industries.

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