By Featured Speaker Arvee Robinson
Nine out of ten business presentations end with either an unimpressive “Thank you” or a feeble “Are there any questions?” Both are ineffective when it comes to persuading your audience to buy your products and services.
After many years of making business presentations, I discovered the most effective close consists of three parts: a question and answer session, an invitation (call to action), and the closing statement, respectively. Here’s how they work:
1. Question and answer session.
Most business presentations have a question and answer (Q & A) period at the end of the talk. Unless your presentation is interactive, this is the time your audience may ask questions. The Q & A section of your presentation should mark the beginning of your close, not the end. How many times have you seen a speaker ask “Are there any questions?” only to look out into an audience of blank stares and what feels like an eternity of silence. For this section to be successful, you must have audience participation.