Closing Your Pitch

Closing your pitch

As you close the presentation, you want to give it one last surge of energy. How you end will determine what people will remember from your presentation. It will also decide if you could get the outcome you were looking for. Here are a few ideas, done well that can help achieve that.

Leave a surprising fact

A fact that shows the cost of inaction - nothing drives home the message better. Use a credible source, keep the message grounded and ensure it resonates. Illustrate how the competition is leveraging the opportunity you just presented and benefitting.

Remind what the conversation started with

As you draw a close, remind the audience about what outcome you promised. Walkthrough how you suggested approaching it and what the end state would look like.

Leave a stunning visual

End with a visual

A summary, a possible roadmap, perhaps an end-state architecture would be a great last slide. By far more useful than how most people end theirs - with a ‘Thank you’ or a ‘Questions’ slide.

Make it visual, annotate with highlights, notes from through the presentation. Offer to have them use it as a reference one-pager for internal discussions. Use the opportunity to leave a long-lasting impact on the listeners

If it’s time-sensitive, show the urgency Opportunities might come with a time window, create the visualization for representing that. Done well, can be very powerful.

Clarify the call to action and make it clear

This last bit is the most important one. Unlike a stage presentation, this one requires a follow-on action from your audience. Propose the next steps, expected outcomes. Encourage to suggest timelines and named owners.

As a last tip - while this might not relate to closing a pitch, but still very critical. Be prompt about the follow-up. Share any reading material requested. Any minutes captured that have the next steps, timelines, and owners. Schedule follow-up meetings immediately as calendars get busy.

Photo by Antenna, Martin Shreder on Unsplash