Structure a Presentation for Clarity | Lesson 5 / 6

End Your Presentation With a Call to Action

8 min

A call to action is a short, simple statement designed to get an immediate response from the person hearing it.

Great presentations end with a call to action.

Effective calls to action have a few things in common:

1. They’re clear


A call to action should be explicit about what you need from your audience — the reason you’re giving the presentation in the first place.

Don’t imply. Don’t suggest.

Just come out and say what you mean.

Let’s practice. Sylvia is a salesperson writing a call to action for a presentation she’s giving her managers. She wants them to increase her team’s travel budget by 15%.

Currently, her call to action sounds like this:


If we have more money for travel, we’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.


What’s a way to rewrite this call to action to make it clearer?

Quiz 1 of 3

Sylvia’s call to action reads “If we have more money for travel, we’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.” What’s a way to rewrite it to make it clearer?

a
I’d like a higher budget for travel. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.
b
A higher budget for travel would really help us. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.
c
We need 15% more money for travel. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.
d
Please increase our travel budget by 15%. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.

Answer D is correct:


Please increase our travel budget by 15%. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.


It’s the only answer that explicitly asks the audience to do something.

2. They show the benefit for the audience

You need to convince your audience that what you’re asking will help them, not you (even though it will help you, too). Focus your call to action on how it will help your audience.

Sylvia’s call to action now reads:


Please increase our travel budget by 15%. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects.


How would you rewrite it to make it show the benefit to the audience?

Quiz 2 of 3

Sylvia’s call to action now reads "Please increase our travel budget by 15%. We’ll have more opportunities to learn, and we’ll meet more prospects." How would you rewrite it to make it show the benefit to the audience?

a
Please increase our travel budget by 15%. Our team will learn and grow, and we’ll meet more prospects.
b
Please increase our travel budget by 15%. The team will become better salespeople, and learn ways to convert more sales.
c
Please increase our travel budget by 15%. The sales team will generate more new business for the company, and drive more revenue.
d
Please increase our travel budget by 15%. Our team needs opportunities to learn new techniques and meet new prospects.

Answer C is correct:


Please increase our travel budget by 15%. The sales team will generate more new business for the company, and learn ways to convert more sales.


It's the only answer that focuses on what Sylvia’s managers care about: how increasing the budget will help the company.

3. They feel achievable

Remove as many barriers as you can to your audience doing what you want them to do.

If you want them to sign up for a charity drive, provide sign up sheets and pens. If you want them to buy something, have a credit card scanner on hand.

Sylvia’s call to action currently reads:


Please increase our travel budget by 15%. The sales team will generate more new business for the company, and learn ways to convert more sales.


How can she make it easier for her audience to do?

Quiz 3 of 3

Sylvia’s call to action currently reads "Please increase our travel budget by 15%. The sales team will generate more new business for the company, and learn ways to convert more sales." How can she make it easier for her audience to do?

a
Give them the contact info for the accounting team member responsible for travel budgets.
b
Give them a handout that summarizes her presentation.
c
Give them more statistics about why they need to increase the budget.
d
Give them a “create your own budget” exercise to do on their own time.

Answer A is correct:


Give them the contact info for the accounting team member responsible for travel budgets.


It gives them something easy to do right away: email the accounting team member.

TAKE THE NEXT STEP:

If you’re working on a presentation right now, write a clear call to action. Include how it will benefit your audience — that’s how you’ll get them to actually do it.

Lesson complete

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