5 Mistakes to Avoid During Closing Remarks of a Speech
Is your speech for your next event prepared and ready to go? The introduction and body of your presentation might be in good shape. But don’t forget about your closing remarks.
Often, your audience will remember your final words the longest. So don’t waste this important part of your speech. It can be difficult to craft closing remarks that are brief but make an impact on your audience. With a few small changes, however, you can end your speech with a bang.
Here are five common mistakes you should avoid during your closing remarks for a speech.
1. Only Saying “Thank You”
It’s never a bad idea to thank your audience. But only saying “thank you” can feel abrupt. It doesn’t drive your points home. Don’t just be polite — give your conclusion some meat so your audience will walk away remembering every word.
For a more impactful end to your speech, summarize your message in a few simple sentences. Then provide some actionable next steps the audience can take. After finishing this conclusion, you can then say “thank you” before exiting the stage.
2. Not Tying Up Loose Ends
Make sure you hit all of the points you say you will. If you say you’re going to cover four steps but then only mention three, your audience will notice. And they’re going to be so busy wondering what happened to step #4 that they won’t remember your other three points!
Maybe you’re approaching the end of your speech when you realize with horror that you forgot to cover one of your points. If so, don’t panic. Just find a way to naturally slip it in.
If you can’t come up with an idea on the fly to smoothly add in your extra point, own up and tell your audience that you forgot a point in the middle, but you’re going to give it to them now.
They’ll appreciate both the transparency and the extra information. And you’ll conclude your speech without leaving any important strings hanging.
3. Not Summarizing Your Main Message
The primary point of your speech should be crystal clear. Don’t make your audience figure it out for themselves — spell out the main message of your talk.
Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, and then tell them what you told them.
Every part of your speech should tie back to the central point. Make sure you’re clear about how your sub-points support or relate to that main message. And the end of your presentation should circle back around to the beginning.
Remember, people are most likely to retain what you say at the very end of your speech. So don’t lose this opportunity to summarize your main message and help your audience remember it even after they leave.
4. Not Including A Call-to-Action
If you don’t end your speech with a strong call-to-action, you’re just leaving money on the table. The whole point of public speaking is to get people to take action.
A call-to-action is an absolutely essential part of your speech. Think of it as the end of a sales presentation: Decide what action you want your audience to take, and then get them to take it.
What goes into a good call-to-action? Your call-to-action should be a strong and decisive statement — a sentence where you could put an exclamation point at the end. Make it easy for your audience to take action by being clear and direct.
Tell your audience what you want them to do, and they’ll do it.
5. Not Utilizing Inflection in Your Voice
Your audience is perceptive to not only what you say, but how you say it. Use your tone of voice, inflection, and pitch to signal that things are wrapping up.
Your body language plays a part here, too. You might choose to pick up your speech notes from the podium or close a book that’s been open in front of you.
Many speakers will pick up their energy and emphasis as they deliver the conclusion to their speech. This tactic can reinforce to the audience that it’s time to sit up and pay attention.
If you want to effectively introduce, explain, prove, and reiterate your key talking points, download my 5 Minute Speech Formula.
About Brian Tracy — Brian is recognized as the top sales training and personal success authority in the world today. He has authored more than 60 books and has produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs on sales, management, business success and personal development, including worldwide bestseller The Psychology of Achievement. Brian's goal is to help you achieve your personal and business goals faster and easier than you ever imagined. You can follow him on Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin and Youtube.