While most presenters focus on making effective pitch deck presentations, handouts are also essential tools for clearly understanding topics.
Handouts aren’t suited for all situations like inspirational talks, for example. Business pitches, however, require more complex information and data. In this case, provide your audience with hard copies that summarize your message.
Handouts should reflect your overall business pitch, but don’t print out all your slides. Include only what is relevant—plan what your handouts should contain and only include keywords which drive your main points.
Explaining everything in one sitting might lose your audience’s interest because they’re burdened with too much information.
At the same time, presentation trainer Olivia Mitchell encourages the use of white space in handouts to let audience members write down any important questions or ideas they have while you deliver.
Instead of separating you from them, it actually helps you engage them more.
How Is It Important?
Handouts are great for business pitch decks that demand detailed explanations, especially when you’re maximizing your time while presenting your ideas.
While this isn’t a prerequisite when you do a pitch, it’s one way of making it more memorable for your audience.
Though practice and preparation prevent you from forgetting some of your key points, it’s still significant to give time for making your handout to avoid leaving your audience hanging.
When Should You Give Handouts?
Give them out before, during, or after your pitches. Each time period has its pros and cons.
Providing handouts beforehand might make them think they don’t need to listen to your pitch since they already have the information. They can also be distracted reading your handouts instead of paying attention to your speech.
But if you do choose to distribute before the pitch, let your handouts serve as a guide, not a distraction.
On the other hand, giving handouts during the pitch lets you interact with your audience and makes them feel involved. People can write down their ideas and notes on these interactive handouts, making them feel more invested in what you have to say.
If you choose to distribute handouts after the pitch, advise your audience before you begin. Inform them that you’ll provide a summary, so they won’t be distracted by listing down complex data or facts.
It’s not an issue at what point in your pitches you distribute your handouts. What’s important is that you engage and capture your audience’s attention.
Knowing your handouts’ benefits makes your pitch more memorable. They can be kept for future reference since they’re printed materials, helping your audiences remember your company after your pitch.
Giving your audience something to review lets them recall your pitch deck’s key message. pitchdeck.com can help you craft printed materials containing stand-out texts and visuals.
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“13 Best Practice Tips for Effective Presentation Handouts.” Speaking about Presenting. Accessed June 5, 2015.
“A Quick Guide to Pitch Deck Handouts.” pitchdeck.com Pitch Deck Design & Presentation Experts. 2014. Accessed June 5, 2015.
“Using Handouts.” Total Communication. Accessed June 5, 2015.