Seems like sales people are always asking me about how to make their sales presentations better. What presentation tips can I help them with to gain an advantage?
Other than the most common areas to focus upon – questioning skills to get valuable information prior to presentations and great planning and strategy are the real keys to having an effective sales presentation.
Yet, I find the need to share some practical how-to’s with my sales clients, both for confidence and the realization of when a sales presentation is going well.
So, here are six simple steps to better presentations…
Six Steps to Better Sales Presentations
The day of the talking head are gone. It is time to develop presentations that engage your prospects or customers in the process. Always remember this equation ” Involvement equals Commitment.” The more time, energy and input into the sales process a customer has, the more likely they are to commit to the next stage. No involvement equals no investment of time, energy or expense.
I’m talking about “Success Stories” of how you did things for other customers. This allows the customer to become part of the story in their minds. Being there and experiencing both the problem and the possible solution gives positive energy to your offering. This is also a method to show your experience and expertise relative to the industry and able to execute a needed solution. The more the story involves similar companies, same industry and same titles or position in the story the better for you. Use more stories and less details in your sales presentations.
Objections Are Good
Most sales people get mad or frustrated when a customer raises an objection during a presentation – bad karma. Actually, this is an excellent sign for you to develop. If a customer raises an objection during a presentation it shows their are thinking about HOW TO USE your solution and have a question that needs to be answered. No interest or no objections are the kiss of death to a sales presentation. Get excited about objections – ask questions for clarity and understanding and answer the issue with strong reasoning and emotional connections showing you care. Winning will become more commonplace for you.
Okay, the eight hundred pound Gorilla in the room will always be price. Price comes up early, often and late – so expect it. Ask questions about what they are comparing your price to so to insure apples to applies comparison. Confidently ask…”So, as I understand it, you like everything about our offering except the initial price. What would you do in my place?” This triggers a possible solution that is a lesser problem than you thought it would be. In any event, this allows for a healthy dialogue about the benefits and ROI of your offer. Show all the advantages and how your solution will be a greater improvement at any price.
Avoid using words that sound confining or harsh to the customer. In reality, most business to business selling begins after the “final” agreement to move forward. The hard work will now begin due to the customer’s dependency upon your ability to service and perform the needed milestones in the agreement. Therefore, use different terminology or words than “sign here or let’s close on the dotted line.” Use softer language such as “If you’re ready, let’s get started. or When would you like to begin? or What is the first deadline date according to your discussions?” It is a softer and more gentle way to say “Let begin.”
Review Every Presentation
This is the best way to improve your sales presentations over time. The more you do sales presentations, the better you become using this critical skill. However, if you continue to use ineffective techniques and methods, you will lose more than you will win. Therefore, ask yourself two questions after each sales presentation – What did I do Well? (You want to repeat these steps) and What do I need to Improve? (Notice this question is about what to improve rather what you did wrong. Putting a positive on this questions means you are looking for ways to improve rather than blame.) Also, it is usually very valuable to get feedback from the customer or prospect for areas you did well and what you could have improved for them. It again shows you care about them and the future sales presentations to them.
There you have six simple steps to better sales presentations. Let me know if these are helpful to you, or if something should be added to this list for more effectiveness. Either write a comment on this post or contact me direct using the contact us page on this site. I will get back to you with any questions or comments.