Tag Archives: sales presentation

Make ‘em Laugh! 7 Guideposts for Using Humor in Your Business Presentation.


Laughing audience

Many experts recommend opening your presentation or demo with a funny story, joke, quote, or prop. And why not? Humor can engage your audience, add welcome lightness to a heavy subject, and increase audience recall. Yup, humor can be a great opener….when it works.  And when it doesn’t? Few things will suck the confidence out of you faster than starting off with a joke or story that bombs, annoys or confuses your business audience. Using humor in your presentation is not without risk so be smart about exposing your funny side by following these 7 guideposts. 7 Guideposts for Using Humor in Your Business Presentation Make it relevant. I sat in on a presentation where the presenter told a story about his new dog’s obsession with his daughter’s goldfish.  It was funny, cute and heartwarming.  Unfortunately the audience’s smiles turned to stony glares after he clapped his hands together and Read More

The last time I failed to do discovery (Or how I ended up with Jell-O on my face)


Discovery for a presentation

I confess:  I haven’t always done discovery before a sales presentation.  Even when I was working at The National Enquirer many years ago where their tag line was “Enquiring minds want to know!” Like many salespeople, I was often running fast trying to make quota. And on those occasions where a prospect seemed like a natural fit, or the situation was similar to something I’d encountered previously, I would take some shortcuts (read: make assumptions). Jell-O changed all of that. I was selling advertising for The National Enquirer and although it had one of the largest print audiences in the country at that time, people – especially advertisers — had very strong opinions about the publication.  But love it or hate it, we had a core group of advertisers who used us as a primary vehicle for efficiently reaching a very specific audience: mothers with average or below household incomes. The Read More

Best Practices for Giving a Presentation on a Tablet or iPad


Woman holding an iPad

Part 2 of my series on best practices for giving a  sales presentation on a tablet or iPad. Delivering your sales presentation on a tablet or iPad can be an engaging way to grab your prospect’s attention and showcase your work or your products in a fresh, and engaging way.  The unique ability of tablets to address common selling situations in the moment makes them especially useful. Get an objection? Show a short video clip of a customer endorsement. Concerns about pricing or availability? Check inventory, price, and discounts in real time. Need to find detailed product specs? Access your data base with a few quick clicks.  Ready to seal the deal? Get a digital signature on the spot.a As user-friendly as tablets are, don’t underestimate the need to prepare and practice. I covered 5 key tips for delivering a presentation on a tablet or iPad in my last post, now here are Read More

Winning Team Presentations. Part 1: Planning


Successful business team at work.

With big dollars at stake and a significant investment of time and resources, it’s critical that you come across as a well-cast ensemble with consistent messaging, seamless interaction, and good chemistry during your team presentation. The way you interact together as a team gives your prospect an indication of what it will be like to work with your company. Sloppy transitions, disconnected messages, and discord among team members can make your prospect feel more like they’re working with a dysfunctional family than a valued business partner! How to plan a winning team presentation You want your presentation to come across as a cohesive message – not several disparate parts strung together, but team members are often spread across the country, involved in other projects, and have varying levels of knowledge, skill, and motivation. How can you ensure you’re all on the same page? How do you communicate effectively as a Read More

Gain Instant Credibility in Your Presentation or Demo with the Movie Critic Principle


Using the Movie Critic Principle

Thousands of movie-goers rely on reviews from people they’ve never met to guide them before shelling out hard cash for a movie. We are willing to trust the opinion of a disinterested third-party, whether it’s a website like Flixter or Rotten Tomatoes, or a newspaper or magazine, because they, like us, have no personal stake in the film’s success.  Contrast that to the trust factor we have for someone associated with the movie, like the star or the director.  Their claims that it’s a “must see” or “5 Stars” are usually greeted with a healthy dose of skepticism. This Movie Critic Principle can be applied to give you an immediate shot of credibility when it matters most:  at the critical start of your presentation or demo. By using a third party to introduce you, you can set audience expectations, create anticipation and boost credibility.  Three things that are much more difficult Read More

The ONE thing you must change in your Web Presentation


web presentation

Bad news: Your attempts to engage your virtual audience by chatting or polling or drawing on the screen won’t make much of a difference UNLESS, you change this one thing in your web presentation or demo. Ready? Here it is: Adjust Your Style What do I mean by this? You  are (hopefully!) adjusting your content to fit each prospect you speak to, but I bet you haven’t put any thought into adjusting the way you deliver that content to fit the medium. Imagine a stage actor who is used to working in the theater in front of a live audience, suddenly cast in a television show. And instead of adjusting to the new medium, he uses the same movements, vocal style, timing and delivery. What would happen?  The actor BOMBS!  The audience is confused or bored, changes the channel and vows never to watch that show again! Remember the film, Read More

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Performance Sales and Training: Persuasive Presentation Skills to meet the challenges of today’s B2B Sales Environment