Category Archives: Acting tips

5 Actor’s Secrets to Master Your Fear of Virtual Presentations


Waiting to be admitted to the Zoom meeting, you feel the nerves begin to set in. With each passing minute, confidence slowly turns to anxiety and tension as you second guess yourself – Do you have the right meeting ID? How well do you really know your material? Did you practice enough? – Now feeling awkward and uncertain, you either race or slog through the video call detached from your audience and your message – completely missing the mark (and the sale).  Virtual presentation nerves claim another victim. Actors are No Strangers to Performance Nerves An actor is no stranger to pre-show nerves! Though unlike the nervous salesperson silently sitting in front of their computer awaiting their doom, the well-trained actor knows that sitting still before a performance spells disaster – natural nervous energy quickly turns to tension when the body has no way to release it. Tension increases anxiety Read More

Virtual First Impression: 5 Secrets from the Stars


Your virtual first impression can make or break your sale. In the first few seconds of a video call, prospective customers quickly make decisions about you and your company and how (or whether) they’re going to listen to you. To ensure you’re making a strong first impression, look no further than your television screen. Most of the stars you see had to audition on film or video to make it past the eyes of critical casting directors and onto your screen. By applying the 5 secrets from the stars, you can gain an important competitive edge in your video calls: 5 Secrets from the Stars for a Memorable First Impression Be prepared: “We started every practice with that warm-up … We knew that sh*t like it was second nature. And that’s when magical stuff happens with acting: No mind, no body.” – Mark Ruffalo | Spotlight No star would ever Read More

Be More Confident On-Camera with These 6 Proven Acting Tips


Confidence is crucial in virtual sales! Why? Because the camera picks up everything – including a lack of confidence. Salespeople must learn to be confident on-camera in order for potential customers to place their trust and business with a credible partner. “Just act confident!” … So much easier said than done! When preparing for a video call or message, you would likely find this common piece of advice entirely unhelpful! Not only does it lack obvious steps or tactics, it’s important you not only appear confident but that you feel confident in front of the camera as well. Ultimately, my training as an actor has taught me more about being confident on-camera than video than any sales training I ever have. These six powerful (and easy!) acting tips are tactical and proven to work in an art form that really knows what it takes to appear and, more importantly, feel Read More

Energize Your Virtual Presentation with This Proven Acting Technique


It’s time to energize your virtual presentation! When presenting on video, salespeople rarely speak with as much personality or energy as they would naturally use in their personal lives – we tend to tone things down, flatten them out, or pull them in when sitting in front of a screen. Now selling from home, it is easier than ever before to get too relaxed and comfortable on video sales call. Trust me – I know that the idea of giving a virtual presentation from the comfort of your favorite recliner is very tempting but getting too comfortable comes across as low energy and disinterest to your customers. You’ve probably heard the saying that the camera adds 10 pounds. Though it’s often forgotten what the camera can take away – energy! Without careful practice and attention, the camera can take away 10-50% of your energy. And your Lazy Boy isn’t helping. Read More

Be a Video Sales Superstar with These 3 Acting Secrets


Video is fast becoming a salesperson’s secret weapon in the battle for attention of today’s busy buyers.  Whether it’s recorded videos for prospecting or a webcam for a remote meeting, using video in sales can help you quickly establish a personal connection, stand out from the competition, and close more deals. (see below)  So what in the world is holding you back from being a Video Sales Superstar?  Research by Gong.io found that closed deals involved webcams being used 41% more often than lost deals. For many salespeople, it’s the discomfort – or downright terror – of being on camera.  I get it.  Speaking to a camera is an unnatural act.  But here’s a secret:  many of those same actors that appear so natural and confident on film had to work to overcome their fear of the camera and master some specific techniques.  And if they can learn how, so can Read More

What My Sex and the City Audition taught me about Sales (and Winning Competitive Deals)


It never occurred to me how much an audition and a sales call had in common, until I auditioned for one of HBO’s first mega-hits, Sex and the City. As a single woman in New York, Sex and the City was required viewing. Your friends, your co-workers, your customers, everyone you knew would be glued to the TV on Sunday night for Carrie Bradshaw & Company’s latest adventures.  Missing an episode left you unable to participate in the week’s discourse on trends like Cosmopolitans and Manolo Blahnik’s – not to mention the show’s often provocative subject matter. Because of Sex and the City’s popularity, getting a chance to audition for the show was akin to winning the Golden Ticket.  So when I saw they were holding an open casting call I put on my best party dress and heels and headed downtown.  Exiting the subway I stopped in my tracks.  Read More

How Toastmasters almost ruined my presentation


Toastmasters

This may offend some Toastmasters out there, but Toastmasters almost ruined my presentation.  And it could ruin yours too.  Now before you send the Grand Toastmaster after me, hear me out. I was a card-carrying member of Toastmasters for over a year and value much of that experience.  I joined prior to launching my first book as I needed a live (and captive) audience to practice new material on.  My fellow Toastmasters and I would give each other our undivided attention and feedback. While the feedback could vary greatly, I looked for consistent themes that resonated with me. Some of that feedback even helped shape a presentation I still use today. So how did Toastmasters almost ruin my presentation? Toastmasters encourages a dramatized style of speaking that Toastmaster and former club president Al Pittampalli calls “unsuitable for most real-world contexts.” (You can read his article, “Toastmasters has a problem it Read More

A “Scary” Sales Tip from Zombie School


The Walking Dead

It’s not easy to become a zombie.  Every year thousands of people audition for a chance to play a zombie on TV’s hit series, The Walking Dead.  Once they make it through the initial casting process they are enrolled in Zombie School (yes, it’s a real thing) where they will learn what it takes to play the undead and make a chance at the final cut. To stand out from the competition, the director at The Walking Dead’s Zombie School gave the wannabe-zombies some important direction:  Avoid doing the same old arms out in front, stereotypical Frankenstein-type zombie. Don’t just copy what everyone else is doing, make something your own.  His final words of advice: “You have to find your inner zombie.” Whether you’re competing for a role in a hit TV show or a role in your prospect’s business, doing the same thing as everyone else is not a Read More

The One Question You Must Ask Yourself Before Your Presentation


Good salespeople ask themselves what they want their prospect to do at the end of their presentation. In other words, what’s the next step to move this sale forward?  That could be a signed contract, a meeting, or a recommendation. But great salespeople ask themselves another powerful question that is instrumental in determining whether that prospect will take the next step or not. And that question is this: How do I want my prospect to feel?  Think about the last time you made a major purchasing decision.  How did you feel before you said “yes?”  Were you excited?  Convinced?  Motivated?  Challenged?  Those are the feelings that are likely to lead to action. So how does your prospect need to feel to take action? Do they need to feel excited?  Then guess what? Your intention needs to be to get them excited!  Likewise, if they need to feel motivated, you need Read More

Video Tip: 4 Audition Secrets for a Memorable First Impression


First Impressions Matter in Sales…and Acting People make several major decisions about another person in the first few seconds.  Decisions like: Is this person trustworthy?  Successful?  Competent?  So how do you make sure your first impression with your prospect or audience is helping you – and not hurting you? Casting directors know a lot about what makes a good first impression.  An actor often has less than 20 seconds in an audition to prove why they are different – or be shown the door.  While a customer may not physically throw you out, they can (and do!) mentally check out or bide their time until you’re done if you fail to make a good first impression. In this Video I share 4 Audition Secrets for Making a Memorable First Impression. Click here to read more about how you can apply all 5 Tips for Making a Great  First Impression in Sales. Read More

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