Make A Fantastic Presentation
You have two days to prepare a fantastic presentation and you are not ready. You have not gotten your Powerpoint together and you do not have anything prepared.
There is a feeling of dread, disappointment and you know you are certainly going to get fired. You may just need to learn how to handle stress and your schedule.
You could have been better prepared. Now you can be.
We have all been there. The boss walk in to your office and tells you that the company has a major client coming in. You need to prepare a presentation that will build trust, further education the buyer, have them understand what’s in it for them, inspire them to purchase and potentially get some referral in the future.
As a professional business person in sales or not, you need to present to the customer wants and needs. You maybe be required to present one on one, to a few people or to their whole business unit.
Your client could be the buyer or the company’s VP even the CEO. Sometimes it will be multiple buyer or owners of the company at the same time.
No matter who you are presenting to you must prepare. Being prepared is vital to your success and the company’s ability to gain new customers and business partners.
The more you know about the person you are presenting to the better you will do in communicating your message.
There are three steps in preparing a fantastic presentation.
You will need to communicate your message effectively with the time you have. Every professional, in every industry, must learn the techniques to give the most effective presentation, speak with confidence and how to create an effective presentation.
Year after year we hear studies that say public speaking ranks number one on the list of people’s fears. Which is higher than people fear of death.
Two reason this is still true.
One, because this is what we are told ands so many of us just believe it.
Second, most people do not learn how to give a presentation so this fear remains with them. I believe they have not mastered the ability to communicate effectively.
Many of us learn skills in college or university but we do not learn what it takes to develop a success mindset.
Most of time we do not use the skills we learn and forget how to apply them.
Many of us fear public speaking because we do not want to appear unprofessional in front of others. So, we hide in the back and hope we never do a presentation at our job.
When preparing for the presentation do you just get started or do you take a few minutes to understand what you are looking to accomplish?
Ask yourself, what is the goal of your presentation?
What is the expected outcome your management team requires?
What questions will you need to answer in the presentation?
During the presentation, what action, emotion and responses do you want the customer to experience?
You many need to build all this into your presentation.
You already know, the better you prepare, the better your outcome will be. So, do not be the person who procrastinate when it comes to writing the presentation out.
Here is something to consider. You can be over prepared for the presentation. When you are over prepared, you begin to forget about the message you need to deliver.
You can write your presentation out word for word or you can write it out bullet point. You must judge what is best for your speaking style.
When you start putting together the presentation you need to know who will make up your audience. The better you know your audience the better you will choose the words you will say during your talk.
Most likely the presentation will be in your office, at location of the buyer or at a third-party location, such as a coffee shop or conference room. If you can, do your best to have the presentation take place where you can control the environment.
Once you know our audience and the place you will be presentation, start to gather the necessary information that the client will need to know. Organize your ideas so that they flow logically.
A presentation is like a play or movie. You control the flow and the information you want the customer to know.
If you are going to be using a slide show make sure you have an IT person available to help you with the technology regardless of how well you know computers.
Your goal is to sell, not fix computers, if something were to happen during your presentation.
Know the Outcome
As you are aware not everything is going to go the way you planned. The customer you will be presenting to may not be able to make it in. Maybe you will need to set up a web conference.
The more you prepare, the more familiar and comfortable you will be with the material. If you practice, the better change you look and feel confident in front of the buyer.
You can learn sales principle by reading, how to be the great sales person.
Do you know what outcome you want to achieve?
I believe your outcome should cause the buyer to want to do business with you. It should answer any unanswered questions that have held them back on making the final purchasing decision.
The key reason is to prepare your talk so it covers all your customer’s goals and objectives.
Tell the audience your goal.
Answer each question ins a way which brings you positive results.
How Do You Know the Goal?
You may consider working with a team on your presentation or working closely with the manager of the project to understand what they are hoping to accomplish, before you prepare to make your fantastic presentation.
Consider the long-term objective not the short-term.
You work for your company and hopefully you believe in everything they do. You must believe in the products and services? If you do, your tone, body language and presentation will convey your message.
One of your goals is to have them believe that your product or service is better than any product or service a competitor can offer them.
Should You Use Multi-Media?
This is something that you will have to decide based your style and audience. Look at the length of your presentation and understand how your audience will react.
Know that some people learn through auditory senses and other through visual. While a percentage of the audience like a combination.
You should consider the size of the room and decide if you need a microphone or will your voice carry you message to the people in the back.
This is one reason to know the size of your audience. This is also what separates the employees from the leaders.
If you or someone else at the company has presented previously, go and talk to that person. Find out if there was anything they would change in previous presentations, what the audience was like, what type of questions did they ask and how could your presentation be more effective.
Gathering Material for The Presentation
With so much information that can be convey to the listener, again it is important to know the goal. Based on that goal prepare the information you need.
Look at what information you may have access to, through company resources.
It is important to understand your competition as well.
Present the value your product or service provides to the customers’ business, not yours.
Education the buyer on how your product is better without talking negative about your competitor or their products.
Once you have the information for your presentation, make sure you can fit all the important information in the giving time.
Note that after 20-25 minutes a listener’s mind start to wonder. So, understand you’re your presentation will deal with this factor.
The goal of your talk is to inform, educate, inspire, cause a change in the mind of the buyer and cause them to act on your presentations message.
You may be aware that a good speech as three parts. The introduction, the body and the conclusion.
Many people find that it helps to prepare the body of your speech first.
When you know exactly what the focus of the presentation is, you can build a strong opening and closing to your speech.
The body of the presentation is what you want your listener to remember and act upon. The information here should all be relevant.
Depending on your audience and the complexity of the product try to develop no more than three or four ideas in your presentation
Each point you make in the presentation should be supported by the product or service, quotes or testimonials, examples and/or statistics.
The most effective speakers enhance their ideas and build credibility by using a variety of supporting materials.
Something you can do is consider is using handing out material. If it is a small group I would but if you’re talking to a larger group I would wait till the end.
The hand out can lead to interruptions in your presentation, which will only affect your potential to do a great job.
Testimonial can be effective if you use them correctly. We all want to know we are not the first to use the product or service. The client wants to make sure their decision lines up with other people’s buying decisions.
The opening of your presentation is key. You want to capture the attention of your audience and give them a compelling reason to listen to you.
The more you know about your audience the better the opening statement will be at grabbing their attention and keeping them engaged.
With so many ways to begin a presentation one of the most effective can be to use a quote. If you are selling to small group, using a quote from a past buyer, with permission of course, can give the buyer a reason to listen more intently.
In a larger group this can also work. I have found it is best to use a quote from someone who everyone can resonate with.
You can start the speech by asking a question to the audience.
Do not ask anyone to answer the question.
It should be for each person to consider. The question can be part of the goal you’re hoping to achieve at the end of the presentation.
After the conclusion of your fantastic presentation, leave time to answer questions the client has.
If you feel a joke can act as a good ice breaker, then tell one. Just be aware some people may not find your joke funny or can even find it offensive. This is why you need to know your audience.
Now that you have their attention. Your second step is to tell the goal of your presentation. The focus or the reason they are there to listen to you speak. Every sentence you speak should be positive and build rapport with the decision maker.
No this does not mean you need to kiss anyone backside. You should be effective in your approach.
You can use the techniques in Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People.
Whatever you want your listening audience to experience tell them at the beginning. The better they understand how you will solve their problem the better chance you have at a successful presentation and gaining new business.
Depending on the length of your presentation your audience may not remember the beginning of your speech. They may not even remember some of the points you stressed. What they will remember is how you made them feel.
The Closing of The Presentation
You will need to have a strong closing that that evokes a positive emotion.
A weak ending to a fantastic presentation may cause the listener to wonder why they wasted their time.
What if you tell your listener that the ending of the presentation is near?
This can be an effective step as the listener will listen closely to what you are saying as they understand the end is near. This is a good time to repeat what you want them to focus their attention on.
It is time to take advantage and focus on the main goal of your speech. Leave them with a lasting and memorable statement that causes them to act.
Bringing It Altogether
You have presented your information and are getting to the end. Make sure you summarize the top three or four points you wanted them to understand.
This could be the last time you speak to this potential buyer. Without offending anyone do what you think is necessary to make the presentation memorable.
If the audience found the starting of your presentation effective, then you can use same technique from the beginning of the meeting, at the conclusion of your speech.
Depending on the audience you present to, issuing a challenge can be a good idea. But before you do this, read the body language of the buyer and see if they are open or closed to this idea.
The goal of your presentation is to convey the message, stir up emotion and have the buyer decide. They are there meeting with you. Take advantage of the moment.
You may need to learn how to overcome price objections if that comes up. You may need to learn how to handle someone who becomes any or combative.
No matter what, you need to be prepared. The best way to do this is get over your fear of public speaking, and get up in front of more people.
What part of this article did you enjoy and how will you use this information to prepare your next presentation?
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