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Giving Presentations That Consistently Sell

By Tessa Stowe

Have you ever given a sales presentation and your prospect said thanks but no thanks? They didn't seem all that interested or even if they were interested, they didn't want to buy from you? Think of all the time, money and resources (TMR) you have wasted on these sales presentations that go nowhere. Here are five tips that will help you avoid this ever happening to you again. These tips will also help you give sales presentations that consistently sell.

Tip #1: Only give a sales presentation after you understand your prospect's specific problem and motivation: Before you can give a presentation and say you can solve your prospect's problem, you need to understand their specific problem. Yes? Seems obvious and logical I know but 'prescribing before diagnosing' is one of the top 10 common sales mistakes.

Therefore before you present your solution, ask lots of questions and dive deep into the answers so you can understand their problem. Find out what their problem is costing them. Also find out what specific benefits they would get if they solved their problem.

Tip # 2: Only give a sales presentation after you have asked the "magic question": The "magic question" will make the need for many presentations and proposals disappear. That's why it's magic. With this question you simply ask "Just suppose, that I give you a presentation on our products and services, and you see they're a perfect fit for you, what would happen next?" The answer to this question will often indicate you need to do a lot more work before a presentation or proposal is the next best step.

Tip # 3: Give highly relevant sales presentations: The more relevant your presentation is to your prospect, the greater will be their interest. Conversely the less relevant it is to them, the less will be their interest. There is a direct correlation.

If you give a standard - one size fits all presentation - on the faint hope that something you say will be relevant and hit a hot button, chances are your prospect won't be listening - or they'll be asleep by the time you do get to that hot button. If you are giving a standard presentation, you are leaving it up to your prospect to work out what is relevant and most prospects simply can't be bothered. If you give a standard presentation, the relevance will be low and their interest will be low.

To give highly relevant presentations, only present those aspects of your products and services that are relevant to their specific problem. Ditch the rest. Your prospect doesn't care about the rest. You also want your presentation to be highly relevant in language. Speak to your prospect in the language of their role - not in your language. I call this "Speaking to their ears."

Tip # 4: Give sales presentations that motivate prospects to buy: With tip #1, I said to only give presentation once you understand your prospect's motivation for solving their problem. During your presentation, you then simply reflect back all the motivation your prospect has told you during the questioning process. You reflect back what they've told you about what the problem is costing them. You reflect back what they told you would be the benefits if they solved their problem. Your prospect will agree with everything you're saying as they are the ones that gave you the information. Assuming it makes sense (financial or otherwise) - and you should not be giving a presentation unless it does - your prospect will be very motivated to buy.

Tip #5: Only give sales presentations to people who are going to buy: This tip may seem obvious but selling to prospects that aren't going to buy is another one of the top 10 common sales mistakes. It's a complete waste of your TMR giving presentations to prospects that aren't going to buy so make sure you put your prospect through your filtering, or qualification process, before you give your presentation. You do have a filtering or qualification process, don't you?

To implement what I've covered above, I suggest you do two things. First look back at some recent presentations (or proposals) you have given that went nowhere. Now look at these tips and see what you could have done differently to have avoided this situation. Your past "failures" are very valuable learning experiences - and you've paid for them with your TMR - so learn from them. Secondly I suggest you look at some current prospects you are talking to and see which tips you need to apply before you give a presentation.

Apply these five tips and watch how your sales presentations will consistently sell.

Read other articles and learn more about Tessa Stowe.

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