“In business presentations, positive impressions can help make a sale or win over an audience,” says Ian Lamont. Any marketing or sales professional knows this to be true, but how do we get there? How do we know when we are making the best impressions we can on our audience?
Here are 5 ways to enhance your messaging to boost sales and success with your presentation:
1. Identify your objective
Identifying the objective is the most important step, as it is the foundation for each and every other step in the process of developing your slides. Why are you giving this presentation? What is the end goal? What do you want your audience to get out of it? Whatever your objective is, write it down on a post-it and keep it visible while you develop your presentation.
2. Tell a story
Storytelling is the heart and soul of marketing and advertising. Template and generic pitches don’t captivate the average customer. People want to be seen, to be spoken to directly. Use the basic rules of thumb for writing any story in English class. Starting with the exposition, set the scene for what you will be talking about and give the audience some context. As the rising action, explain the problem or hole in the market. Make it personal and try to draw in emotional connection. After the climax comes the falling action. Explain how your product or service solves the problem presented earlier. How does your business (the protagonist) save the day? Finally, provide some resolution with proof of success with the product or service you’re selling.
3. Be specific!
Like any essay you write in school, it’s important to provide plenty of concrete evidence. Use real-life information to prove why your product/service is the hero in your story. Use data relevant to your market. Call out the percentage of success in the latest study, or the increase of sales in the last year. As Dan Zarrella says, “marketing without data is like driving with your eyes closed”. Photographic evidence is strong as well. Isn’t better to order clothes online that you’ve seen on the model versus the plain product shots? If nothing else, testimonials are a great way to prove that what you’re selling is worth it!
4. Stay relevant
Always, always, always go back and comb through your presentation to cut out anything unnecessary. Take that post-it with your objective written on it and omit anything that doesn’t directly support that intention. Tangents are dangerous when you have a specific goal in mind. They can be confusing, distracting, or even boring to your audience! Keep your content on point to keep your audience engaged!
5. End with a CTA
As part of the resolution of your story, end with a call-to-action for your audience. What are the next steps for them? Is it to schedule a consultation? Sign up for the e-newsletter? Whatever the case, be sure to let your audience know where they can go for further information about your product or service.