According to ad veteran, Luke Sullivan, presenters and radio ad writers both come up with ways to get customers to listen and buy what they advertise.
While presenters have the advantage of more time (ten to twenty minutes of presentation time vs. a thirty-second radio ad) and a PowerPoint deck to provide visuals, the majority of the pitch depends on how the presenter talks.
Voice tones, hand gestures, and even body language contribute to how effectively you deliver your sales presentation.
Brand communications expert, Carmine Gallo, suggests that you can either give a listless presentation with notecards, or you can study your product long enough to come up with an interesting idea that sells itself.
Because both radio ad writers and presenters share a common problem, there are solutions that are applicable to both parties:
1. Use Words to Paint Images
Telling a story is one effective way to make a compelling presentation, but using words to describe a picture can effectively engage your audience, letting them visualize what you have in mind.
Your sales PowerPoint is there to provide a visual image for your audience when you give your speech.
This becomes even more effective when the deck applies the right design methods to enhance your core message.
2. Use Speech Ideas You Can Describe in a Sentence
Simplifying your topic gives your clients a clearer picture of what you have to offer.
The same thing applies when you craft your presentation speech. The first question you need to ask is: “What is my pitch all about?”
Once you answer this, start writing your script and practice it.
Whether you want to present a car that gets you to where you want to go, or an impressive quarterly sales result for your brand, boil down your topic into one simple idea.
You’ll have more freedom to write your script.
3. Use the Right Tone for Your Pitch
While using a conversational tone works for most professional presentations, there are times where you need to bring your passion into your pitch, particularly when building hype for a new product or celebrating a new sales record and making new recommendations.
The key is to know your client’s expectations.
Once you do, stay relevant to those expectations in order to connect with your clients.
You may want to use humor in your speech, but that won’t work if the client expects you to be serious and professional.
4. You Can Be Funny, But You Need to Be Interesting
While some presenters like to poke fun during their presentations, remember to be professional and take your clients seriously so you can sell.
If the situation calls for you to poke fun at your product, then it’s fine. Sullivan reiterates that every presenter needs to be “interesting”.
Being interesting means having an idea.
Fortunately, as renowned author Jim Aitchison suggests, every product has a story to tell.
Maybe it has something that no other competitor has, or the way it was made puts it above others, or maybe it has benefits that no other product has.
Whatever your speech idea, always go back to what you want to talk about. Chances are, there’s an interesting story to tell your clients.
That story might be your ticket to selling your pitch.
One More Thing: Every Story Needs Another Pair of Eyes
As with every story, getting someone to look it over gives you room for improvement, increasing your chances of selling.
Just as radio ad writers need editors, every presenter needs the help of a professional presentation specialist to give them that selling advantage.
Aitchison, J. (2004). Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore ; New York: Prentice Hall.
Gallo, C. (2010). The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience. New York: McGraw-Hill.
“Sales Presentation Skills: Stay Relevant to Pitch Ideas.” SlideGenius, Inc. May 11, 2015. Accessed June 9, 2015.
Sullivan, L. (2008). Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This! A Guide to Creating Great Ads. Hoboken, NJ – J. Wiley & Sons.
“Why Conversational Tones Work for Corporate Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed June 9, 2015.
Featured Image: “Radio ZRK Eroica cropped background” by Tomek Goździewicz on Wikimedia Commons