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The Art of Persuasion: Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch

Influence should be your main concern when it comes to speaking before an audience–may it be consumers, employees, teammates, or potential investors. Your goal is to make an impact big enough to either change your audience’s opinion or strengthen an already existing point of view.

The point of an effective sales pitch is to persuade your audience into buying or to think about your presentation, may it be a product, service, or concept. To do so, you must appeal to the listeners and convince then that what you’re offering is the most favorable choice.

The content and design of your custom PowerPoint should work together to convince your audience.

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The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) was incredibly influential, especially that he made significant and lasting contributions to various aspects of human knowledge. One of his concepts included the modes of persuasion, which, according to him, can be furnished by the spoken word. These are as follows:

Ethos (Credibility)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Ethos (Credibility)

When delivering a presentation, you must assert your credibility and intelligence as a speaker. Your tone, pitch, and diction help establish this–you have to look and feel confident. Stage presence is also necessary in gaining the audience’s trust.

How do these factors translate to your PowerPoint presentation?

Include your credentials in a self-introduction slide.

Let your audience know who you are and what you specialize in, as these give your listeners a sneak peek into your expertise. If you have achievements that would help build your credibility as a speaker in the field, the better.

Leverage your credibility by quoting other industry experts.

Quoting industry experts add value to your presentation. It shows how familiar you are with the topic, boosting your credibility.

Pathos (Emotion)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Pathos (Emotion)

The emotional content of your presentation makes it more memorable. That said, you become a better speaker when you have the ability to work with your audience’s emotions just as you handle your own.

How will you add an emotional factor to your slides?

Tell a story.

Stories can get in touch with your audience on a personal level, hence making it an effective presentation technique. The more people can relate to it, the better they understand what the pitch is all about.

Rehearse your pitch in front of other people and have them give you feedback. Remember that storytelling can either make or break your presentation so you have to make sure that the story you’re sharing is appropriate for your audience.

Evoke emotions through visuals.

Colors have the power to change or reinforce your audience’s mood in a matter of seconds. Apart from the design itself, companies that build presentation decks put the palette they use into careful consideration.

Logos (Logic)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Logos (Logic)

Aristotle emphasized the appeal to logic and reasoning the most. Once you’ve captured your audience’s attention, the next step is to take action. Convince them that the change or action is within reason and in their best interest.

Survey results, market data, trends–the last mode of persuasion is the most common and the easiest to incorporate into a presentation.

How can you incorporate logic and reasoning into your custom PowerPoint presentation design?

Use backup in the form of case studies and testimonials.

When you include these into your presentation, it shows the effects of the practices, ideas, products, or services, in action.

Use common concepts as analogies and make comparisons.

Explaining complex concepts may not be an easy feat, but if you make the right analogies and comparison, those who may not know much about the subject can easily understand the topic.

While these strategies may seem obvious to many people, there are still those who are miss out on the advantages that these pointers give to the presentation itself, making them bland and unconvincing.

Hopefully, you apply these to your next sales pitch. Not only will you improve your credibility, but these will increase your confidence, too.

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Aristotle and the Art of Persuasion: Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch

Influence should be your main concern when it comes to speaking before an audience–may it be consumers, employees, teammates, or potential investors. Your goal is to make an impact big enough to either change your audience’s opinion or strengthen an already existing point of view.

The point of an effective sales pitch is to persuade your audience into buying or to think about your presentation, may it be a product, service, or concept. To do so, you must appeal to the listeners and convince then that what you’re offering is the most favorable choice.

The content and design of your custom PowerPoint should work together to convince your audience.

SlideGenius Blog Module One

We redesign PowerPoint presentations.

Get your free quote now.

get a free quote

The Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) was incredibly influential, especially that he made significant and lasting contributions to various aspects of human knowledge. One of his concepts included the modes of persuasion, which, according to him, can be furnished by the spoken word. These are as follows:

Ethos (Credibility)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Ethos (Credibility)

When delivering a presentation, you must assert your credibility and intelligence as a speaker. Your tone, pitch, and diction help establish this–you have to look and feel confident. Stage presence is also necessary in gaining the audience’s trust.

How do these factors translate to your PowerPoint presentation?

Include your credentials in a self-introduction slide.

Let your audience know who you are and what you specialize in, as these give your listeners a sneak peek into your expertise. If you have achievements that would help build your credibility as a speaker in the field, the better.

Leverage your credibility by quoting other industry experts.

Quoting industry experts add value to your presentation. It shows how familiar you are with the topic, boosting your credibility.

Pathos (Emotion)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Pathos (Emotion)

The emotional content of your presentation makes it more memorable. That said, you become a better speaker when you have the ability to work with your audience’s emotions just as you handle your own.

How will you add an emotional factor to your slides?

Tell a story.

Stories can get in touch with your audience on a personal level, hence making it an effective presentation technique. The more people can relate to it, the better they understand what the pitch is all about.

Rehearse your pitch in front of other people and have them give you feedback. Remember that storytelling can either make or break your presentation so you have to make sure that the story you’re sharing is appropriate for your audience.

Evoke emotions through visuals.

Colors have the power to change or reinforce your audience’s mood in a matter of seconds. Apart from the design itself, companies that build presentation decks put the palette they use into careful consideration.

Logos (Logic)

Delivering a Persuasive Sales Pitch: Logos (Logic)

Aristotle emphasized the appeal to logic and reasoning the most. Once you’ve captured your audience’s attention, the next step is to take action. Convince them that the change or action is within reason and in their best interest.

Survey results, market data, trends–the last mode of persuasion is the most common and the easiest to incorporate into a presentation.

How can you incorporate logic and reasoning into your custom PowerPoint presentation design?

Use backup in the form of case studies and testimonials.

When you include these into your presentation, it shows the effects of the practices, ideas, products, or services, in action.

Use common concepts as analogies and make comparisons.

Explaining complex concepts may not be an easy feat, but if you make the right analogies and comparison, those who may not know much about the subject can easily understand the topic.

While these strategies may seem obvious to many people, there are still those who are miss out on the advantages that these pointers give to the presentation itself, making them bland and unconvincing.

Hopefully, you apply these to your next sales pitch. Not only will you improve your credibility, but these will increase your confidence, too.

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References:

Brooks, Chad. “Get Emotional: 5 Ways to Give Better Presentations.” Business News Daily. September 12, 2014. https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/7117-give-better-presentations.html

Zetlin, Minda. “5 Presentation Tips: How to be a Stronger Storyteller.” The Enterprisers Project. February 6, 2018. https://enterprisersproject.com/article/2018/2/5-presentation-tips-how-be-stronger-storyteller

History.com Staff. “Aristotle.” A+E Networks. 2009. http://www.history.com/topics/ancient-history/aristotle

Making Your Presentation Stand Out with Powerful Design

Once you’re onstage, the stars are you and your presentation. Of course, your training got you there in the first place: charisma, clear and loud voice, likable aura—public speaking skills polished over and over again until they’re perfect, almost like second nature, and suited to your needs—and appropriate for every crowd imaginable.

But what about your presentation? Is it tailored to your audience? There’s a risk you don’t want to take when, despite how good you are as a speaker, your presentation is not as appealing: you don’t get your message across as effectively as you want, vis-à-vis death by PowerPoint.

Since humans are visual creatures, our brains process imagistic information faster and more efficiently than text. This is a benchmark you should take advantage of when creating visually appealing and enticing slides, a tip awesome presentation designers always live by. Check this infographic for tips on how to charm your audiences, arrest their attention, and, most importantly, get your message across.

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Visuals play an important role when arresting attention. In a world of eight-second attention spans and faster everything—connectivity, accessibility, and even loading times—people would rather spend more of their time on different, more valuable things.

Come to think of it, it’s a cyclical cause and effect: everything is faster, so people expect things to be even faster, ergo the short attention spans. Kind of a messed-up Pygmalion effect, only for things instead of persons.

With that happening, there’s now two steps to do: get their attention and retain it. Good, proper, and creative use of visuals can already do the first, and they can certainly take care of the second, especially when your topic goes from “something that makes them curious” to “something that genuinely piques their interest and makes them ask questions.”

There’s a beauty that certain senses can solely appreciate. Music to the ears. Caress on the skin. For the eyes, it’s appealing design. Beauty. Make something that both you and your audience will appreciate. In turn, they will appreciate you.

 

Resources:

Golden, Felicia. “The Power of Visual Content: Images vs. Text.” eyeQ. February 11, 2015. www.eyeqinsights.com/power-visual-content-images-vs-text

McSpadden, Kevin. “You Now Have a Shorter Attention Span than a Goldfish.” Time. May 14, 2015. www.time.com/3858309/attention-spans-goldfish

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Visual Thinking: Do Images Fill Your Brain?

Do you have a hard time memorizing people’s names, but can easily place the face of a stranger? Is it hard to articulate your ideas and turn them into words? Do you prefer sketching out the details of a project? Do you love solving puzzles like this one? Those who are more inclined to visual thinking will likely answer yes to all these questions.

What is visual thinking?

Learn more about the unique ability to see the world in pictures and the skills it involves by watching these two videos:

Are You A Visual Thinker? by BuzzFeed Video

Visual Thinking 101 by Sean Griffin

Developing visual thinking skills

As we often discuss here, our brains are more inclined to process and retain visual information. This is why visualization is an important element in presentations. Complex concepts are better explained through the use of illustrations, charts, diagrams and pictures. Verbal or textual explanations can easily become confusing. People who are more inclined to visual thinking will know this for a fact.

While not everyone might be considered visual thinkers, others can easily develop the same set of skills. With a bit of practice, we can all achieve visual literacy. As Philip Yenawine of Visual Understanding Education writes,

It involves a set of skills ranging from simple identification (naming what one sees) to complex interpretation on contextual, metaphoric and philosophical levels. Many aspects of cognition are called upon, such as personal association, questioning, speculating, analyzing, fact-finding, and categorizing. Objective understanding is the premise of much of this literacy, but subjective and affective aspects of knowing are equally important.

Here are a few resources you can read to get started on your visual thinking journey:

 

Featured Image: Fons Heijnsbroek via Flickr

Design Crash Course: Color and Typography

Design is a crucial part of all presentations. With visuals that stand out, you can leave a more memorable impression on your audience. People respond to visual stimuli a lot more, and great design can help your audience process and retain information. Aside from integrating pictures and illustrations into your slides, you can also experiment with color and typography.

DesignMantic came out with 2 infographics that can serve as a design crash course for those looking to improve their PowerPoint decks. In it, they outline some useful tips to guide your color and font choices.

Design Crash Course 1: The 10 Commandments of Color Theory

This infographic breaks down everything you need to know about color theory. Aside from helping you choose colors that match the mood of your presentation, it also offers tips and tricks on how to come up with a solid palette.

Courtesy of Designmantic.com; click on image for full view

Design Crash Course 2: The 10 Commandments of Typography

Typography turns the written word into a visual treat. For this infographic, DesignMantic breaks down everything you need to know about combining different fonts together. As you know, choosing the correct font type is crucial in PowerPoint design. Like color, it can contribute in setting the over-all mood of your presentation.

Courtesy of Designmantic.com; click on image for full view

Get more design tips and PowerPoint ideas by reading back on some of our previous blog posts. To create the best slides for your presentations, always keep your core message in mind. Allow the purpose of your presentation to guide the choices you make when it comes to color and font type. Your designs should elevate the core message of your presentation. It should to highlight the goals you want to achieve, instead of distracting the audience. In other words, presentation design is both aesthetic and functional.

If you need more help, don’t hesitate to contact us and consult with our PowerPoint design experts.

 

Featured Image: Cropped from DesignMantic infographic

How to Tell a Better Presentation Story

As we already know, stories make for powerful presentations. Great stories can capture the emotion and imagination of an audience. Instead of a straightforward report of the facts, stories allow audiences to connect with a message. Stories allow mundane and impersonal data seem more relatable. A presentation story creates a more personal and engaging audience experience.

Whether you’re in the boardroom or in a meeting with potential clients, here’s a list of what you’ll need to tell the best presentation story:

The heart of the story

In literature, stories are told to reveal broader themes. While you’re not expected to philosophize abstract themes in your presentation, the story you share should also have a purpose. At its core, it should be more than just a story. Your story should be driven by a rationale that is essential to your story. In other words, it should perfectly illustrate the core of your message.

To get there, consider asking  yourself these key questions:

  • What is the significance of this particular story?
  • What is the underlying principle behind your presentation?
  • What is the main point you’re trying to get across?

The more you understand the key takeaway, the better you can deliver your presentation story.

The main players

Stories can’t move forward without a central character. The character is responsible for setting the narrative into motion. It is also the character that determines what kind of story will unfold. Most importantly, it’s with the character that the audience connects with emotionally.

It may seem odd to name a protagonist for your presentation story, but even the most mundane stories have its main players. It could be your customer. It could be someone who perfectly represents the demographic you’re targeting. You could even be the character of your own presentation story, especially if you want to talk about an experience that’s central to your key takeaway.

The structure

Beginning, middle, end. Whether it’s an epic hero’s journey, or a murder mystery riddled with flashbacks, all stories are anchored by this basic structure. As such, the same should be true for your presentation story.

According to Fast.co‘s Aaron Ordendorff, the problem is that we often start our presentations at the very middle of the story. We don’t take the time to develop the narrative and provide proper context. At the same time, there is also very little discussion of the resolution and what should come next.

To structure your presentation story properly, start with the basics:

  • Beginning – While you’re not expected to give every detail of your presentation, you do need to provide the audience with sufficient context to understand your message. Begin your presentation story be introducing your character and the problem they’re facing.
  • Middle – Once you’ve provided enough background information, you can begin to detail the purpose of your presentation and how that relates to the conflict your character is facing.
  • End – After discussing the bulk of what makes your presentation, end the story by providing a resolution that reinforces your key message

Reference

Orendorff, Aaron. “Bring Your Presentations To Life With These 5 Storytelling Components.” Fast Company. September 15, 2014. Accessed October 14, 2014.

 

Featured Image: Death to the Stock Photo

Helpful Infographics for Your Online Marketing Plan

Anytime you browse through different social media channels, you probably always come across graphics that detail facts you probably never knew before. These images usually have cute and eye-catching drawings or designs. As we mentioned in the past, infographics are a growing trend. They offer an element of fun while conveying key facts and data. A good infographic can condense useful stats and information without overwhelming viewers.

To illustrate how effective they really are, we looked around the Internet to find some infographics that can help your online marketing strategy. Here are 5 that we think are particularly well-designed and informative:

How to Sell Without Selling

This infographic by Stride shares details and statistics you’ll need to improve your online marketing strategy. As its title suggests, it offers useful information on how to connect with consumers that are looking to be engaged, rather than to hear sales talk.

by Stride via Daily Infographic
20 Captivating Marketing Statistics

Here’s another set of enlightening data for entrepreneurs. These statistics were gathered by WebDAM.

WebDAM via BufferApp
A Well-Balanced Blog 

In this infographic, LinkedIn breaks down the different components you need for a successful blog.

LinkedIn Marketing Solutions via HubSpot
Email Cheatsheet

Email marketing is one of the best ways to engage with your target audience. As Marketo points out in this infographic, a majority of consumers prefer receiving marketing communications through their inbox. Don’t waste a good opportunity by keeping in mind some useful tips they offer.

Marketo via BufferApp
It’s All About the Images 

We all know how powerful visuals can be. In fact, an image can make a huge difference in how your content is perceived and received by consumers. In this infographic, MDG Advertising offers great advice on how you can get the most mileage from your image-based content.

MDG Advertising via JeffBullas.com
The Ridiculously Exhaustive Social Media Design Blueprint 

And since images are important to online marketing, Tent Social created a cheat sheet to tell you the perfect dimensions to use when sharing pictures in different social media platform:

Tent Social via BufferApp

PowerPoint Karaoke: Have Fun and Improve Your Presentation Skills

I’m sure you’ve tried karaoke to wind down with colleagues after a long day of work. But have you ever thought to give PowerPoint Karaoke a try?

In PowerPoint Karaoke, participants are challenged to take the stage and deliver a presentation based on slides they’ve never seen before. The rules are pretty simple. Instead of singing power ballads, participants will need to make sense of random slides, and connect it to an assigned theme. They will also be restricted by a time limit. The results are usually pretty crazy and absurd. To give you a clue, here are some slides from a PowerPoint Karaoke event held in Seattle last 2012:

 

As you can probably imagine, PowerPoint Karaoke can lead to some pretty hilarious situations. The best speakers are those who are willing to step out of their comfort zone, ready to have fun while practicing their improvisation skills. It’s the perfect game for anyone looking to deliver better and more engaging presentations.

Getting started:

If you’re ready to throw your own PowerPoint Karaoke party, here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Build your PowerPoint decks beforehand. Be creative and go for slides that will challenge the participants. If you want, you can find presentations online and edit them for your use. Five to seven slides per deck will do.
  • At the event, let the participants draw for their speaking order and assigned theme. This will give everyone an even playing field, and prevent people settling for topics they’re familiar with.
  • You can decide whether you want speakers to control their own deck, or have the slides auto advance.
  • Set a time limit that’s no more than 5 minutes.
  • Decide on a winner by letting the audience vote. You can prepare forms, or just ask them to choose their favorites by show of hands.
PowerPoint Karaoke is a great activity to try with your colleagues. Gather a small group in a room and start having fun. Urge everyone to test their improvisation abilities and improve their presentation skills.

 

Featured Image: Simon Law via Flickr

PowerPoint Inspiration: Sample Slides That Will Blow You Away 

You have a big presentation coming up and, as it always is, the stakes are unbelievably high. You’ve prepared your content and talking points. It’s time to build an amazing and memorable PowerPoint deck. You’ve read all the tips and tricks you can find. You know that you want your deck to be a far cry from the usual ones you see in business meetings. You open PowerPoint and a blank slide stares back at you. After a few minutes, you realize you’re stuck. All the ideas you formed earlier seems cliche and boring now.

So how do you solve this PowerPoint design block? Kendra Haines of Web Designer Depot compiled a bunch of PowerPoint slides that could be useful for inspiration. We narrowed down her list to 5 PowerPoint inspiration sources for your big business presentation:

1.) Designing the Business Experience – Matthew Smith 
(Click image to view PowerPoint presentation)

This PowerPoint makes use of bold images and minimal text to get the point across. It strategically makes use of color. Some slides pop out with a bright dominant green, while others are more subdued with a simple black and white palette.

2.) For a Future-Friendly Web – Brad Frost 

This PowerPoint deck is the best example for how you can turn any discussion into a visual experience. It makes use of original illustrations, high-quality images, and screencaps for a more engaging presentation.

3.) Data, Design, Meaning – Idan Gazit 

Speaking of visuals, the designer of this PowerPoint deck offers up some advice on how you can visualize data. It’s easier to digest information if it comes in charts that people can easily decipher.

4.) It’s Worth the Effort – Ian Collins 

This is a visually-stunning presentation that can inspire anyone suffering from creative block. Take note of how it allows the pictures to tell  a story. The filtered look to the photos also add to the emotions the presentation is trying to convey.

5.) Customer Satisfaction by the Numbers – Zendesk

PowerPoint Inspiration 5 - Zendesk Customer Satisfaction

This PowerPoint report outlines Zendesk’s global customer satisfaction scores, as well as some ideas on how to improve the customer service experience. It’s data-heavy but visually engaging slides can be a great source of inspiration for a high-stake business presentation.

 

You can also try to look for PowerPoint inspiration by checking out our portfolio. Better yet, how about stepping away from your computer for a while. Take a walk around your neighborhood and you might come across something that interests you. Take a camera with you and take pictures. You might be able to use some of them in your PowerPoint deck when you return.

 

Featured Image: Tsahi Levent-Levi via Flickr

3 Quick Ways to Turn Information into Visuals

As we know, it’s easier for our brains to process visual information. As Dr. John Medina writes on his website, “vision trumps all other senses.”

Within seconds of exposure, pictures beat sentences and words for recall. And in memory tests where people are shown hundreds of photos, they can remember 90% three days later – and 63% after a year.

So if you want to make your presentations memorable, you need to learn how to turn all your data and information into visuals that your audience can easily digest and understand. We’re living in the multimedia age. Today, there’s much more emphasis on images and graphics than there is on the written word. According to MarketingProfs, these are 3 quick methods that you can try to make your information more memorable:

Videos

What can be more engaging than watching something play out before your very eyes? Showcase product demos or customer testimonials through short video clips. You can even try your own hand with a short informative skit through animation. Get started by making use of free tools like Masher, Animoto, and Adobe Voice. If you’d rather just share a video you found through YouTube, you can check this tutorial to learn how you can add one directly to your PowerPoint slides.

Infographics

Another great way to visualize information is through the use of infographics. As we mentioned in the past, they’re an effective way to condense data in a way that’s easy to understand. Infographics are a fun combination of quirky illustrations and hard-hitting facts. To make one yourself, keep these pointers in mind and explore online tools like Visme and Piktochart. With a bit of creativity and customization, you can also make use of PowerPoint SmartArt.

Heat Maps

You’ve probably seen heat maps used in the weather report, where color intensity is used to pinpoint the temperature all over the country. For a presentation, you can also make use of a heat map to visualize data about your website. If, for example, you’re presenting about your online marketing methods, you can make use of Crazy Egg and Clicktale to make your own heat map. These sites will pull information from your websites and pages to show which areas have the most activity.

What other methods do you use to turn the information you have into eye-catching and interesting visuals? Share your thoughts through our social media channels linked below.

 

READ MORE: Three Ways to Visually Present Information (Without Spending a Fortune) – MarketingProfs

Featured Image: Armando Maynez via Flickr