Slidegenius, Inc.

Increase Your Chances of Making Sales in 5 Easy Steps

Motivating your prospects isn’t enough to convince them to make purchase decisions. It would be difficult to motivate people without knowing their preferences. Learning what motivates them in buying a product or availing a service should be your main priority. This is to give you higher chances of influencing them to take action.

Convincing them to purchase your product allows you to highlight the benefits of what you’re offering. Knowing their needs, on the other hand, gives you an idea on what kind of things they’re interested in and how to satisfy them.

Before you even get to know your prospects, they already have their own set of preferences and expectations that drive them to act. Be careful not to sound too aggressive or desperate in presenting your offerings without first knowing what affects their decisions. This is where asking questions takes place.

Give your prospects enough time to share important things about themselves. This will help you discover something valuable that you can use in addressing their concerns. Otherwise, you’ll unintentionally lose their attention and interest.

In his book, The Secret of Selling Anything, author and speaker Harry Browne tackles how selling is easy. He mentions that the secret to salesmanship revolves around this guideline: Find this prospect’s motivation and appeal to it.

Browne emphasizes the importance of recognizing each prospect’s motivation to increase your chances of making sales. Follow these five easy steps inspired by Browne’s ideas as your guide:

Step 1. Identify their motivation.

Making Sales: Motivation

According to Browne, asking questions that stimulate your prospect’s interest are effective in convincing them to open up and disclose whatever it is that matters to them a lot. Though selling is your main goal, understand that you need to prioritize client concerns and distinguish their inner motives before your own satisfaction. This is where you ensure that the prospect you are talking to is qualified for your offer.

Knowing their motivations also allows you to recognize their present needs. Harold Maslow’s motivational theory explains how each stage of human need (physiological, safety, love and belonging, esteem, and self-actualization) helps presenters determine their existing concerns before selling. This is why asking them persuasive questions prompts them to talk about their personal experiences. This, in turn, gives you an idea on how to relate those motivations to your presentation.

This also involves identifying possible factors that influence their buying decisions. How you appear credible, beneficial, and unique plays an important role in your business success. Once they find you trustworthy, they’ll warm up to you and express their interest in your offer.

Don’t pursue your personal agenda without letting them do the talking first. Take time to listen to prospects so you can easily craft questions that offer solutions to their problems.

Step 2. Reiterate the main points.

Making Sales: Presentation main points

Once you’re done discovering what triggers their motivations, gather the information and organize them accordingly. Whether you’re conversing with a prospect who unexpectedly asks for your advice, or you’re pitching to a business person, condensing their thoughts in one sentence or two will help you determine their main interest.

In this phase, Browne has mentioned the importance of deeply understanding what your prospects are up to. Reiterating their ideas lets you see if they’ll agree or not. This also lets them know you were listening while they were talking. If you notice some disagreement on their end, clarify things by going back to step one – identify what motivations through substantive questions.

This will serve as your guide in meeting their expectations for a particular product or service. Don’t hesitate to provide follow-up questions that will enable you to comprehend the intended message. It would be better to complete the first two steps before going over the third one.

Step 3. Introduce your offer.

Making Sales: Making an offer

Before you even start communicating with your prospects, they already have a question in mind: “What’s in it for me?” Addressing this will make your pitch more appealing and give you their undivided attention. More importantly, you’ll be able to successfully answer this question once you identify what their current needs are and understand their problems.

At this point in time, you’re ready to discuss what you want to sell to the customer. Do this by explaining your brand’s features and benefits in a way that appeals to their present motives. In this way, you can filter your points into something that’s beneficial to your prospects, satisfying their needs.

Since maintaining audience attention is one of your goals, include only what’s relevant to your listeners. Imagine pitching to your prospects without being aware of what they’re currently looking for. You’ll end up wasting both your time and energy, even losing people’s interest. This is why it’s vital that you know their exact expectations to effectively get your message across.

Step 4. Answer their questions.

Making Sales: Answering question

After you’re done explaining how your brand will benefit the prospects, anticipate responses on their part. Although some presenters look at inquiries negatively, they can become your ladder to success. Think about it: if they’re not interested or they don’t care about your offer, your audience can just easily ignore your pitch in the first place.

Objections are different from rejections. The former is common in any transaction between a prospect and a sales professional. This is where the probing strategy is most effective. When they raise a question or an objection, it could be because they didn’t fully understand your point. In this case, consider explaining your ideas in detail and focus on your main points. Doing so enables you to reiterate your message and clarify each point being discussed.

Browne states that using the listen-agree-suggest method can help you turn these objections into a “yes”. By lending your ears and listening to what they have to say, it’ll appear that you value and respect their sentiments. After hearing their side, provide your agreement and propose a better recommendation that will help them obtain what they want.

Step 5. Seal the deal.

Making Sales: Seal the deal

The fifth and final step of the selling process is closing the deal. Once you discover their motivation, clarify each idea, present your offerings, and respond to their concerns, you can proceed to a more persuasive approach in the sales process. For some, this might be one of the most difficult parts, but it can be also the most exciting. This is where you’ll summarize the entire conversation and convince the prospects to make purchasing decisions.

Aside from ending your pitch with a well-designed presentation deck and a powerful call-to-action, you can create a sense of urgency that’ll entice them to take immediate action. Discounts or promos may help in persuading people.

As much as possible, convince them to decide now rather than tomorrow. Activate their impulse factors and keep the momentum. Make the most out of your time and see how it’ll all be worth it.

One Step at a Time

Making Sales: One step at a time

It’s no secret that not everyone will be pleased with your offerings. However, it shouldn’t be an excuse to quit trying.

Before making a sale, identify your prospect’s needs to avoid wasting both your time and effort. Remember, your job is to help your prospect meet their objectives and reach their goals through your offer.

Although sales focuses on getting higher numbers, rushing won’t help. You need to follow each step carefully to attain your goal. Try this technique and see how it can improve your pitch from this day onwards.

To craft a more direct presentation, contact our team of professional designers today and ask for a free quote!

 

Reference

Browne, Harry. The Secret of Selling Anything. 2008. Accessed June 21, 2016.

Improve Your Presentation with Dan Pink’s Types of Pitches (Part 1)

Pitching isn’t just about selling – at least not directly. Our daily conversations during work, and personal matters all involve communicating. We try to influence others with our opinions, sentiments, and preferences everyday.

This means that delivering a pitch involves getting your message across to your listeners.

In his book, To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others, author and speaker Daniel Pink introduced the six successors to the elevator pitch: the one-word pitch, the question pitch, the rhyming pitch, the subject line pitch, the twitter pitch, and the Pixar pitch.

These modernized types of pitches can be used by sales professionals to communicate with the audience better. This achieves a clearer, more convincing sales presentation.

In this post, we’ll cover the first three types of pitches that you can use to enhance your content.

1. The One-word Pitch

The idea of one-word pitch or “one-word equity” was conceptualized by Maurice and Charles Saatchi, founders of Saatchi & Saatchi, one of the world’s top advertising agencies. By condensing your brand in one word, it can help your audience remember what you’re planning to convey.

Nowadays, people have limited attention spans. Microsoft‘s study explains that the human attention span has declined from eight seconds to twelve in 2013. Given this limited timespan, presentations become more effective when they’re shorter.

This means every presenter’s message needs to be clear and more direct, if only because clients will have an easier time remembering your main points.

Some large firms incorporate this to their slogans to promote a more comprehensive way of presenting their brands to customers. For example, the word “search” is often associated with Google.

How to Get Started:

Pink advises presenters: “Write a 50-word pitch. Reduce it to 25 words. Then to six words. One of those remaining half-dozen is almost certainly your one-word pitch.”

Ask yourself: If there’s one word you can use to describe your brand, what is it? Identify your objectives to guide you in crafting a more focused pitch. Decide what you want your audience to remember after hearing your brand name, or after letting them visualize your marketing campaign.

This will help you come up with a powerful word that fits your desired plan. It can also instill a catchier, more memorable name you can associate with your business or brand.

2. The Question Pitch

There’s nothing more effective than questions that’ll motivate audiences to take action. Though you shouldn’t rely on this all the time, Pink’s research suggests certain questions become more persuasive when they possess a strong argument.

For example, when Ronald Reagan was running for president in 1980, he chose to ask: “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?”, instead of mentioning America’s then-current economic recession and proving his point with numbers.

Rhetorical questions like these are used to compelling the audience to resolve the point being discussed, while letting them absorb the message you want to deliver.

Probing questions are also effective when convincing your listeners to share their stories and experiences, while voicing their concerns. Asking “Does this product interest you?” is way too open-ended from “Will this product provide convenience and solution to your concern?” The latter emphasizes the benefit and convinces your prospect to consider the offer.

How to Get Started:

Pink suggests: Use this if your arguments are strong. If they’re weak, make a statement. Or better yet, find some new arguments.”

If a statement won’t work, add a question to your pitch. This will prompt your listeners to answer it silently in their minds.

When crafting your pitch, gather all the facts and resources needed, and organize relatable details or information to prioritize them. This lets you pinpoint what particular argument is more effective in a question form. It also ensures your listeners or prospects will understand the entire topic to make it more convincing.

3. The Rhyming Pitch

Pink states that “pitches that rhyme increase processing fluency.” This makes the message easier to digest and internalize.

The following example shows how rhyming and non-rhyming words differ:

  • Woes unite foes. (original rhyming version)

  • Woes unite enemies. (modified non-rhyming version)

You’ll notice that the first sentence is much more interesting to hear than the second one. Incorporating rhyming words in your speech also improves audience recall as it produces a pleasant sound when they’re pronounced.

Another example would be: “Videos can sustain what text can’t explain” has more impact than plainly saying it as “Videos can sustain text that lacks explanation.”

How to Get Started:

Pink states: Don’t rack your brain for rhymes. Go online and find a rhyming dictionary.” Use the Internet to look for a rhyming dictionary. This will help you restructure plain and simple statements into rhyming sentences.

Before applying it to your presentation, start by identifying your main points. Try out rhyming words to see if they’d work well together in one statement. You can also ask one of your colleagues for his opinion towards your pitch and give you his feedback.

Be careful not to overdo it. Choose among and focus only on the ideas relevant to your subject for greater emphasis and easier retention. This will generate more interest among your listeners and draw attention to your performance.

Conclusion

Pink’s first three techniques not only offer a new approach in making your pitch more powerful and memorable. Applying these types can guide you in presenting your ideas creatively.

Think of a word that’ll give your brand or business much exposure, and make it catchier enough to increase audience recall.

For greater impact, make sure to deliver a strong argument. Ask questions that convince them to take action. Turn simple sentences into rhyming statements to let your listeners be more attentive to what you’re conveying.

Try it yourself and you’ll be amazed by how it positively affects the way people better understand your message. Master these three approaches to allow for a better and more focused presentation that your audience will remember.

To craft a more direct presentation, contact our team of professional designers today and ask for a free quote!

 

References

“3 Ways to Pitch Your Idea.” Inc.com. April 11, 2013. Accessed January 19, 2016. www.inc.com/thebuildnetwork/3-ways-to-pitch-your-idea.html
Gabrielsen, Jonas, and Tanja Juul Christiansen. The Power of Speech. Copenhagen: Hans Reitzel, 2010.
“How does digital affect Canadian attention spans?” Microsoft. n.d. Accessed February 1, 2016. http://advertising.microsoft.com/en/cl/31966/how-does-digital-affect-canadian-attention-spans
Pink, Daniel H. To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth about Moving Others. New York: Riverhead Books, 2012.
“Practice Your 6 Pitches.” To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth about Moving Others, 2012. Accessed January 19, 2016. www.danpink.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/sixpitches.pdf
Snider, Emma. “6 Types of Sales Pitches Every Seller Should Know.” HubSpot. January 6, 2015. Accessed January 19, 2016. http://blog.hubspot.com/sales/sales-pitches-every-seller-should-know

 

Featured Image: “Dan Pink 1” by Ethan Beute on flickr.com

Content or Delivery: Which Matters Most in a Presentation?

Most professionals believe that delivery is more vital than the content itself. This is because they know how a certain action or behavior might be interpreted by different people. Others assert that content is most important, implying that it’s what informs listeners the most.

Sometimes, we tend to focus more on someone’s delivery when we aren’t convinced with what’s being said. Audiences don’t only perceive verbal messages, they also interpret how you project and behave on stage.

But which is more important: content or delivery?

According to public speaking coach Georgina Kirk, both are important pillars of your presentation. Should one fall, the other goes with it. Here’s how to sharpen both your content and delivery for a winning pitch:

Planning Matters

Before crafting your pitch, you must first consider your audience. Presentation trainer Garr Reynolds suggests that one of the best ways to an effective pitch is by knowing your specific audience before you present. This allows you to come up with ideas and the appropriate approach to best engage them.

Are you presenting in front of your colleagues, business partners, or clients? Do you want to inspire, encourage, or persuade them to take actions after you perform? Knowing this beforehand lets you narrow down what you need to say (content) and how you should say it (delivery).

Spicing Up Your Content

This involves gathering facts about your subject matter and including visuals emphasizing your main points. Consider what your audience needs to recall after you deliver your message. Removing all the irrelevant information improves your speech. It can also prevent you from confusing and misleading your audience.

Aside from the verbal content, your visuals can also give life to your presentation. You can hire a PowerPoint expert to design your deck, or ask a colleague to check what you’ve already come up with. This will help you craft a more interactive and stunning slide deck.

Improving Your Delivery

Connecting with your audience doesn’t just depend on your speech’s content. It also relies on how your delivery complements and emphasizes your message. Think about theater actors who use their body movements to engross the crowd with their performance.

Speech coach Craig Valentine gives a few tips on improving speech delivery. These involve eye contact, gestures, postures, and facial expressions, all of which can contribute to a successful communication more than the content itself. They add impact and emphasis to spoken words, making it more comprehensible for audiences. In a way, they are their own unspoken form of language.

Conclusion

While many presenters prioritize delivery, you shouldn’t neglect how much your audience will learn from your main content. You may have the most interesting topic of all time, but an uninteresting speech will bore your audience.

An entertaining presentation style may enthrall listeners, but will achieve nothing if your content lacks concrete and valuable information. This only proves that content and delivery are both vital to a successful performance. While the former can help you educate your audience, the latter can highlight your message and generate audience interest.

So when you plan and prepare for your next pitch, do it with outstanding content and delivery to achieve your desired outcome. To help you out with your presentation, SlideGenius’ PowerPoint professionals can offer you a free quote!

 

References

Valentine, Craig. “10 Ways to Improve Your Speech Delivery.” Craig Valentine. March 7, 2010. Accessed August 10, 2015.
Content vs Delivery.” Learn Public Speaking Skills. October 13, 2012. Accessed August 10, 2015.
10 Tips for Improving Your Presentations & Speeches.” Presentation Zen. Accessed August 10, 2015.