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Question and Answer: How to Respond to Sales Inquiries

How you respond to inquiries is key to increasing sales in any business. This measures how interested people are in your business.

The more relevant your product or service seems to them, the more feedback you get.

In turn, this gives you the opportunity to reel in new customers. But this will depend on how effective your replies are.

Don’t miss your chance. Know how to make a sale with the right response.

Reply Fast for Prompt Responses

When you take a sales inquiry, answering the client’s question is only the means to an end.

This objective is to get people to avail your services.

You can determine a customer’s interest in you by correspondence.

In this case, the transaction shouldn’t end with your reply.

How customer responds can also test how engaged they are.

To do that, you need to address their concerns immediately.

Putting off a potential client for too long can lead them to look for other options.

Customers want to know whether you value their time or not.

Timely replies make them feel important, increasing your chances of gaining their trust.

Get Straight to the Point

Assume that your prospect doesn’t have time to read through an entire block of text. They want to get to the gist as quickly as they can.

In this case, it’s more efficient to cut down words and address the customer’s concerns as early as possible.

Adding headings to your response can also help people navigate through it. However, just make sure these headings capture your main points based on the customer’s express needs.

Your response to a sales inquiry already says a lot about your company. Analyze the initial query, and pick up hints on what the customer wants from you.

By offering a solution to every point they raise, you assure them you have what they’re looking for.

Create a Follow-up System

Not every sales inquiry you reply to will yield a trusted customer.

You’ll want to know if you’re investing in the right people.

Qualifying your leads prevents you from wasting time and money. The only problem is, without replying to every inquiry, you can’t identify the best prospects.

You can get around this by putting your existing leads on a follow-up system. It can save you the trouble of giving everyone the same amount of effort.

In this system, you divide your prospects into those who you can consistently follow-up on, and those who you don’t have to check on as much.

People with whom you frequently exchange messages are probably closer to buying your product.

Prioritize these customers, but remember to respond to the other inquiries later on.

Conclusion

The way you answer sales inquiries determines how well you handle your prospects.

Give them the right response and your sales inquiry can be converted into a sale.

Respond quickly, but make sure that your message has everything the client is looking for.

Address their concerns and offer your services as the best alternative to other problems they may hint at.

Be as direct as possible in your reply. Don’t delay your core message with too many filler words.

With current leads, you can create a follow-up system that highlights more urgent sales over others.

Once a client invites you to present your sales pitch in real time, you have to prepare your speech and your deck quickly.

Need help preparing your presentation? Contact our SlideGenius experts today for a free quote!

References

Bly, Robert. “The Key to Great Inquiry Fulfillment.” National Mail Order Association. Accessed October 30, 2015. www.nmoa.org/articles/dmnews/KeytoInquiryFulfillmentBB.htm

Donnelly, Tim. “How to Qualify a Sales Lead.” Inc. August 19, 2011. Accessed October 30, 2015. www.inc.com/guides/201108/how-to-qualify-a-sales-lead.html

Hainge, Allen. “How to Respond to Online Listing Inquiries.” Realty Times. May 28, 2002. Accessed October 30, 2015. http://realtytimes.com/agentnews/technologyadvice1/item/16274-20020529_inquiries

Wormley, David. “6 ways to be more effective when responding to inbound sales inquiries.” Healy Consultants. March 31, 2015. Accessed October 30, 2015. www.healyconsultants.com/blog/6-ways-to-be-more-effective-when-responding-to-inbound-sales-inquiries/

Featured Image: “Mail” by Bogdan Suditu on flickr.com

The Most Important Slides Your Pitch Deck Needs in a Sales Pitch

The number of slides in your presentation depends on two things: your audience and the type of presentation you’re delivering. For sales pitches, there are some things you need to keep standard, like your company background, what you’re selling, etc.

Want to know the information you need for your slide deck? We’ve taken advice from renowned entrepreneur Guy Kawasaki and listed down the most important slide content of a sales pitch.

Company Background

Before anything else, let your audience know who you are. Prospects will be less likely to listen or invest in you if you don’t provide your background information. Give them an overview of your job description, and company. This should include its name and a brief of its history.

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This part of your pitch doesn’t have to be lengthy at all. It shouldn’t take more than one introductory slide. Use this as an opportunity to squeeze in your company contact details. Your goal is for potential customers to call you up after your pitch.

Value Proposition

Once you’ve gotten introductions out of the way, it’s time to go into your business plan. Describe the problem or opportunity and present your product as its solution. Don’t be vague about your descriptions. Discuss how your product solves the problem and highlight what sets you apart from others who offer similar services. Avoid wordy slides and lengthy speeches too. Diagrams and flowcharts will drive home your point faster. Also, take this as an opportunity to present a demo or a sample to give them an idea of what they’ll invest in.

People don’t just want to hear about how good you are. They want to see how effective your offer really is. Showing them your product at work can convince them of what you’re capable of doing.

Financial Projections and Current Status

While you’ll want to impress investors during your pitch, you should also stay factual and realistic. Run your audience through a feasible timeline of your project. Build up your journey from your current status to what you hope to accomplish, both in the long-term and the short-term. Prepare a financial forecast, possibly for the next three to five years. Include an outlook of what the near future looks like for other key metrics as well. Tell people how far you are in your timeline. Some updates you can include are how much funds you have and how you plan to allocate them to achieve your objectives.

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Once you have this information, explain the actions you’re taking to fulfill your forecast. Enumerate your present accomplishments, and expound on how they contribute to your business goals.

Assuring your listeners that you’re on your way increases the likelihood of them investing in you.

Seal the Deal

Your PowerPoint’s content should reflect all the key points to discuss with your audience. An introductory slide establishes who you are and where you stand. After establishing rapport, explain your product or service to people. Without being too technical, describe its value and how it differs from any competitors. Have diagrams and flowcharts replace complex data. If available, give a demo or a sample to concretize your point. Give a three-to-five-year forecast of your product’s progress, and keep the audience on track of where you currently are in your timeline. Cover all these points, to give investors a better perspective of your business.

Once you’re done fleshing out your presentation content, it’s time to figure out your design. Consult with our SlideGenius experts today for a free quote!

 

References:

Kawasaki, Guy. “The Only 10 Slides You Need in Your Pitch.” Guy Kawasaki. March 5, 2015. www.guykawasaki.com/the-only-10-slides-you-need-in-your-pitch
Markowitz, Eric. “7 Deadly Sins of Sales Pitching.” Inc. April 18, 2011. www.inc.com/ss/7-deadly-sins-sales-pitching
Okyle, Carly. “The Only 10 Slides Needed When Pitching Your Business (Infographic).” Entrepreneur. March 18 2015. www.entrepreneur.com/article/244098
“Key Performance Indicators.” Klipfolio. n.d. www.klipfolio.com/resources/kpi-examples

 

Featured Image: “Encore Event Planning Seminar-38” by SpokaneFocus on Flickr.com

Face the FAQ: 3 Frequently Asked Questions in Presentations

Most presentations include a Q&A portion at the end. Some speakers dread it because they never know what to expect. Questions can be particular to the subject at hand, but broad ones can pop up anytime, anywhere. Knowing the most common ones will help you stay on your toes and be prepared for anything.

Here are three frequently asked questions in presentations:

1. “Can you expound on a specific point you mentioned?”

Being thrown something like this doesn’t automatically mean your delivery was bad. After all, the fact that you’re being asked questions indicates that you’ve gotten your audience’s attention.

It might be because a part of your presentation wasn’t clear enough for your listeners. On the other hand, it could also be an expression of interest in your topic. In both cases, take it as a chance to elaborate and back up your ideas. If you missed some things during your actual speech, you can pick them back up here.

But your answers should still be based on the objectives you set out with during your presentation. Straying too far from the topic will confuse you and the audience. Trust what you know about your topic and stick with it.

2. “What is the relevance of your presentation?”

This is a question you need to address before you even start drafting your pitch. It may not be asked outright, but always consider the possibility of having to answer it during your speech.

Your presentation should always be relevant to the audience. People who are invested in something will dedicate their time and attention on it. Make sure to look up your listeners to get some valuable information about who they are and what they want to get out of your expectation. This way, you can align your vision with their expectations.

Adjust your content accordingly to accommodate their preferences. This will make your presentation’s relevance easier to spot. However, if you’re still faced with this question despite already giving an answer, just emphasize your main points in relation to your audience’s concerns.

Be clear about the connection between your message and the people’s interests. Your listeners will appreciate your presentation more.

3. “According to another source, there’s a different perspective or method available. How will you respond to this?”

Depending on how it’s asked, this question may be the most challenging to answer. Process the query first and see if it really does refute your message. If it doesn’t, point out the specific part of your presentation that’s similar to the point raised.

Just remember to remain polite and composed when admitting fault. Don’t turn the listener off by disregarding their question. If the concern is valid, acknowledge it first before enumerating your topic’s advantage over the other point.

While you want to frame your own presentation in the best light possible, you should also be a good sport when it comes to tough questions. According to speech communication professor, Stephen Boyd, this especially comes in handy when the inquiries come in the form of a loaded question or a rude comment. Respond to both by rephrasing the question into something easier to answer.

Always be the bigger person in such situations. It only shows that you’re a professional and credible speaker.

Conclusion

The Q&A is an important part of any presentation. It’s one of the simplest forms of audience engagement. You can see how much an audience was affected by your speech by observing what type of questions they ask. Instead of seeing it as a threat, consider it an opportunity to bring up things you forgot. Remain grounded in your objectives and keep your cool in the face of difficult questions.

There’s no one way to a good answer. It’s your ability to provide a logical and clear response that counts. A good speaker needs a good PowerPoint to boot – a clear delivery thanks to a clever mix of text and visuals can surely enhance the quality of the questions you’ll get.

Reference

Boyd, Stephen. “Question and Answer Session after the Presentation.” Succeed in Public Speaking by Ron Kurtus: School for Champions. Accessed October 15, 2015. www.school-for-champions.com/speaking/boyd_q_a_after_pres.htm

 

Featured Image: “Question!” by Stefan Baudy on flickr.com

Leave Your Mark: Apply Personal Branding in Presentations

Attracting audience attention is one of the most difficult tasks in a presentation. It’s likely that they’ve already heard what you have to say from other speakers, and in different media. You might think your pitch is unique, but its general thought may be similar to what others have thought of before.

So how do you apply personal branding in presentations? And how do you make sure you look better than the competition? Setting yourself apart is important in making and leaving a good impression.

Don’t pass by unnoticed. Market yourself and your pitch in three ways:

Keep Your Friends Close, and Your Competition Closer

Studying your audience is a necessary prerequisite to effective communication. Aligning your own vision with your target market’s interests guarantees their attention. To do that, you’ll have to do a bit of research on your part and look up your audience’s preferences.

But getting people’s to stay tuned isn’t enough. Reel them further in and assure them that you’re the best by searching for your competitors as well. We don’t mean backbiting and sabotage, though. We’re talking about looking at premises similar to yours and seeing how you can spin it into something novel and unique. One way of achieving that is taking on the idea from a different angle than those already used before.

Influence & Co. CEO and co-founder, John Hall, cites ways on how to take a unique approach to your brand. These include looking at your company strengths, qualifications, and insight. Another is by looking at your competition’s weaknesses and framing it as your strength. These give you and your presentation a distinct image and a memorable characteristic.

Create a Relatable Narrative

Once you’re sure of your strategy, the next step is figuring out how to deliver your message. Among the most successful methods is framing your presentation in a narrative, preferably one your audience can relate to. People can follow the flow of your speech better when it has a beginning, middle, and end. Incorporating familiar tropes and images also keeps them interested.

However, remember that in relating a story, you have to apply the conversational tone. This establishes rapport and eases built up tension before and during a presentation. Avoid using too much jargon or foreign words, and explain each point thoroughly without talking down to your audience.

Talk to your audience as you would an esteemed friend. They’ll return the favor by responding in the same way.

Gain Believers through Quality

The final and best option to distinguish your presentation over everyone else’s is to be on top of your game. This is a foolproof technique to appear credible and relevant before, during, and after your presentation.

Make a good first impression by maintaining your confidence and composure. Come in prepared and ready to present. Acquaint yourself with the venue and the audience so you know how to set the mood. Don’t get lax with your exposition, though.

An audience will be impressed with consistency in how you handle yourself, especially when you encounter unexpected hurdles mid-speech. Keep your energy up until the end of your presentation. It’s also good to reserve some extra energy in case your audience has further clarifications for you.

No one wants to listen to a drained speaker. Project as much of your liveliness as you can to best engage your listeners.

Conclusion

People are always on the lookout for originality. It may seem tough when plenty of people have had the chance to make their mark. However, it’s not entirely impossible, either. You have to strategically organize your content to be different from your competitors’, converse with your audience, and improve the quality of your performance.

Distinguishing yourself from other presenters isn’t so hard when you know where to start. Strong personal branding also needs to be backed up by a professional PowerPoint presentation. Contact our SlideGenius experts today for a free quote!

 

References

“4 Ad Agency Secrets for Better Brand Building.” Women on Business. October 11, 2015. Accessed October 14, 2015. www.womenonbusiness.com/4-ad-agency-secrets-for-better-brand-building
Hall, John. “Setting Yourself Apart in a Competitive Industry.” Forbes. October 18, 2012. Accessed October 14, 2015. www.forbes.com/sites/johnhall/2012/10/18/setting-yourself-apart-in-a-competitive-industry

 

Featured Image: “Personal Branding: Revision 2 / 20080115.10D.47540 / SML” by See-ming Lee on flickr.com

Presentation Tip: Handling Difficult Questions

Poorly fielded questions can make or break an otherwise excellently delivered presentation. When you don’t know how to address concerns, your credibility as a speaker is reduced. Don’t shy away from answering questions. They can help clarify your information to the audience.

Preparation is key to make sure you can answer anything pertaining to your topic. Despite your best efforts, there are still questions that you may not have the answer for. Don’t resort to answering with filler words when you do encounter a difficult question.

Be honest about what you know and answer honestly.

Rogue Questions

A thoroughly planned and researched topic won’t leave any stone unturned. When you cover every possible area, then answering any related question shouldn’t be a problem. Preparation should include the limitations of your topic, and the planned time to answer questions about your presentation. If you do encounter a difficult question, simply focus on how to handle it rather than forcing yourself to come up with an answer.

Brand communications expert, Carmine Gallo, gives a few pointers on how to face these tough questions. First, listen to the question carefully. Take into account the acoustics of the room and the noise coming from the audience. Make sure you get the question right by repeating it back to the questioner. Once the question is clear, directly answer for the questions that you’ve prepared for.

Your answers should be brief and concise, keeping in mind your scheduled time. But if it’s beyond your scope, be prepared to how to handle it.

More Questions

According to leadership coach, Andrew Bryant, when you’re at a loss for words, it’s alright to say that you don’t know. This removes the stress of trying to grasp straws. But instead of stopping with this statement, restate the limits of your presentation. These limits were set in place to ensure that discussion of the topic will be organized and delivered within a reasonable timeframe.

Return to certain key points in your presentation to further explain why and how these limitations were set in place.

Trick Questions

Acknowledge every question that comes your way, even if you can’t answer them for different reasons. This includes inappropriate or ill-timed questions. If setting limits won’t stop interruptions, acknowledge the question but delay the answer. There are questions which require such a lengthy response, making your presentation look like a one-on-one discussion.

State politely that you’d like to give others the chance to ask their questions and that there will be another opportunity to contact you for further clarification. After entertaining all questions, make sure to end your Q & A session with your final message.

This appropriately concludes the discussion on your terms.

Pass the Test

Be prepared for what to say even if there isn’t a clear-cut answer. Unlike a real test, we don’t have the answers to everything. Listen to the question carefully and see if the content of your presentation already has the answers. And if not, focus only on what you know and why this works to everyone’s advantage.

Some questions can’t or shouldn’t be answered. But they still warrant your time and attention as the speaker, so treat every concern with respect. Once you’ve finished handling difficult questions, end the presentation with your final message.

With all concerns addressed, your listeners will find you more convincing and credible as a speaker.

 

References

Bryant, Andrew. “Presentation Skills – Dealing with Difficult Questions.” Self Leadership International. April 7, 2009. Accessed October 12, 2015. www.selfleadership.com/blog/training/presentation-skills-dealing-with-difficult-questions
Gallo, Carmine. “How to Handle Tough Questions.” Bloomberg Business Week. January 20, 2009. Accessed October 12, 2015.www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/content/jan2009/sb20090120_668348.htm

 

Featured Image: “Interviews” by Stephan Roehl on flickr.com

3 Keys to Emphasizing an Important Point

Your audience won’t be paying attention 100% of the time. Some will be more interested, others will be momentarily distracted, or find it completely difficult to pay attention to the topic. Bring audience attention back to you when the time comes to deliver your most important point.

Pay attention to the central message, since this what the audience should remember after listening to your pitch. Use body language, vocal timing, and slide positioning to let the audience know when it’s time to hear the main part of your presentation.

Maximize Audience Attention

Citing Susan Weinschenk’s best-selling book, 100 Things Every Presenter Needs To Know About People, media trainer Brad Phillips estimates a 10-minute cap on people’s attention spans. The brain can only hold attention for about this long before losing focus. Make it a habit to scan the audience for their reactions every 10 minutes or earlier. When the audience starts to look uninterested and listless, establish eye contact with them.

Make sure to look at each and every person in your field of vision while speaking. In a large crowd, scan the first row, the middle, and then the furthest in the back. Doing this shows that you’re paying attention to them, and makes them feel they’re part of the discussion.

This is also a subtle way of getting each person’s attention without making them uncomfortable. The direct and stronger approach would be to point with your finger, but this can be misconstrued as rude and imposing. When you have their attention back, proceed to introduce your main point.

Command with Your Voice

Lowering instead of increasing your voice’s volume invites the audience to listen more closely. This doesn’t mean that you should whisper for your entire presentation. Speak in a hushed tone just before you say something important as if telling them a secret.

Signal the audience that you’re about to deliver a crucial part of your presentation. You can do this with phrases like “what this is all about”, “the main thing to remember”, “this is important,” etc. Then pause every few words, effectively slowing down your speech.

This builds up anticipation and also gives you a chance to take a break. Reveal the information when the audience is already attentive.

The Big Reveal

There should be one slide that encapsulates your entire idea in as few words as possible. A single word filling up the entire slide creates a bigger impact than an entire paragraph. Some remember information better when they see a visual aid, so choose a relevant image with your concept.

Continuously refer back to this slide to repeatedly emphasize your point. But going back to previous slides disrupts the flow of your speech. Instead of going back through slides, repeat the same slide throughout the presentation.

Since repetition helps in memory recall, you can drive your point home using this method.

Orchestrate Events

Know when and how to reel your audience back to you. Start by gauging the attentiveness of your audience through eye contact, then invite them back. Make them feel how important what you’re about to reveal in the next few moments is.

Gently persuade them through carefully timed pauses and vocal tone. Dedicate one slide for your big reveal. This can be a single word, phrase, picture, or any combination of each.Repeat this slide throughout your deck so you don’t have to keep going back. Create the upwards momentum using these methods when emphasizing an important point.

 

References

“10 Ways To Emphasise An Important Point During Your Presentation.” Outspoken.co. May 13, 2013. Accessed October 12, 2015. www.outspoken.co/emphasize-an-important-point/
“How Many Minutes Is The Audience’s Attention Span?” Mr. Media Training. August 23, 2012. Accessed October 12, 2015. www.mrmediatraining.com/2012/08/23/how-many-minutes-is-the-audiences-attention-span/

 

Featured Image: “Canadian Film Centre” by Sarjoun Faou on flickr.com

The Perfect Finale: How to End a Presentation

Saying goodbye to a friend isn’t a big deal. So why does it feel so difficult to do after concluding a speech?

Talking to a crowd anywhere between 15 minutes to an hour is draining. There’s even a lot of multitasking involved, especially when delivering PowerPoint presentations. Speakers have to divide their focus and attention under time pressure. It’s no surprise that they’d want to leave as soon as they can.

But hold on to your last energy reserves before pulling a Houdini. You still have one more chance to leave a great and lasting impression.

Don’t Rush to the End

We focus so much on making a good first impression that we forget to make the last one just as memorable. The end of a presentation for you is just the beginning for the audience. You have a better grasp of the subject, but the audience still needs time to process everything. A final summary of your key points will be a friendly and helpful reminder for them.

Extend your social graces offstage by offering to answer questions in addition to giving a final summary. Time management is crucial in accomplishing this. If you have 30 minutes for a presentation, plan to run it in 20 minutes or less.

This ensures you have enough time for a quick Q&A session. Use the end of your speech to make sure that your listeners have understood your topic properly.

Reel In One Last Time

The worst that can happen to any presentation is when the audience starts leaving before you do. Either you extended your speech too long, or they simply have to go. Fight off the distraction these interruptions create. Redirect attention to yourself using tone, body language, and persuasive rhetoric.

When you go beyond the allotted time or catch yourself making a mistake, avoid apologizing to the crowd. It may be counterintuitive, but apologizing will draw even more attention to your mistake. Mentally acknowledge your mistake and move on. Dwelling on a mistake contributes nothing to the discussion and can even hurt your image.

According to Entrepreneur‘s Jason HeadsetsDotCom, when your energy goes down, you bring down the energy of the audience with you. End your speech on a lighter, positive tone. But if giving jokes isn’t your forte, don’t force it in the last minute. Return to your main point and emphasize your message to the crowd one last time.

Synchronize

We’re only as good as our last impression, so always leave a good one behind. Don’t leave without saying a word. End with an optimistic and sincere remark. Being genuine is important in making connections. The audience will be quick to notice when you’re only putting on an act. Abruptly leaving without a proper goodbye also reflects poorly on your image. Courtesy shouldn’t be limited to certain people and places. You should be able to take it with you wherever you go.

Always be prepared for the worst and don’t let any internal or external distractions rattle you. The stage is yours from start to finish so take command of it. If someone steals your thunder inadvertently or otherwise, prepare to take it back. Your presentation doesn’t end on the last slide.

 

References

Sadler, Jason. “10 Honest and Completely Helpful Tips for Hitting a Public-Speaking Homerun.” Entrepreneur. December 2, 2013. Accessed October 8, 2015. http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230079

 

Featured Image: “Microphone” by Photo Cindy on flickr.com

Count from 6 to 10: A Quick Guide to Great Presentations

We’ve previously discussed how the numbers one to five can make your business presentations count. This was based off keynote speaker Stephen Boyd’s tips to create a presentation countdown. With our own take on it, let’s continue counting from number six to number ten.

6. Presenting after SIX o’clock P.M.

Business professionals work eight hours on a regular basis. After a long day, only a few stay later than six o’clock p.m. to polish their paperwork, web designs, PowerPoint slides, and the like. After all, we want to get back to our families and our lives, right?

Deliver your presentations as if you’re doing them after six in the evening. Embody the elements of fun, involvement, and learning to keep your audience awake. Treat your audience like close friends and family you’ve been longing to see. Sustain their interest from the beginning to end, no matter how late it is.

7. Seven Means Complete

According to the Bible, the number seven has three Hebrew roots: saba, shaba and sheba. These three biblical ideas are associated with oaths, perfection, and completeness. Whether you’re delivering a pitch to a potential client or discoursing a monthly report with co-workers, your PowerPoint presentation should contain complete data.

Providing evidence supports your argument or main idea. Maximize the use of graphs and charts, statistics, and other visuals for a more comprehensive discussion. Inevitably, your audience will have questions or clarifications which you can tackle in a Q&A session. However, it pays to address all of these possible questions from the beginning to make things easier for everyone.

8. Eight for Affinity

The number eight is drawn with two interconnecting circles. Lacking one circle, either at the top or at the bottom, means you have zero. Presentations are about making connections. Your business speech is useless without an audience.

Command interest by connecting with them on a personal level. You can best engage an audience by exuding a credible aura, by appealing to their emotions, or by challenging their intellect. Building networks after your business pitch is another way to solidify your core message, and get viable results as well.

9. Nine for Anticipation

Where there’s nine, an end is anticipated — nine is followed by ten, ninety-nine makes way for one hundred, and so on. Anticipating unforeseeable circumstances in your talk is a good presentation skill. Don’t make your audience tune out because you panicked or lost your train of thought. Always be prepared for whatever can go wrong in a speaking engagement.

Planning ahead increases your chances of foreseeing or dealing with such problems.

10. Perfect Ten

There’s no denying that the number ten connotes perfection. Ten is a rounded number, which is why our counting system is based on the power of ten. We rate things with one being the lowest and ten being the highest. Striving for perfection is the best mindset for succeeding in your business presentation.

Make sure that your PowerPoint design has the perfect font combo and title slide. Reinforce it with confident delivery and compelling content. Always aim for a deck that will get a perfect ten rating.

To Sum It Up

Use numbers six to ten as your guide for delivering fun, complete, engaging, planned, and perfect business presentations. Remember the importance of connecting to your audience, sharing complete and pertinent data, appealing to emotions, anticipating crises, and striving for perfection.

Need a PowerPoint deck to give you an edge? Check out our portfolio for inspiration, or contact our slide design experts for a free quote.

 

References

Boyd, Stephen. “Public Speaking By Numbers.” Speaking-Tips, August 17, 2011. Accessed June 10, 2015.
Count from 1 to 5: A Quick Guide to Great Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. July 14, 2015. Accessed August 27, 2015.

A Short Presentation Guide for Introverts

Presentations can pose more than the usual challenge for introverts. After all the preparation, an introvert presenter also has to worry about facing a large group of people.

It’s commonly believed that most introverts aren’t particularly inclined to group situations. However, it doesn’t automatically mean that introverts can’t handle pitching to a crowd. Best-selling author Susan Cain is a perfect example.

Unlike their counterparts, introverts are better with intrapersonal or “inward-turning” activities.

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An introvert will have little difficulty preparing the basic aspects of his presentation, like content and design. The real challenge is learning to be comfortable in front of a crowd and making sure all ideas are properly shared with the audience.

If you’re among the millions of people who identify as introverts, here’s a presentation guide that will help you command your presence in front of an audience:

Learn what you can about the audience

You might be better prepared to face a large crowd if you have enough information about them beforehand.

Because introverts are said to be better attuned to the needs of others, knowing that your presentation is exactly what the audience is expecting may put you at ease.

Of course, to get to that point, do some research first.

Learn what you can about the audience so you can tailor your presentation closer towards their expectations. In particular, answer these questions to identify the approach you need to take.

Don’t skimp on practice 

There’s no other way to feel comfortable about presenting than by practicing your skills.

It will take a little bit more time, but it can go a long way in making sure that your presentation is properly delivered and executed.

Even with a tight schedule, you can still set aside some time to practice your presentation bit by bit.

Practice how you want to say each part of your presentation, as well as how you plan to use your body language to emphasize your points.

Continue practicing after everything so that you’re ready when the next presentation opportunity heads your way.

Embrace your anxiety 

It doesn’t matter whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, feeling nervous about a big presentation is completely normal.

Not everyone will feel fully confident about any task if there’s a lot of pressure to perform properly. The harder you try to ignore your anxiety, the more your discomfort will be evident to the audience. All you can do is accept how you feel and work to make sure it doesn’t get in your way.

Start by performing relaxation and movement exercises right before the presentation.You can also try to pump yourself up with some powerful music.

Try to get yourself excited so that you can start at a positive note.

Presentations are hard work, especially for introverts who have to work outside their comfort zone. Use this guide to make sure you’re well prepared to face the audience and create a sustained connection with them.

 

References:

4 Different Ways to Practice Your Presentation Skills.” SlideGenius, Inc. September 15, 2014. Accessed March 11, 2015.
4 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Audience.” SlideGenius, Inc.. August 28, 2014. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Cain, Susan. “The Power of Introverts.” The Huffington Post. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Introversion.” Psychology Today. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Presentation Set Up: 5 Things to Do Before You Start Speaking.” SlideGenius, Inc. September 2, 2014. Accessed January 28, 2015.
The Power of Introverts. Susan Cain. TED, 2012.

 

Featured Image: Paintings by Robert via flickr