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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

3 Presentation Tips Speakers Can Learn from Comedians

Comedians are known for telling humorous stories, jokes, and monologues that bring excitement and interest to audiences. Corporate presenters, on the other hand, focus more on delivering detailed information to inform and persuade the crowd.

Do you need to be a comedian to be an effective presenter?

No, but there are few crucial tips that stand-up comedians can teach professional speakers about delivering sales presentations.

What, then, do comedians and public speakers have in common? Where do they differ, and what lessons can we learn from them?

What’s the Secret?

Comedians are experts at cracking jokes and convincing audiences to have fun during their performance. Like them, you can do humorous presentations that convince the crowd to listen while understanding your message. They also use silence to emphasize a certain point and give the audience time to absorb a particular idea.

Aside from your presentation’s content, your delivery can also contribute to a successful communication.

To help you become a more confident, passionate, and entertaining speaker, here are three things to consider:

1. Be Prepared

Presentation Tips: Be well preparedLack of practice will only harm your pitch. If you don’t make time for it, chances are, you’ll get sidetracked by unexpected situations.

Preparation is still the best way to manage your fear and overcome anxiety. If you know your content by heart, you’ll be able to deliver a clear presentation. This involves warming up your voice, mastering proper facial expressions, and rehearsing your business pitches to engage your audience effectively.

2. Stay Away from the Lectern

Presentation Tips: Stay away from the lectrensLecterns aren’t bad at all. While they can be used to hide your notes and materials from your audience, comedians often avoid lecterns and focus on throwing puns at their audiences. They also maintain eye contact so as not to lose their attention and keep them in tune.

When presenting, avoid relying too much on the lectern. This can help you concentrate on dealing with the crowd and remove any barriers that create distance between you and your listeners.

3. Learn from Failures

Presentation Tips: Learn from failuresEverybody makes mistakes, including presenters.

Making people laugh is one of the hardest things to do. However, comedians do their best to meet this expectation.

When you fail, remember: it can teach you to be a better presenter. Giving up will only stop you from improving. Understand this: all professionals experience hardships. Use this knowledge to improve and excel.

The Punchline: Learn the Basics

Presentation Tips: PunchlineBeing well-prepared, staying away from the lectern, and learning from failures are only a few lessons presenters can borrow from comedians. Once you master these techniques, you’ll be able to develop good relationships and achieve a more effective presentation.

To help you deliver a more dynamic and entertaining presentation, SlideGenius experts can assist you and offer you a free quote.

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Prepare Your Defenses: Battling Noise in Sales Presentations

As we’ve seen in stories, zombies are drawn to loud noises. This lets them swarm you and prevent you from reaching whatever goal you have set. Applying this in our line of work as presenters, there’s no better way to infect the audience with zombie-like expressions than letting noise interfere with your own pitch.

It’s impossible to get your message across if the crowd can’t hear you properly, but this isn’t limited to sounds that your audience can hear. Noise can also come in the form of unnecessary interruptions that get in the way of your business presentation. Technical glitches, distracting colors, inappropriate pictures, unreadable fonts, even a malfunctioning air conditioner can all count as noise.

Simply put, anything that makes your listeners uncomfortable is a potential hazard. These can prevent you from convincing them to invest in your proposal, which means lost partners and potential profits. Fortunately, there are two types of noise and three ways to immunize your clients from it.

In a post written on Public Speaking Tips, professional speaker and author, Lenny Laskowski, states that noise comes in two forms: external and internal.

External Noise

extermal noise in a presentation: walking dead themeThe first type may come from your surroundings, disrupting effective communication with your listeners. An unsilenced phone going off, a tall person blocking the view of another behind him, or an unexpected update notification flashing in the middle of your presentation can get in the way of delivering a successful performance.

Parts of your audio-visual aid might even unintentionally distract your audience. For example, if the speaker volume isn’t high enough, any narration that might be embedded won’t be heard. The same thing applies to your visuals if the screen is too bright or too dark.

Using colors can also be a distraction. If the setting or topic requires formality, using bright colors isn’t ideal to complement a formal presentation. The same goes for times when you need to put on an energetic personality and fire up your audience but end up using dark colors in your slides.

The venue itself is also a factor. If it’s too hot, too dark, or uncomfortable because there aren’t enough seats, people may have trouble listening to you. That’s why you should always check out the area beforehand.

Internal Noiseinternal noise in a presentation: walking dead theme

The second type, internal distractions, are worse because these come from within and may include your own negative thoughts and feelings.

You might be emotionally distracted by being too enthusiastic or possibly tired, which can affect the energy you have for your presentation. A lack of energy or sounding too serious can give the impression that you just want to get your speech over with. It may be fine to sound enthusiastic, but too much of it, like in an investor’s presentation, might make you sound too biased if you make promises without backing them up with hard facts. Alternatively, if you become too serious in an event that needs a more casual and friendly setting, this can send the wrong impression to your clients and infect them with that same lack of interest.

On the other hand, the audience might also be biased or have misgivings about your topic, especially if you present any new unproven products that have yet to enter the market. While skepticism may be unavoidable, you need to prepare for possible contrasting opinions during your Q&A section if you have one.

Here are three things to consider when combatting both types of noise to safeguard your presentation’s success:

1. Detect the Source of Noise detect noise and proceed to your presentation: walking dead theme

Damon Verial, a professional writer and contributor for various Web sites, including eHow, tackles the importance of finding the source of noise. He explains that depending on the importance of the situation, noise should be eliminated through various means.

Careful preparation is what helps you avoid unwanted interruptions, but despite your best efforts, some unexpected circumstances are still hard to prepare for. For example, your laptop might randomly shut off, or your slides could suddenly freeze while presenting. In times like these, you need to have backup devices that have copies of your presentation, if possible, so you can pick up where you left off immediately.

Before striking back, identify the root of the problem to find an immediate solution. Was it lack of preparation that disgruntled you? Or was it a problem with the venue that disturbed your presentation? The former can be taken as a lesson for what to prepare for next time. The latter can be resolved with some help. In this case, ask for the organizer’s help to take control of the situation and minimize any disruptions.

For technical problems, politely ask the coordinator to help you fix any issues so you can continue your presentation. This will help you handle the situation and put everything in place. Lighting problems, sound systems, microphones, and even power cables are things that they should be ready for.

2. Sharpen Your Listening Skills

sharpen listening skills for better presentation: walking dead themeYour job isn’t limited to speaking; listening is also vital to dealing with your audience. With the end goal of delivering a message, improving your listening skills is an essential part of the process. You need to know what concerns your clients will have when you bring your proposal to the table. These aren’t limited to prices. Timelines, implementation costs, and possible benefits are also factors to determining how feasible your proposal can be.

However, passive listening isn’t enough. To be an effective listener, actively seek out and attend to people’s concerns. This lets you better understand what they mean when they ask questions about your topic. After all, noise works both ways too: you need to ask for clarifications if clients voice out their concerns in order to prevent any misunderstanding and give appropriate responses.

By being an attentive listener, you get to answer in a constructive and engaging manner while showing your audience respect. This gives the impression that you genuinely want to know what others need, as opposed to simply pushing your products out and hoping someone will be willing to invest in them.

Aside from convincing them to voice out their opinions, give your viewers a chance to help you clarify anything that needs to be addressed. This prevents any possible misunderstandings that can divert their attention.

3. Harness the Power of Repetition

stress relevant info in your presentation: walking dead theme

Never underestimate the power of repetition when combatting unwanted noise. People remembering your pitch after it’s over can make the difference between success and failure. If your prospects remember what you want them to, and you give them the means to contact you afterwards, you’re halfway to converting more leads to sales.

Simply having excellent speaking skills isn’t enough. You also want your listeners to remember the best parts of your performance. That’s why audience recall is important in any presentation. Keep your points simple enough to repeat them for emphasis but not so much that you endlessly reiterate each one. Are there aspects of your proposal that you can reduce into one to three words? Use these to reinforce your speech and support your facts so that the audience will remember exactly what you stand for.

A simple way to improve recall is to repeat your main points during vital breaks or at the end of your pitch. This highlights important takeaways for the audience, emphasizing your thoughts and stressing relevant information for your listeners to make your pitch memorable.

Done right, it makes your pitch sound more entertaining and convincing.

The Takeaway: Always Stay Alertstay alert: walking dead theme

Always anticipate an onslaught of diversions. These can come from the venue, your equipment, your slides, or even yourself or the audience. Consider the appropriate tools to use and have backups in place when technical breakdowns happen. It won’t hurt to coordinate with your organizers for any contingencies you can use in worst-case scenarios, too. This lets you stay focused to avoid further distracting your listeners.

Instead of immediately going on the offensive, strengthen your defenses against disturbing noises that can ruin your performance. At the same time, maintain a solid feedback line for communicating with your audience. They may not always understand you, but if you take efforts to understand their side of things, you’ll be able to find out exactly what causes the noise on their end. You’ll also come across as someone who wants to build better business partnerships with other people rather than a typical salesman who simply talks about their own products without considering if it’s the right fit for his customers.

Don’t let negative thoughts or circumstances overwhelm you. Combat them by detecting the unnecessary noise, enhancing your listening skills, and reiterating your ideas to make sure everyone gets the point. Once you’ve got unnecessary noise under control, you’ll have the audience focusing on the most important things: the benefits that you can give them, and why they should choose you over the competition. This’ll prevent spreading blank stares to the audience and help you convert more leads for your business.

 

References:

Laskowski, Lenny. “Aspect 6 – The Noise.” Public Speaking Tips, May 22, 2015. www.ljlseminars.blogspot.com
Verial, Damon. “How to Overcome Noise Barriers in Communication.” eHow, n.d. www.ehow.com/how_8031308_overcome-noise-barriers-communication.html

Psychological Biases: The Bandwagon in Sales Presentations

We’ve already discussed the psychology of decision-making and examined the use of anchoring in sales presentations. In this post, we’ll focus on another psychological bias: the bandwagon effect.

If you have high regard for group thinking and conformity, then this brain quirk can help you sell more. Let’s see what makes this technique suitable for your pitch.

Defining the ‘Bandwagon’ Effect

Coined after the political term “jump on the bandwagon”, this refers to voters’ tendencies of choosing the most successful campaign to support. The bandwagon effect implies hopping onto a trend, joining a movement, or supporting something that everyone else has been doing.

According to Hubspot’s Emma Snider, social proof can be a powerfully persuasive tool. People have this natural tendency of following another’s actions regardless of their own beliefs. The likelihood of this increases when more of them begin adopting the idea or behavior.

Why Use This in Presentations?

All marketers aim to increase a product or service’s popularity, so they create marketing efforts for higher product demand at a faster rate. Using the bandwagon effect in presentations gives you the advantage in persuading your audience. It relates to your prospects’ emotions, which in turn increases the popularity of your product and consumer demand.

The idea of popularity introduces your product into the market, which makes people jump onto the bandwagon. It appeals to the human emotions of wanting what others already have, and of fitting in with the majority. Customers will take the word of their fellow consumers for it because they’re sure they aren’t out to sell them anything. Making it appear that there are more users tuned into your product or service reassures them of your quality.

How to Make The Bandwagon Effect Your Ally

You have to adapt to your audience’s needs like how chameleons adapt to their environment. With a handful of product innovations coming, the consumer society is now yearning for transparency, info-bites, and greater customer experiences with the products they use. Cater to these needs by using the bandwagon as social proof.

Introduce your product in a way that strengthens your credibility. Include testimonials from your valued clients or present a statistic that shows how many people have been using your offering.

Giving them quantifiable proof of your product standing and market value is the best way to turn them into buying customers.

Are You In or Out?

The bandwagon effect is one useful psychological bias that relates to consumer decision making.

Use the power of this phenomenon in influencing purchases and experience a breakthrough success in your business.

References

Kay, Magda. “How to Use Cognitive Biases for Effective Marketing.Psychology for Marketers. n.d. Accessed August 3, 2015.
Snider, Emma. “How to Use Psychological Biases to Sell Better and Faster.” Hubspot Blogs. January 31, 2015. Accessed August 3, 2015.

Featured Image: “Dueling Bandwagons” by Eric Kilby from flickr.com

Psychological Biases: Anchor Effects in Sales Presentations

Effective marketing makes a business achieve its salad days. Everything must be aligned accordingly—from the market research, to strategy, and objectives—to obtain favorable results.

All segments pass through the decision-making process, providing marketers better opportunities in the industry.

Here’s how decision making is discussed in the psychological context, and how it can be used to make effective sales presentations.

The Psychology of Decision Making

In psychology, decisions are shaped by individual preferences and behavioral characteristics, which can lead to significant biases. Commonly referred to as cognitive or psychological biases, these are tendencies to draw judgements in an illogical fashion, affecting the overall decision-making process.

A few common biases are anchoring, bandwagon, loss aversion, overconfidence, and confirmation effect. Hubspot’s Emma Snider wrote about the benefits these cognitive biases serve in sales. As a takeaway for this post, we’ll be focusing on selling with the anchoring bias.

Defining the ‘Anchoring’ Effect

You will inevitably have to weigh and compare options when making decisions. We tend to assess probabilities and take actions based on firsthand information. When presented with a new product, we create quick comparisons to something we’ve previously used. This is the anchoring effect.

The bias surfaces when one makes a judgement around the “anchor” or the basis for the decision.

How to Make Anchors Your Ally

You can never escape from hasty judgements, but you can always control them. Think of it as a “first impression” bias. There’s a big chance that your audience members might be hesitant to buy your product due to customer loyalty issues.

According to marketing psychology consultant Magda Kay, avoiding anchoring may be inevitable. These biases are often triggered unconsciously in the client’s mind. However, Kay also suggests that instead of fighting the bias, it’s better to suggest the bias to your prospects.

Highlight your product’s audience benefits at the very beginning of your presentation, followed by its special features. They may think of something to compare with you, but these positive associations will draw an equally positive image of you. This strategy directs your potential customers back to you despite the initial comparison, reinforcing your business in their minds, generating more leads, and increasing sales.

Also make your presentation more engaging by making use of convincing body language. Own the stage you’re in by occasionally moving around and interacting with your audience. A stiff and uninspired delivery may have good content, but unless it connects with your viewers in any way, then people might not listen.

Let Anchors Steer Your Audiences Right

However logical we all think we may be, we all have our biases. Psychological biases influence poor decision making and negative judgements, leading to missed opportunities.

Use the anchoring effect to your advantage to set a positive tone in the overall selling and buying process. Craft your presentation around it correctly, and you’ll steer your audiences in the right direction.

 

References

Kay, Magda. “How to Use Cognitive Biases for Effective Marketing.Psychology for Marketers. n.d. Accessed August 3, 2015.
Snider, Emma. “How to Use Psychological Biases to Sell Better and Faster.” Hubspot Blogs. January 31, 2015. Accessed August 3, 2015.

An Inside Look at How Clients Invest in Your Sales Pitch

Effective presenters take time to know their client’s expectations. This lets them select the best tactic for delivering their sales pitch so they can solve both their client’s problems and their own. Presenters have this advantage because they know how clients connect with their sales pitch proposals, giving them better PowerPoint presentation ideas.

It’s the same process that advertising agencies consider when making customers connect with the brands they advertise. This connection between brands and customers happens on three levels, the most powerful of which according to a study conducted by advertising giant McCann-Erickson, is Emotional Bonding.

1. Product Benefits

Business gurus George and Michael Belch suggest that on this level, clients connect with your brand based on the benefits it can offer.

At this stage, clients have the least amount of loyalty. They are most likely to switch to the competition if they offer something you don’t have.

2. Brand Personality

The next stage is when your clients assign a personality to your brand. This personality is based on the principles and beliefs your brand will stand for.

Brand communications expert, Carmine Gallo, presents a few examples: it can be the cozy hangout Starbucks is known as, the tough off-roaders of Jeep, or even the classic refreshing drink that Coke is touted as. This is when clients start to associate traits or values they share with your brand.

3. Emotional Benefits

At this stage, consumers and clients alike develop emotional attachments to your brand. This is the highest level, where clients constantly seek you out after you’ve done business with them repeatedly.

At this stage, your previous clients will have no problem looking forward to your future pitches, much like how Apple users always looked forward to the late Steve Jobs showing off his new gadget. This level of trust leads to a positive psychological movement towards your company.

It’s arguably the hardest to achieve, but you get the benefit of clients paying their undivided attention to you whenever you present.

The Main Connection: Develop Trust

Connecting with your audience with a business PowerPoint presentation doesn’t happen overnight. After all, repeat customers are what keep companies alive.

Offer a product with the benefits your clients need, define a relatable personality for your brand, and deliver consistently to help you gain your client’s trust in your company. That’s when the long-term emotional connections happen.

To help you get the most out of this advantage, get in touch with SlideGenius.com today!

 

References

Belch, George E., and Michael A. Belch. Advertising and Promotion: An Integrated Marketing Communications Perspective. 6th ed. Singapore: McGraw-Hill Irwin, 2003.
Gallo, Carmine. The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010.
Proprietary Research Technique Called Emotional Bonding.” ZABANGA Marketing. Accessed September 8, 2015.
Using Common Values in PowerPoint Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. April 21, 2015. Accessed September 8, 2015.

3 Things to Remember When Disaster Attacks Your Presentation

Most presenters’ initial response when accidents happen is to worry. They think that there’s no way out when they make mistakes. The same things apply to business presentations.

While some presenters prepare well before they speak in front of their audience, they may fail to account for accidents or delays in their presentation.

When Disaster Strikes

You’re now in front of your prospective clients, ready to deliver your most outstanding pitch. Suddenly, your laptop shuts down, or your PowerPoint slides freeze.

What will you do?

Continue.

It’s been said that “When the going gets tough, the tough gets going.” This means that when certain problems arise, don’t stop. Continue with what you’re doing and focus on your main objective. When you concentrate on delivering your presentation, you’ll eventually set aside your negative thoughts and feelings, allowing you to achieve your desired outcome without being distracted.

Being mentally present also helps you to focus on your audience and avoid getting interrupted by unexpected circumstances. Here are three things to recall when you experience unavoidable situations:

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1. Your Client Understands

When mistakes or accidents happen, it’s normal to feel bad about it. However, remember that your audience feels the same way, too. Understand that this can happen to anyone at any time. After all, there are no perfect presentations.

What’s important is that you’re able to maintain your composure during the pitch.

2. Your Client Still Wishes to Listen.

The reason why your audience attends your pitch is because they want to listen to what you have to say. There may be distractions that will prevent them from getting your message.

However, it’s your job to capture their attention and keep them interested.

3. Your Client Wants You to Continue

Your audience is on your side. Even if you make a mistake, they still want you to continue.

Don’t let these negative thoughts hinder you from delivering your message effectively.

Conclusion

Understanding these three things will help you attain your main goal: the audience’s attention. However, these shouldn’t stop you from planning ahead. Being well-prepared and staying focused allow you to properly manage possible disasters.

When that happens, remember: don’t stop. Just continue. You’ll feel better when you do.

To help you with your presentation needs, let SlideGenius experts assist you!

 

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References

Dlugan, Andrew. “The Only Thing to Do When Disaster Strikes Your Speech.” Six Minutes, March 18, 2010. Accessed June 8, 2015.

Using Emotions to Convince in Your Sales Presentations

Most presenters are concerned about how their audiences perceive them. They think that being formal will make them look professional, but they’re missing one key element in engaging audiences: emotion.

Since it links people together, your goal is to move them to action through their emotions.

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Presenting facts isn’t enough to successfully convey your message to your audience. You also have to meet their emotional needs to fully get their attention.

What They Show

What you project to your audience displays your true self.

Your personality plays a vital role in creating audience engagement. You can’t fully convince them to listen without catching their interest in some way.

While facts and figures are significant in any sales presentations or public speeches, how your audience feels still matters. According to Tony Carlson, “A memorable speech rests on the quality of the connection between the speaker and the audience.”

Consider these three facts when introducing your proposal:

1. Emotions Make Us Human

Whether you’re looking at your notes or making eye contact with your clients, make sure to relate to the audience at all times.

Build connection by making them feel that you, too, are a human being who can be happy, sad or serious.

2. Emotions Help Us Remember

Tell stories that appeal to their emotions. This makes them recall your message and encourages them to take action.

Share your own experiences or mention other examples that are related to your topic. Details become easier to remember through an emotional connection.

3. Emotions Inspire Us to Act

Once you get them to feel your emotions, convince them to take action.

If you introduce a certain issue that affects them, they’ll see a need to resolve it. Doing so motivates them to not just ignore it.

How to Display Emotions

When showing your emotions, use the right words, voice, body gestures and facial expression to balance the way you speak and act in front of a crowd.

Imagine yourself presenting with enthusiasm, yet with a neutral face and stiff posture. It’ll come across as unnatural and confusing.

A combination of these various factors reveals what you really feel inside. If you lack passion, or if you’re not in the mood, it’ll show.

1. Use Emotions Occasionally

Don’t overdo it. Be mindful when to stir your audience’s emotions to avoid losing your presentation’s impact.

Utilize emotions based on your topic. Learn how to insert these in-between your message’s section.

2. Combine Positive Emotions with Negative

Be dynamic in your presentation. Always follow negativity with positive mentions to establish a balance people’s emotions.

3. End on a Positive Note

Don’t assume that your audience will feel better without ending your presentation positively.

If you start giving your main points with an intention to make them feel bad, finish it with a positive assurance which helps them recall both you and your message.

Conclusion

Understanding how emotions are important in your presentation helps you use, handle and manage them accordingly.

This motivates your audience to listen, learn and recall your message even after your presentation.

 

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References

Carlson, Tony. The How of WOW: A Guide to Giving a Speech That Will Positively Blow ’em Away. New York: American Management Association, 2005. Print.
Davis, Keith. “Facts tell… emotions sell.” Easy Public Speaking. October 3, 2010. Accessed May 21, 2015. http://easypublicspeaking.co.uk/using-emotions-in-speeches-and-presentations

5 Sales Presentation Tricks from Advertising Agency Gurus

Advertising agencies and presenters both sell products and services using effective messages, be it in the conference room, a lecture hall, a television, or a webinar.

The problem is that the regular customer or client is subjected to several messages from different companies, each trying to get their products ahead of the competition.

You have to go beyond offering what your competition can’t, because almost all competing companies employ the same strategy.

The Challenge

People construct several standards before making purchase-related decisions. This is what renowned author, Jim Aitchison, calls a personal cage.

A personal cage is composed of all the experiences, knowledge, morals, and ethics we gain as we grow.

These standards affect how we see and interpret every message we encounter, especially advertisements and sales pitches.

Building your personal cage happens throughout your whole life.

If the bars of the cage act as filters, find relevant messages that pass through these and sell your sales presentation ideas.

The Five Tricks

The Signpost

Signpost messages signify changes in certain kinds of behavior.

As Aitchison cites in his book, Cutting Edge Advertising, the Pepsi vs. Coca-Cola story is a classic marketing example.

When Michael Jackson became Pepsi’s new icon, they positioned themselves as the drink of the next generation. This led to many Coke drinkers permitting themselves to change those standards.

When Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone’s third quarter market share in 2008, he signified that times were changing for the US smartphone market.

Within the first 90 days of its shipment, he showed the iPhone as a potential investment for customers and business partners alike.

A Newsflash

Introducing a new product or service in an ad pitch is challenging for any startup company, especially product launch advertisements.

Position your message as a piece of news, like how Jobs introduced the iPhone in 2007.

First, he built interest by announcing that Apple reinvented a new product type.

Then, he briefly explained the current competition’s weaknesses: fixed keypads and limited functions.

It was only after all this that he introduced what made the iPhone different and showed the actual product with its full touchscreen capabilities.

This generates strong interest in your offer and highlights what makes you different and more appealing from other brands.

A Message of Support

People always look for something to rationalize an emotional need.

Will people buy an expensive sports car to enhance their personal image?

Will a company invest in a health insurance program to let employees feel that their well-being matters?

Make clients feel that they’re understood. This matches their behavior (in this case, investing in your proposal) with their desires and attitudes.

An Existing Standard of the Client

Since your message is consistent with what your audience already believes in, they’re more likely to respond if you give something that reinforces their beliefs.

Citing CreditUnion’s correspondence with Kraft CEO, Robert K. Deromedi, Demand Media’s Vanessa Cross discusses the mechanics of values-based marketing, particularly its customer-centric nature.

Kraft wanted to reach out to parents who believed in giving their kids a proper meal, so the company pulled out their junk food advertising to establish credibility with their intended customers.

Shared Experiences

Like the way TED Talk speakers relate their presentations to personal experiences, offering another person’s perspective sells your message.

Some experiences mirror your own, even at a conceptual level. This includes being plagued with restrictive problems then solving it intuitively.

Look into your company’s product or service history. Did someone have a eureka moment after a long observation? Did someone experience something that led to developing what you sell?

Everything has an interesting story behind it. Your sales pitch is no exception.

Everyone has something to dream about: a new house, a better car, a more luxurious lifestyle, etc.

Everyone wants something, especially your clients. Make your sales pitch interesting enough to pass through your clients’ standards.

Want to know more about using these five tricks more effectively? Hire SlideGenius, your presentation partner, to help you out.

References

5 TED Talk Secrets for Persuasive PowerPoint Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed June 5, 2015.
Aitchison, Jim. Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall, 2004.
Cross, Vanessa. “The Goals of Values-Based Marketing.” Chron. Accessed June 5, 2015.

Get Back in the Game: Regain Your Sales Presentation Skills

It’s challenging to get back on your feet after losing your touch. Failing to deliver is unacceptable when rejected sales pitches result in lost profits.

Humans are prone to mistakes and these happen with sales presentations, too. You might trip, lose your touch, and wonder how you even got there in the first place.

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While there’s no set timetable for recovery or a rock-solid formula to regaining your edge, there are three factors to assess if you want to get back in the game:

What defined your style?

Over time, presenters develop their own personal brand. These define you as a presenter.

Remember which presentation skills worked for you. Review your old PowerPoint sales presentations and identify what made them work.

Were your slide designs simplistic?

Did you share any relevant stories from personal experience? Did you connect to your audience with shared beliefs?

Find answers by looking at your past performances. Know your style, take notes on what you can improve on, and start practicing again.

How can you make yourself relevant?

Look at how successful brands sell their products through advertising.

According to Interbrand group chief executive, Chuck Brymer, effective branding techniques define what a business stands for.

Coke is a refreshing drink, Nike is for sporty go-getters, etc. They understand what their customers want and adjust their ads to stay relevant in the market.

As presenters, you also represent your company’s brand.

How you do your sales pitch reflects how your company does business with others, whether you speak professional or casually. You embody what your company stands for, so bank on those beliefs to re-establish a connection with your clients.

How can you rebuild credibility?

Successful companies stay that way is because they never compromise their core beliefs.

As cited in Jim Aitchison’s book, Cutting Edge Advertising, Avis consistently positioned its message as the number two brand for car rentals. This gave customers the impression of a hard-working company.

In order to stay relevant, companies continuously understand how their customers behave to pitch their products effectively. Take this same practice and apply them to your sales pitches. Remain consistent with what your company stands for and understand how these can relate with what your clients believe in. This builds up that relationship with promises and trust.

Regaining your edge shouldn’t be limited to these three factors. Keep practicing and trying out new ways to make yourself unique.

Focus on how you want your listeners to see you and what they’d miss if you quit.

To get that edge, call a presentation partner to help you out. All it takes is fifteen minutes.

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References

Aitchison, J. (2004). Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print For Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore: Prentice Hall.
Brymer, Chuck. “WHAT MAKES BRANDS GREAT?Marketing Magazine. Accessed May 11, 2015.
Sales Presentation Skills: Stay Relevant to Pitch Ideas.” SlideGenius, Inc. May 11, 2015. Accessed May 15, 2015.