Written by Sean McPheat |
You’re conducting an online sales presentation to a prospective new customer…
Just how can you increase their engagement and keep them interested – and how can virtual meetings and virtual presentations achieve this?
This really comes down to a number of key points. I will outline these below, but owing to the detail and complexity that each possess I will hone in on the main points only.
The biggest reasons why demonstrating products and services fail is down to several important elements:
– The Message – poorly thought out, not logical and too much information
– The Deck / Presentation – poorly designed too wordy and lacks impact.
– The Delivery – monotonic voices that lack inspiration, belief or passion
– A lack of understanding about the features and functions of the meeting tool being used. WebEx, Google Hangout, Fuze etc…
When designing a message to engage your audience you must take the perspective of what does the customer need / want to know in order to make a buying decision, namely:
Having observed this on so many occasions, if the answer to any of the above questions is in doubt by the customer, the chances are you won’t get the sale.
This is why the structure, its relevance to the audience and the language used is so vitally important.
So what is a bad presentation?
A bad presentation, is filled with worthless and meaningless C.L.I.P.A.R.T (Crass Little Inserted Pictures Always Rubbish and Trite). Are filled with bullets, are dull and boring, lack personality and deliver far too much information.
Good presentations are incredibly visual, and use what is known as Visual Cognitive Dissonance or VCD. Visual because the content is highly relevant to the audience and visually tells a story to a point, cognitive because each slide makes no sense until the speaker or presenter narrates over the top of it, and dissonance relates to the intrigue surrounding the message or story that the slide tells you which initially is incomplete, hence you feel the need to know more.
Add to this the correct language, presentation style, animations and relevant message and you’ve got the makings of a first class presentation that engages the audience and closes deals.
You need to be asking the right questions and seeking the right answers.
Presenting to an audience on a product or service that you either have faith in or believe in, will speak volumes in a very short space of time, in as little as 30 – 40 seconds in fact. Your opening statement in an online meeting has to show confidence, belief and credibility. If it doesn’t you will for the remainder of that meeting or presentation be on the back foot and fighting a losing battle.
So if you are delivering a presentation using an online tool, go in with a script. However, delivering it in this scripted style, every time not only grabs the audiences’ attention, but it tells the audience that what they are about to hear has been thought through, considered and planned meticulously.
Planning, preparation, as well as rehearsal, mean everything. You have to know what is coming next in your presentation upon every single click and yes, on occasion people lose their way. So, here are some useful tips to help you:
One of the key differentiators for any individual presenting is knowing the message you wish to convey and how you are going to use the features and functions within the chosen tool Cisco WebEx EventCenter™ or Google Hangout for example, to best effect in order to convey it.
Do I wish to capture feedback from the audience using Chat?
Do I want to use Q&A?
Do I want to use specifically designed slides that promote interaction?
Do I want to use video?
Do I want to share my screen, an application or document?
Most providers will offer training to all clients free of charge.
So, knowing your virtual meeting product inside and out is so important to the delivery of a smooth and compelling presentation. Become the best that you can be, as poor experiences will hinder your sales pitch.
When you understand all of the core controls, as a presenter, your levels of both comfort and confidence will grow exponentially. It’s important however, to set yourself a reasonable timeline to learn these new skills. Don’t try to rush it. These skills are not something that you simply pick up overnight they will require some time and effort.
Presenting is an art. Presenting online is a science, by that I refer to the fact that it requires a certain approach and methodology because of all of the elements involved. There is no set formula but if there was then I would recommend.
E = M C2 Where E (Efficiency) is equal to Meetings * Conferencing Squared.
The more of them that you host the better you become.
Improve your online sales presentation skills…
If you’re looking to take your virtual presentation skills onto the next level have you ever thought about taking some Sales Courses Online or attending a Virtual Sales Training Webinar. Both options will provide you with the skills and the techniques to improve your sales performance. We also have a very useful online programme which is delivered to your email over a 2 week period – it’s aimed at beginners and will provide you with 9 useful Sales Techniques.
Originally published: 12 April, 2020
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