By Jill Huselton
Everyone wants a sales silver bullet — that elusive equation of behaviors that will propel the average salesperson to the level of slayer. A little internet searching will give you a long list of competencies, but let’s face facts: There’s no one way to make a sale. The only silver bullet is the capability to clearly demonstrate to the customer that you care about their needs.
Personality traits aside, how do successful salespeople demonstrate they care within the confines of a sales pitch? Here are four tips to delivering a presentation that enters the realm of sales greatness.
It Starts with Relationship.
Research demonstrates that top sellers focus on building deeper relationships with fewer customers, as opposed to casting a wider net of shallower engagement. And the key to building relationships? Good listening. As Enterprise Rent-A-Car CEO Andy Taylor told Inc, “The people who are the most successful are the ones who listen most closely to the customer. We follow the two ears, one mouth rule here.”
Listening to the customer facilitates the identification of specific pain points — and the positioning of your product as the solution. According to sales expert Grant Cardone, “Great sales people are building a business, not just trying to make a sale. When you think beyond a sale, you’re going to get other people’s attention much more easily.” In other words, knowing your audience translates into delivering real, actionable advice.
Now, Craft Your Content.
Concrete solutions are not only appealing to an audience, but also help move it further along the buyer’s journey. Content is the tool to communicate those solutions. So what’s the best way to get the message across?
As Aaron Weyenberg, UX lead at Ted Talks, urges, “Think about your slides last.” Instead, plan your main message and supporting points. The presentation should stand alone, like a well-structured story. Once you have practiced and timed your story, start thinking about designing slides. “The presentation needs to stand on its own; the slides are just something you layer over it to enhance the listener experience,” says Weyenberg. And it also goes without saying (almost) to shed excessive bullet points and complicated charts that leave the eye swimming in text.
Once you do start designing, keep efforts focused with a content questionnaire:
- Is it on target? Does it help tell the story?
- Can I transmit the same meaning using fewer words — or an image?
- Are claims backed by rigorous research?
- Is it visually compelling?
Speaking of visuals, don’t skimp on the graphics. Use high quality images. Strive for harmony between slides, but don’t get carried away. Think of your slides as different relatives sitting around the family table. Weyenberg advises creating one style for the meaty slides and another style for transitions between topics. It might be as simple as flipping the color scheme, but it will give much-needed texture and provide a visual cue that the presentation is shifting to a new topic.
Make Sure to Master Your Tech.
Especially for an online sales presentation, demonstrating proficiency will set everyone at ease and help facilitate a great exchange. Practice, people! Make sure you’re familiar with the online meeting tool you are using so you can easily demonstrate your application and show your video. Record yourself and play it back to scan for weak points and choppy transitions. Get to know shortcuts for important features like record, mute and screen sharing. If you’re using video, keep the camera at eye-level and double check the background before going live.
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Follow Up and Follow Through.
We’re back to managing the relationship again. Be conscientious. Do what you say you’re going to do. Make sure to share relevant collateral along with a link to the recorded meeting. Answer any questions and restate action items. And own the conversation by setting a date for a follow up meeting.
Ready to kill it with caring? Go get ‘em. If you need help mastering your tech, be sure to check out our Support Center or contact our award-winning Customer Care team, available 24/7 at (844) 844-1322.