Time to Ditch the Pitch
Welcome to this Two Minute Sales Tip with Tim. Today I want to talk about sales presentations. As a presentation coach, I get the unique opportunity each and every year to sit through literally hundreds of different sales presentations, and most of them aren’t very good. I think the number one reason most presentations fall short of the target is because the sales rep or the sales executive didn’t have a plan or a blueprint or a process or a roadmap, if you will, for organizing their ideas.
Here’s what happens, we have all these different ideas from all these different sources so I’m going to take this slide and this slide and this bit of data and I throw it all together in this bastardized deck, and then when I get up to deliver my presentation there’s no flow. There’s no beginning, no middle, no end. So as you watch people present this kind of random information, it’s pretty obvious they’re not convinced. Ladies and gentlemen if you’re going to be convincing, then you yourself need to be convinced. So my encouragement is to get a plan.
I’m going to share with you today the three pieces that I think are common to all great presentations. Piece number one is you start with what. What is the situation? What is the scenario? What is the opportunity? What is the challenge? When you talk about what you’re really directing your energy towards the customer’s environment.
If you want your presentation to be convincing, then you better be convinced!
Most presentations start with the rep or the executive talking about themselves and talking about their company and talking about the number of employees and the types of clients they work with and different awards they’ve seen, and if I see one more map of all the little red dots saying these are all our offices, I’m probably going to get ill. Your customer doesn’t want to hear about you to start with. What they want to hear about is that you understand what is going on. So start your presentation with, “Hey guys, this is what we think the current situation is,” and explain that to them.
The second piece which you transition to then is how. Here’s how we attack that issue. Here’s how we leverage that opportunity. Here’s how we minimize your litigation. Talk about the action. Talk about your experience and your expertise that when you see the what this is how we make it better.
Then last but not least you can talk about why. Why we are the right people to partner with. Here’s the deal. If you talk about what and they understand that you understand the what and then you talk about how and they’re like that makes great sense, the why is going to flow and it’s going to stick. Look at it this way. Here’s my little trick to remember how to organize presentation.
If you get ill tonight and you go to the emergency room because you’re not feeling well, do you want that attending physician to come in and talk about why you’re in the right ER or why you’re at the right hospital or why he’s the best doctor. No, when you walk in what you want to hear is what. What is going on with me? Start your presentation by talking about what. The next thing you would want to hear from that doctor is how. How are you going to make me better? How are you going to make this pain go away? Last but not least, maybe. Maybe you want to hear about why am I in the right hospital? Why am I being taken care of by the right doctor?
Start with what, transition to how, finish with why. My concluding thought today, remember at the end of the day a mediocre idea presented with passion goes much farther than a great idea that inspires no one. Ladies and Gentlemen, thanks for watching. My name is Tim Wackel.
If you enjoyed this, you might be interested in my FREE live webinar Anatomy of a Lousy Pitch that I’ll be hosting on April 11, 2017. Learn more here.