There’s nothing quite like a half-hour in a warm meeting room, with the lights turned down and the gentle hum of the projector whirring as it unveils yet another tedious Powerpoint slide, to help you catch up on 40 winks.
Come on… admit it; who hasn’t borne witness to one of those ‘death by Powerpoint’ pitches, where the supplier’s soporific voice is the least snooze-inducing element of the whole presentation?
Tiny, illegible font, unintelligible graphics, dodgy ClipArt motifs and garish colour choices – these are all common Powerpoint mistakes that can lose a salesperson a pitch, regardless of how good the actual product or service is.
My tips for a top-notch presentation?
- Keep them simple. Avoid too many slides and limit transitions and builds. (‘Slide rush’ at the end of a presentation looks amateurish, and can prevent your salespeople from making their key points.)
- Keep bullet-points and text to a minimum, and choose a slick, professional font like Gill Sans.
- Lose the ClipArt and don’t even think about cartoons. High-quality graphics are the order of the day, but remember that ‘busy’ presentations will divert audience attention from content.
- Use charts to present facts and figures and increase impact – but make sure they can be interpreted by the layperson.
- Use colour carefully. If your team member is presenting in a darkened room, use a dark background and light text. In ambient light, use dark text on a light background.
- Have a copy of the presentation printed for the prospect to take away with them.
- Make sure your salesperson talks to the prospect, not the slides. They’re pitching him/her, not the projector screen!
- Try eLearning course 'Winning Presentations' to deliver a high impact presentation.
The challenge for you, in a situation that requires presenting, is how can you present your products or services so that your customer or client absorbs the key messages you want them to? What do you do to catch your prospects attention? Tailor make your presentation, capture their attention with unique ideas?
By Lorna Leck, Managing Director of The Sales Activator® Ltd. For further learning why not try the Sales Activator's eLearning course 'Winning Presentations'? It is designed to benefit all levels in Sales and Service, and is packed with useful tips and exercises to help you deliver a high impact presentation.