No one wants to be forgettable on purpose. If you give forgettable presentations, then no one is going to buy your idea, product or service, right? A boring presentation doesn’t just cost you a sale. Think about how much time you put in, just to get in front of a prospect to present. And don’t forget all the research you’ve done, the preparation, your travel time and follow up. So, let’s not be forgettable. If you can make a difference and update your communication with a few easy changes, it only makes sense to do it.
“How can I change my snore-inducing presentations?” you say.
If you are doing any or all of the following, see what to do instead:
Do you think you need bunches of slides in your presentation? Do you just open up PowerPoint, start typing and then figure out pictures to go with them? Is your motto, the more slides the better?
Do this instead: Focus on creating your message first by writing down all the points you want to get across. Edit your list, and then just keep the keepers. Three main ideas is a good rule of thumb. Now, create any slides or visual aids you want to use based on this edited list. No need to have a slide or visual aid for every thought. Give your audience a break and speak authentically without any props — they will love you for it. Remember, you drive the presentation, not the slides.
Maybe you researched every possible detail about your own company and its origins. Do you then painstakingly write out all the bullet points about your fantastic product or service … because, who isn’t interested?
Do this instead: Remember WIIFM, or “What’s In It For Me?” Unless something benefits your prospect, they don’t care; and you’ve lost the opportunity to get their attention within the first few moments. With the internet, they probably know your company info already. Use this time instead to make it all about them. What are you bringing that will benefit them specifically, based on their needs?
Perhaps you include all features, bells and whistles of your product or service in your presentation. They are all so important that you can’t leave out a single one, right?
Do this instead: Stop now. Don’t go any further! Focus on a limited number of features that will directly impact your customer’s current situation. What do you offer that will address their need or pain? That’s where their interest lies. Ask yourself: How will this feature affect challenges they face in reaching their goals?
Do you practice by reading over your notes to yourself several times and then think you are ready to go?
Do this instead: Hold on friend. Words never sound the same spoken out loud as they do in your head. They fumble as they tumble out of your mouth. Stand up and practice out loud several times, until you feel you can convey with passion and engage/connect with your audience. You will be glad you did.
So, what’s the real cost of a boring presentation? Your sale, your reputation and your confidence. There is no reason to give a boring presentation when a few changes can make all the difference between being forgettable and being memorable. Choose memorable!
As owner and president of PresentingPlus! LLC, Kate Tunison helps clients develop confidence and skills as public speakers and business communicators. Based in Alpharetta, PresentingPlus! Works with clients in the Atlanta area and nationwide. Contact Tunison at www.presentingplus.com.