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Are your sales presentations feeling a little stale? Do your prospects have glazed-over looks on their faces as you share your pitch? Are you seeing declining conversion rates? If so, it might be time to shake things up and try a new approach. To help you get started, here we share eight great ideas for sales presentations.

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Ditch the Text for Your Sales Presentations

Is your presentation jam packed with facts, figures, and walls of text? If so, this might be too much for the prospect to process. A long sales presentation could cause them to be distracted from the most important messages in your pitch. 

Instead, try a variation of your normal sales pitch, wherein you focus on images, graphs, and charts instead of text. Verbally explain what each part of the presentation means to the prospect. However, don’t bombard them with chunks of text or bullet points.

This approach can make it much easier for the prospect to focus on what you are saying. That’s because they won’t be trying to read the text and simultaneously listen to what you are saying.

Make the Pitch Conversational

The best way to fully obtain a prospect’s full attention is to engage them in a conversation. Therefore, throughout your sales presentation, ask them a series of questions and really focus on their responses. Reply in a relaxed and conversational way to learn more about their goals, problems, or missed opportunities.

If you are pitching to a business, ask them about their current challenges or the state of their industry. Your goal is to start a meaningful conversation with a focus on helping the prospect in some way. 

Ideally, the conversation will help you understand how your product or service could be useful to the prospect. Eventually, you can lead the discussion to what you are selling and help the prospect understand how your offer could help them specifically.

Help Your Prospect Identify Problems and Opportunities

A traditional sales pitch uses a linear approach. It usually involves the salesperson telling the prospect about the challenges they face. Then the salesperson offers up a solution. Alternatively, the salesperson may identify an opportunity, then explain how their product or service helps the prospect take advantage of it.

This approach only works if the prospect truly understands the problem or opportunity being discussed. One way to ensure this happens is to get the prospect to discover the problem or opportunity themselves. Don’t tell the business owner that they have a problem with productivity. Instead, guide the buyer to that conclusion by telling a story in your sales presentation. Or guide the discussion toward that end in another way.

Because they have identified the problem or opportunity themselves, they are much more likely to act on it.

Significantly Shorten Your Pitch

Have you ever heard a potential buyer say, “Gee, I wish that sales pitch was longer”?

No? 

That’s because your prospects are typically busy people who have many other things they would prefer to be doing.

Therefore, go through your sales presentation and remove any material that is not absolutely essential. Don’t bother listing every single feature your product has or detailing every advantage that a purchase provides. 

Instead, focus on the factors that really matter to the specific prospect that you are delivering the pitch to. By shortening your pitch and delivering a simpler message, you can retain the prospect’s full attention and give them a clearer understand of what is on offer.

Provide Your Pitch in Other Formats

Traditionally, a salesperson would meet a prospect before delivering a pitch and hand them a business card or brochure. Instead of taking this somewhat outdated approach, make use of the available technologies.

Start by emailing the prospect a copy of your sales presentation deck before the meeting. This way, they can review your slides beforehand to gain an understanding of what you are offering. 

You would be surprised by how many prospects are willing to go through a sales presentation beforehand. If they do take this opportunity, you can completely skip the slides during your presentation. Instead, you can simply have a conversation with the prospect. And you can focus on their questions, goals, challenges, and concerns without going through slides.

Another great option is to send the prospect a video recording of you delivering a comprehensive version of your sales pitch. Of course you should do this after the meeting has been completed. Email them a copy when you send them a thank you note. This will give them the opportunity to review your offer once more. They will be able to listen to a lengthier pitch that fully goes into the details of your offer.

Really Focus on the Prospect’s Problems in Your Sales Presentation

Highlighting a “problem” faced by the prospect then explaining how your product or service is the “solution” is a sure-fire way to gain a prospect’s interest. Unfortunately, many salespeople don’t spend enough time talking about the “problem.”

The main advantage of focusing on the problem component is that it can trigger the loss aversion instinct. This is the human tendency to prefer avoiding losses. Instead, people want to acquire equivalent gains.

Essentially, prospects are more likely to pay attention and experience a sense of urgency if you are talking about something they could be losing. Therefore, if you talk about how much money, productivity, or time a person is currently losing, they really pay attention.

Hammer home the problem with facts and figures. Highlight the problem from every conceivable angle and explain that it will only get worse if ignored.

Include a Story in Your Sales Presentation That Relates to the Prospect

Storytelling can be a very compelling tactic in a sales presentation if it is incorporated well.  The key is to identify a story that the prospect will relate to. If they see similarities between themselves and the antagonist of your tale, they will pay close attention to your words. 

Incorporate the Right Kind of Social Proof in Your Sales Presentation

Social proof can work wonders when added to a sales presentation. However, it can also cause problems if used incorrectly. Avoid rattling off the names of the big-name customers that you have worked with in the past. Instead, share some real-world facts and figures about how you helped other clients. If you can clearly demonstrate that your gadget increases worker productivity or profits by 25% by using a case study, your prospect will be eager to make a purchase.