… continued from last week …
Step 3. REHEARSE/PRACTISE YOUR PRESENTATION
Practice and rehearsals are the parents of genius. If you want to be a master of sales presentations, you must practise and rehearse before every presentation. Don’t get so used to your presentations to the point of complacency.
Among other reasons, rehearsing and practising will help you prevent embarrassment, help with timing, help uncover black spots, anticipate likely questions, prepare responses to questions and objections, prepare for the unknown and build your confidence. Above all, a rehearsed presentation runs more smoothly.
Once you’ve created your presentation, practise it. Practise in front of a mirror, deliver the presentation to colleagues and run over your content, structure, and information until you have mastered it.
Step 4. DEFINE YOUR PERSONAL BUY-IN FACTOR
Why do you care that the prospect buys your product or service? If you were the prospect, and knowing what you know about your offer, would you buy the product? If your answer is yes, what are the features or benefits that will make you buy? What is the prospect losing because he/she does not use your product or service?
For your sales presentation to be real, you must be truly convinced that the offer you are proposing will really add value to the prospect. This conviction will engender motivation and stimulate your passion. Guess what, conviction, motivation and passion are infectious. You will transfer your personal buy-in to the prospect.
Step 5: ESTABLISH RAPPORT
The first thing you must win in every presentation is the heart or mind share of the prospect or customer. Winning the mind share enhances your chances of winning the wallet or market share. This is the emotional bit of your presentation. This is where you adopt the style of the motivator using your charm and charisma.
Here are some tips for establishing rapport:
- Remember that the first impression anybody will have of you will be greatly influenced by your appearance. Your dressing and grooming must be immaculate and suitable for the occasion and audience. Your dressing should project your profession and accentuate your personality.
- However, you should also apply cultural humility in your appearance and comportment. Cultural humility means subsuming your culture to the pervading and dominant culture of your environment. It’s about aligning yourself to the ways and etiquettes of your environment without compromising your core values, beliefs and principles.
- Once you step into the room, greet the person or per- sons there. And make sure that your greeting is loud enough for everybody to hear you. If you are already seated in the room and the prospect walks in, stand up and greet.
- Eye contact. Make eye contact when you are greeting and exchanging pleasantries. Plant a slight smile on your face.
- Don’t stretch your hand for a handshake unless the prospect offers the hand. Shake firmly without wrenching.
- Express gratitude. Thank them for inviting you to make the presentation. Remember they have other alternatives, and could have chosen to buy from your competitors without giving you the opportunity to pitch.
- Pay compliments. Say something nice (but genuine) about the prospect or customer, about the company, about their achievements or activities or even about the layout of the office. Please make sure the compliment is genuine and say it like you mean it. Make it short.
- Introduce yourself. Introduce yourself by name, designation/ role and company in that order. So, you could say, “My name is Jedidiah, Jedidiah Peniel (notice that you said the first name twice), I am the Managing Director, XYZ Company… However, if you go for a presentation with a colleague and you are leading the team, it will be more appropriate to introduce your colleague (name, designation/role) before introducing yourself.
- Say something about your past success.
- Express your faith in their ability to use the outcome of the presentation
Establishing rapport using the above elements will help you relax and make you likeable. The stiffness and tautness usually associated with making a sales presentation will evaporate.
… to be continued …