Did your buyers react to your sales presentation or did your story put them to sleep?

Often I see lifeless presentations missing vital information. One word headings, bulleted lists, and standalone charts do not get the attention of your audience. If you’re relying on verbal communication to satisfy your audience, think again.

Your sales or marketing presentations have to influence your audience and actively motivate them to accept your proposal. Understanding your audience better and developing targeted motivational elements is the starting point of well crafted proposal and presentation strategies.

When I first began using this attention getting strategy I assisted business leaders with an international consulting company to come up with a story for an influential quality campaign. We worked through presentation strategies and came up with a prize winning approach for the business unit.

I have continued to refine this process over the years to develop presentation strategies that work for sales pitches, marketing communications, and even proposal solicitations in any industry with great success.

Let me share with you these five vital elements to design acceptance strategies that will get your audience’s attention and help you win new business.

  1. What. What is your presentation subject?
  2. Who. Who is the presenter, and who is the target audience?
  3. Response. What is the action or attitude desired from target audience?
  4. Why. A) Hidden Motivator. Why should your audience react as you desire? What is the hidden motivation that we should appeal to – is it fear, greed, power, or sex? Do not include it, but use it to help develop the open motivator.
    Why. B) Open Motivator. Then, openly consider what you can realistically offer that in some way supports the hidden motivator. To compare with Why A, is your audience reaction going to be concern, desire, ability, or action?
  5. Win. Define acceptance, specifying the size of the motivating benefit (4B) that will move the audience.

I suggest collecting as much qualifying information in steps 3 through 5. As you craft the acceptance strategy, you will have reliable information to work with.

Then, to formulate your motivating thesis statement, put together these elements:

what + verb + win + why-B

Here is an example how to formulate the main thesis statement for a blue jeans sales presentation to potential retail buyers.

Brand X blue jeans + rank + highest among college students + for superior style.

Try telling a good story next time. You can add visuals of your target market, as shown in the second image of students wearing your brand of blue jeans, and create a lead in with the main thesis. You will surely get your audience’s attention. Then show your statistics and prove the thesis statement.

Claudio Baba/iStockphoto. Titled by Ann M Augustine.

Contact me for assistance in facilitating a distinctive attention-getting strategy to help you win new business.

Adapted from Dag I. Knudsen & Associates, Inc. presentation techniques