Have you polished your presentation skills? Or, are you like many agents–just going to the door and starting ‘naturally’. We’re all presenters: Any time we’re in front of two or two thousand, our goal is to persuade the audience to our point of view. However, most of the time, we just get in front of people and say whatever we think of first. That lack of attention to presentation organization leads to some big presentation mistakes, and costs us ‘sales’. Instead of stumbling through a presentation, why not organize it to grab their attention, persuade them to your way of thinking, and motivate them to action?
Grab Their Attention in the Opening
Have you thought about your opening? Or, are you nervously standing at the sellers’ door, worried about what you’re going to say? Are you hiding in your office because you dread doing that sales meeting? When we haven’t organized our presentation, we come up with some really boring, off-putting openings, like:
I won’t take much of your time, but
We have a lot to cover today
We won’t get through the outline
I know you don’t want to listen, but
I’m not really prepared
You just open your presentation book, point to the pretty pages, and say, “here’s a keybox” (I’m not kidding. I’ve seen it….)
Great openings, yes? Yet, we’ve heard them dozens of times. You don’t have to settle for whatever comes ‘naturally’. Instead, make your openings
A Middle that Educates your ‘Audience’ to your Point of View
In the middle of your presentation, add those stories, statistics, and visuals that support your point of view. By the way, as you create that presentation, jot down your point of view. If you’re doing a presentation to sellers, one of the major objectives of your presentation is to persuade them to your listing price point of view.
Why use Visuals?
There are two reasons to use visuals in your presentation:
We believe what we see
We retain the information much longer
As you organize your presentation, ask yourself:
What are the main, and frequently, unspoken objections my ‘audience’ will have? How do I educate them to show them the reasoning behind my point of view?
The Ending: Back to the Beginning
Have you thought about your wrap-up? Or, like many presenters, does your ending sound like this?
Well, that’s all. What do you think?
We’re out of time. Thank you. I hope you’ll list with me
I don’t have time to close.
I couldn’t get to much of the material, but you can read it
In fact, even the most professional presenters frequently have trouble with their endings. One of the main reasons is that they run out of time. Another is that they haven’t thought the ending through.
How to Do a Stunning Ending
Crafting an effecting ending is the second most important part of your presentation. (The first is the opening). To craft a great ending,
Go back to your beginning opening theme
Summarize the benefits of going ahead with you/take action
Motivate your ‘audience’ to take action
A Great Presentation is Crafted like a Pop Song
As a musician, I know that all pop tunes are constructed with this format:
This is known in the music business as the ABA format. Think of your favorite pop tune: Hum the beginning. Think of the end. They’re alike, right? It’s the middle—known as the ‘bridge’—that is the humdinger. It wanders all around. Your persuasive presentation should be crafted like that pop tune:
A A compelling start (think Billy Joel, Neil Diamond, etc.)
B An interesting, developed middle, with stories, statistics
A Back to that theme, with a motivating ending
Now, you’re all set to craft a great listing or buyer presentation, great recruiting meeting or sales meeting, or awesome product/service presentation to any audience.
P. S. Practice!
Many more tips on presentations and presentation skills are in my new resource, Knock Their Socks Off: Tips to Make your Best Presentation Ever.