When its time to give your next sales presentation, here are my favorite tips for delivering powerful, charismatic, and engaging sales presentations.
#1 - PLANT YOUR FEET SQUARELY ON THE FLOOR
How you hold your physical body during your sales pitch communicates a tremendous amount of information about you to your audience. Studies have shown a person will unconsciously interpret approximately 55% of the meaning of your message from physiological cues in your body position, stance, and facial expressions.
Deliver your presentation from a position of confidence. Stand with your feet squarely between your shoulders. Distribute your weight evenly between your legs, and plant your feet firmly on the ground. Keep your arms relaxed at your sides, until your are ready to make a gesture.
Shifting your weight from one leg to another communicates to the audience a lack of confidence. This comes across unconsciously in that if you were to ask someone, a typical response might be "he didn't seem like believed in his company" or "I not sure that I can trust her".
Try both the balanced and the unbalanced speaking postures right now, and see which one makes you feel more confident and ready for your next sales presentation.
#2 - GET PUMPED UP
It is your job to lead the audience. The reason they are there to get something from you. So you must lead them where you want them to go. If you want people to get excited about your product or to feel a sense of trust towards you and your company, you must first create this emotion within yourself.
How do you do this? Simple. Do whatever it takes to get yourself excited. Jump up and down. Clap your hands. Play your favorite music loud. High five your sales partner. You can do this where you won't be seen by the prospect (in your car, in the customer's stairwell, bathroom or outside the building). What do you think a rock star or an actor does to warm-up before going on stage?
The idea is to begin your presentation in an absolutely great state. Do this right and the audience will follow your where you want them to go.
Special tip: Use this technique before making important phone calls so that you are "on" when you make the call.
#3 - WARM-UP THE AUDIENCE
Another thing big rock stars do before coming out on stage is they have warm-up acts. The job of a warm-up act is to get the audience in a mood will be receptive of the main act's energy.
You can accomplish this same effect by simply playing music before you start your presentation. Many laptops have CD players these days, or you can use a boom-box. The type of music you play will depend on your audience, and the emotional state that you want to warm your audience up to. Just think about how this will set you apart from your competition's stale PowerPoint slide show.
#4 - BEGIN WITH AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION
The more rapport you have with an individual or a group, the more receptive they will be to your message. One way to build rapport with your audience is by asking questions of your audience during your first few minutes on stage.
Ask a question or two that most people can easily answer (but don't put anyone on the spot too much). Questions such as "How far did you come to get here?" and "How long have you been working in this field?" easily get conversation going and begin creating a relationship between you and your audience.
#5 - SUSTAIN EYE CONTACT WITH INDIVIDUALS
You probably know you should do this. Now here's why and how.
The more frequently you change the location of your focus, the more new information your brain is taking in. Your eyes are the visual sensory input system for your brain. Change focus fast enough and frequently enough, and you overload your brain to the point where you forget where you are at in the presentation. Aaaaggh!
Maintain your concentration on what you want to say next by fixing your visual focus for short periods of time. Do this by completing a thought or a sentence (whichever you find easier) while sustaining eye contact with one person. Move eye contact to a new person with each new thought or sentence.
© 1999-2004 Shamus Brown, All Rights Reserved.
Shamus Brown is a Professional Sales Coach and former high-tech sales pro who began his career selling for IBM. Shamus has written more than 50 articles on selling and is the creator of the popular Persuasive Selling Skills CD Audio Program. You can read more of Shamus Brown's sales tips at http://Sales-Tips.industrialEGO.com/ and you can learn more about his persuasive sales skills training at http://www.Persuasive-Sales-Skills.com/