What Can You Learn From Poor Sales Presentations?


Why are so many sales presentations considered poor? Resembling an inane adjective league, poor sales presentations are typically branded as boring, tedious, dull, uninspiring, lifeless and limp.

While this sort of descriptive list may ring true, it hardly cuts to the heart of the matter - which is why

Why was the poor sales presentation so boring and tedious? What did the poor presenter do - specifically - to make it dull, uninspiring, lifeless and limp? 

Labels don’t help you learn from the poor performance or encourage you to produce a better performance yourself when you next have the opportunity. Key to learning from the mistakes of others is the ability to recognise behaviours and their impact.

So, take text-heavy slides. Did they make the poor sales presentation tedious? Did the poor presenter read aloud words that appeared on the screen in a particularly uninspiring way? Perhaps the poor presenter remained motionless for the entire presentation, making the whole experience feel lifeless. 

Being able to identify behaviours and their effects is a practical way to learn from presentations (good and bad). Using the above examples, you could improve your next sales presentation by: reducing on-slide text, avoiding a read-aloud scenario where text is used on slides and making a considerable effort to move around a little on stage.

Presentations are performances and the key to successful performances is preparation. The key to successful preparation, however, is having a goal – knowing what you want to achieve. For sales presentations, that amounts to being able to communicate clearly the reasons as to why your client should buy from you. Once this succinct message is clear in your mind, practice and rehearsal will ensure that your goal properly escalates to an effective performance.

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