Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Presentations to Clients, Consumers and Buyers - useful checklist

Eleanor Roosevelt advised

 “ Learn from others mistakes You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.” 
Back in the day - 2014 You tube went viral with postings of American film director and producer at the Consumer Electronic exhibition in a promotional interview for Samsung.

The occasion was a selling pitch to promote the new ultra high definition 105 in screen TV on which was to be shown a clip from his new film in the Transformer franchise.

Be in no doubt - This was a sales presentation

Unfortunately the Teleprompter broke down.

I guess it was made all the more embarrassing by the over hyped language of the interviewer and the scripted response on the Teleprompter.

(Entrance on to stage to loud  music ( like a heralding fanfare))

Mr Bay : How is everyone?  My job, as a director . I get to dream for a living.( looks to interviewer)

Interviewer :          Michael , you are known for such unbelievable action, what inspires you ? How do you come up with such unbelievable ideas ?

Mr Bay:  I create visual worlds that are so beyond everyone’s normal life experiences and Hollywood is a place…

Like many I suspect, we have seen such commercial ‘interviews’ at exhibitions but had not realised the dialogue was on a Teleprompter.

Of course the Teleprompter turned out to be not only the prompt but the prop  ( the support) to the whole sales pitch upon which it depended.

Well we may not all have to do live interviews at exhibitions but we should always be wary relying on technology, whether it’s a PowerPoint slide show, an audio/video conference presentation even a presentation over the phone and have a contingency.

Cue cards, PowerPoint handout (3 slides per sheet handout), some notes  will help us keep calm and carry on should the pesky tech let us down. Don't forget to learn your nutshell sell

 It’s why Flipchart pad is so handy to have to hand as a belt-and-braces contingency.

Perhaps we should take note Movie Actor, Harrison Ford’s thoughts

Sometimes I try to improve the language, the lines, or the delivery, but I don't ad-lib because I think that makes it really hard for everybody else involved.”

At CES 2014 it was hard on Michael Bay, for his interviewer, for Samsung and their new product launch for the 105 in TV and also all involved in the new Transformer film.

Below is a useful check list to help avoid such calamities ourselves and reduce the stress so that we won’t need to leave the stage but can carry on.

You tube clip

Nutshell Sell

How to plan and prepare presentations to Client buying group
Useful Check list

1. Investigation and research
Client knowledge and corporate priorities
Timing and location

2. Planning
Team selection (best to have a trainer to show off the actual ‘product’ provided you can get the right one)
What is our Differentiated Value Proposition?
Business/financial case
Pre-presentation contact with audience (if allowed)
In-house ‘champions’
Clarifying objectives
Audience motivators and drivers

3. Design
Structure of the presentation: opening/message/motivation/close
Visual aids (including but not restricted to PowerPoints)
Materials to hand out or leave with them (or send post presentation)
Who presents what?
Policy on questions – and pre-planning answers to expected questions
Plan A and Plan B (contingency plan for change of direction)
Appealing to different personality types
Appealing to different functions
Seeing and listening from the customer’s viewpoint

4. Rehearsal
Dress code
Logistics (set-up, materials, name cards etc)
‘Hand overs’
Questions and challenges expected
Fall back, contingencies should the equipment fail Avoid the Michael Bay experience
Have a ‘new’ person watch
Revisions to plan?

5. Presentation
Travelling, timing, getting there early to relax and maybe get in to the room early ?
Setting up and getting organised (be prepared to have them sitting silently watching you and eating lunch !)
Effective introductions (including business cards)
Strong opening (to win attention)
Clear message (to emphasise DVP and business benefits)
Audience motivation (may be different for different people)
Powerful close (leaves lasting impression)
Handling questions, interruptions, challenges
‘Debating’ issues (when to do this and when not to)
Using interest peaks to maintain attention
Audience involvement (or not)
Voice projection, body language, pace, variety
Time keeping
Organised management of questions
Staying flexible (Plan A and Plan B)
Management of materials
Using the customer’s language
Customer references and confidence builders
ROI and financial benefits
Making your ‘exit’ positive and efficient

6. Follow up
Post presentation discussions with your team
Courteous follow-up communication
Delivering on any promises made (e.g. more information)
Supplying summary of presentation, copies of PowerPoints,
confirmation of your offer
Feedback from in-house champion(s) if possible
Receiving and reacting to the customer’s decision
Learning from feedback and the decision (either way)

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