from NASP 6/22/13 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
In my role I get exposed to lots of Presentations & Pitches – so I thought I’d offer you some pointers for when you next present. Some of these tips seem obvious (but sadly not practiced enough) and others less so. So, whether it’s a one minute presentation at a networking event, or a 1 hour pitch for a life-changing contract, pick out the ones that will help you achieve your personal success.
· Preparation begins early! Never leave it until the last minute. Never ‘wing it’ – it shows! Research your facts, stats, case studies – anything that will help make your pitch more engaging and informative.
· Practice. When was the last time you practised? Did you Video yourself? How was your timing? Who has the expertise that could watch you? What habits should you eliminate? What should you do more of? How can you make your style more engaging?
· Get in the Mood. Nerves are natural, but you can take steps to minimize them. Ask yourself, “How much value can I give today? If you can, talk to the audience informally before the start of the presentation – it will help you relax. Remind yourself you’re there to give them the benefit of your experience, knowledge and expertise. And remember – although these might be hardened professionals, no-one will be thinking “I hope this guy is rubbish”. They may not buy from you, but they want you to succeed on a personal level.
· Non-Verbal Communication. It’s true that most of your communication will not be with your words. Your audience will notice how you’re dressed. They will notice your facial expressions or not the words you’re speaking. They will notice your body language. Use a range of voice tones to keep your content fresh.
· Content. A one-way Pitch is likely to work less & less nowadays. It really is better if you’re NOT doing most of the talking – it’s just not engaging enough. So, even if the meeting is billed as a presentation by you, open up a two way dialogue early (ie, Before I start say, “It’s alright to ask questions during my presentation” The less they expect this, the more impact you will have – providing you carefully craft those early open questions to give you exactly what you need.
· Structure. You’ll need to manage the presentation so that you include the following…
a) Clarity – who you are and what you do
b) Credibility – set out why you’re worth listening to (“you’ll benefit from 18 years experience in the xyz sector”)
c) Their pains – home in on the problems they have
d) Your solutions – what you are bringing to the table
e) Pre-empt their objections
f) The next step – How do they want to go forward
Be sure to talk in “You” language – for example avoid “we do this”, instead “you will get”
· Questions & Answers. Many presenters ask for Q & A’s right before the end. This leaves them vulnerable as, if someone asks something distracting or even damaging, this might be the lasting impression your audience has. Put your Q & A’s near to, but not at the end of the session – then you can answer them and go on to conclude the presentation by hitting them with your powerful Closing Message. Now go for it !!!
Comments: This give you good ideas? Any you could add?