It’s likely that you as a salesperson are responsible for having some kind of sales deck in your arsenal.
Some companies may have their marketing or sales support teams prepare these, while for most others - you’re on your own.
You should never fully rely on someone else’s idea of what’s going to work when it comes to making the final sale. Instead, be prepared to rethink and revamp how they’re being used at a moment’s notice.
The materials you have should guarantee that you will have an impact and actually aid your sales process.
Here are 5 simple ideas that will help you ensure that they do.
1. Presenting vs. Sending
First thing's first: How many of your decks do you actually present - either in person or via screenshare? Now, how many are just being sent as an email attachment for your contact to look over?
What you’re using when you’re making a live presentation should be entirely different than what you would send to someone. Making two versions will take some additional effort, but it will be worth it.
The actual deck you present should essentially contain only talking points and items that would require you to elaborate on and explain.
If you attached that deck to an email, whoever would be on the receiving end would completely miss out on any necessary commentary.
Can you imagine their confusion?
Now maybe you’ve spoken with that contact previously and they do have some necessary background, but how about anyone they forward that particular email to? It will just continue to cause confusion and potentially delay or even derail your sale.
That’s why all decks should be differentiated into those that you would speak to and those meant for being distributed without additional narration.
This crucial distinction will undoubtedly impact your success.
2. Be Clear and to the Point
Your buyer is busy. You’ve probably had trouble getting in touch with them and possibly even had meetings fall through due to constant conflicts.
So why would you ever burden them with an overstuffed, dense deck?
Whether you’re actually presenting it to them live or just emailing it, make sure the presentation has clearly stated objectives and gets to the point.
Structuring your message in a simple way by placing one idea per slide will help streamline and focus the flow of the deck. Including too much unnecessary material will only help you lose a prospect’s attention and potentially the sale.
3. Keep it Interesting
If your sales deck has slide upon slide of company background or is filled with industry jargon, you can bet many of your prospects won’t want to continue looking through it.
Making the deck about your buyer and how you intend to help, serve, or ease specific pain-points is how you’ll keep them engaged in your offering.
It’s great to include some background, especially some relevant client testimonials or success stories for example, but overall you should limit how much you talk about you and keep the focus on them.
Stop trying to sell yourself and start focusing on understanding what your buyer really wants.
4. What’s the Point?
Having a next step in mind when using a sales deck is key. If you’re presenting it live you should have an idea of what you’d like to do next.
Do you know what other information you will need to gather or verify before moving forward? Will you suggest a follow-up discussion to review and answer any questions? Or will you just be sending a proposal?
When sending a presentation via email you can include some kind of CTA, so that your prospect can easily access additional relevant information and you can gauge their interest level in a secondary way.
Knowing exactly what the point and ultimate goal of showing a prospect your sales deck is helps everyone stay on the same page and moves the sales process along quickly.
5. It’s All in the Details
If you’re sending someone an email with your sales presentation attached, they really don’t want to see “SalesDeck.pptx” in their downloads folder when they’re trying to open it.
Renaming the file while keeping in mind what the deck is to them is an additional thoughtful step they’ll be grateful for. So instead of “SalesDeck.pptx”, try naming it something like “XYZ company Presentation for ABC company.pdf”.
Notice that .pdf? Sending a PowerPoint (or the equivalent) file is a pain for everyone. The file size is large and do you really want them editing your presentation anyway?
Taking a moment to make the file a PDF will ensure the file will fit as an attachment and your prospect won’t be able to make any edits. It also looks much sleeker and is easier to open.
Speaking of easier to open: attachments are generally just annoying. If you and your company have the ability to avoid the seemingly necessary evil, then why don’t you?
Uploading the file and simply sending the prospect a link is easy and can even give you a way to track whether they’ve viewed it.
Sales presentations should constantly be evolving and transforming. They are a living, breathing document that should be adapted to reflect the wants and needs of the prospect at hand. Taking time to revamp your decks should be a priority that needs to be revisited regularly to ensure they provide value to your prospect, position your offering properly, and effectively help you make the sale.
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