• 6 tips how to start sales presentation

How to Start Your Sales Presentation (6 Tips)

We spend a lot of time creating, sculpting, and perfecting our sales pitches, but we all know the most important part is the beginning. The average attention span is only a mere 8.25 seconds

[AR1] , so once you start talking, the clock starts ticking. Within the first few minutes, the audience has already decided how credible, likable, and believable you are.

The most important thing you can do is make the audience curious. Start with an opening that unfolds during the first few minutes of your presentation. Think about how standup comedians catch your attention. They engage you in a story and make you part of their world, then bam, they hit you with the punchline. In this case, the punchline would be the springboard into the body of your sales presentation. The story needs to be well written and well rehearsed. Do not start with information about your product or company, as it is not engaging and likely is not relatable. Start with something completely different. Here are some examples of a good opening story.

Talk About Something You Have Experienced Recently

You want your story to be something the audience resonates with, so if something happened to you recently, then maybe it happened to them too. This can earn you credibility and likeability right away. Similarly, talking about a strong emotion you have and why can go along the same lines. Remember to keep it noncontroversial yet still engaging.

Refer to a Well-Known Person

Tell a story about why someone is your favorite actor, businessperson, or public figure. Tell a story about your favorite character and how his or her actions changed you in some way. When you mention someone the audience knows, you know instantly have something in common, and it will make the audience more engaged. Oppositely, talk about your next-door neighbors. Which one of their quirks makes you like or dislike them? Talking about a historic event or person is a different way to go.

Tell a “What-If” Scenario

Get your audience thinking but grip them in your own world. Talk about a specific “what-if” story that is relatable and gets their minds turning. You can also ask your audience to imagine something completely different than what is normal. This allows you to learn more about them and them about you.

Use an Inspiring Quote

Start with a quote and explain the meaning behind it. How does it relate to you and your product? A quote about productivity is an effective way to go. For example, this quote by author Stephen King: “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” What could this mean about your product or company?

Talk about a Major Shift or Challenge for the Sector, or Even the World

Let your audience know right away that you are an expert. The perfect pitch leaves your audience feeling favorable about your experience and expertise.

Do a Poll or Ask Some People in the Audience a Question

Get personal and engage during your entire sales presentation, but especially at the beginning. Listen to what your audience has to say. Show them you are a good listener and can take direction and run with it. Understand their needs, wants, and personality.

Start crafting your sales pitch with the end goal in mind. Think thoughts like “at the end of this presentation, they will agree to meet with me again,” and start from there. You should spend at least 20 minutes crafting the first few minutes of your sales pitch, and much longer on the rest of the presentation. The first minutes are what counts, so do not cut yourself short.

Once you start your sales presentation on a good note, then you will feel more confident for the rest of the sales presentation. Confidence shows in voice pitch and body language that the audience will notice. Remember to make strong eye contact and have good posture. Standing up straight and holding your head high can make a big difference in the way you talk. Engage with your audience and let them know you acknowledge them at all times.

Instead of practicing in the mirror, record yourself giving your presentation and critique it. This method allows you to see your body language, facial expressions, tone, and phrasing all at the same time. Sell your opening and, with that, your presentation.

 

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About the Author:

As the Product Lead at Shaman, Maurice writes blogs that can help you to improve your sales and marketing strategies. You know what else could really boost your strategy? A tool like Shaman!

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