Why I’m Not Buying Your Sales Presentation, Bob

8 Simple Rules for a Sales Presentation That Won’t Suck

Bob has a thing to sell that I want (or need) to buy. Bob’s suit is clean and he smells good. Bob knows every sales trick in the book. But I’m not buying from Bob because his sales presentation… how do I put this mildly… well, it sucks.

Bob's sales presentation skills could use some updating.

Bob’s sales presentation skills could use some updating.

Here are seven… no, make it eight simple rules Bob needs to follow in order to move me to action with his sales presentation.

  1. Don’t suck.

Seriously, Bob! Do. Not. Suck. I can’t overstress this, which is why it’s Rule No. 1. The most important part of this rule is to be real. Be yourself, not some slick sales dude you think you need to be. If, at any time during your sales presentation you feel you’re losing me, refer to this rule. Being yourself… being real… never sucks.

2.    Don’t bore me.

Come on, Bob. Don’t start your sales presentation with a history of your company, a who’s who of who bought your thing or how long you’ve been selling it. I don’t care. That’s boring and boring sucks. You need to focus on the thing that interests me… (hint: that would be me). Tell me how your thing will make me richer, thinner, healthier, happier, or whatever. If you can do that, I’m all yours.

3.    Be original.

I’m not sure why so many sales people do the same boring, slick sales dude shtick. Don’t do that, Bob. Tell me something I don’t know about how the thing you’re selling will make my life better once I have it.

4.    Don’t talk down to me.

I get it, Bob. You know everything there is to know about the thing you’re selling, which is great. But I don’t care if you’re Einstein selling me relativity. Don’t make me feel dumb. I do that well enough on my own. I want you to help solve my problem and make me feel good about my decision. Making me feel stupid sucks. (See Rule No. 1.)

5.    Be interesting.

Turn your pitch into a story about how you and I and the thing you’re selling are going to team up to defeat our common opponent. Tell the story in a personal way that I can relate to.

6.    Use visual aids to bring your story to life.

Seriously, Bob. A PowerPoint with bullet points that you read to me? C’mon, Man! Rule No. 1 violation! You can do better. Stir my emotions. Good visuals are easy to make. Give me some relevant, but simple stats that give your story credibility. Make some cool charts or graphs or infographics. Whatever you do, don’t show me that bullet-point slideshow again or I might have to kick you in the shins on my way out the door.

7.    Don’t forget the call to action.

After getting me to this point in your sales presentation, Bob, don’t forgot the most important thing: a clear call to action. Make it easy for me to say “yes” and painless to complete the buying process.  

Final rule: Have fun.

I’m more likely to buy from someone who truly enjoys what they do and who makes the buying process enjoyable for both of us. Do these things, Bob, and you’ll never have to worry about violating Rule No. 1.

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