During a recent virtual meeting, I had the opportunity to collaborate with a startup founder on their sales deck—a vital component of their business strategy. They had engaged us to refine their sales presentation.
The founder shared a concerning observation: "We've noticed a drop in audience engagement as early as the second slide of our sales presentation. While I've heard of Death by PowerPoint, I never anticipated losing our audience so soon—why is it happening on slides 2 and 3?"
It sounded familiar because we'd encountered a similar issue with another sales presentation we worked on.
"I think I might know what the problem is," I told them. "It seems like you're not building enough tension in the first part of your presentation. Building excitement and tension leads to a smooth introduction to your product/service. Maybe starting your sales presentation with 'Our capabilities' is making people tune out or worse, get defensive."
So, my suggestion on this is to split the presentation into two parts:
1. The story that grabs attention
2. The rationale that persuades action.
If you're looking for an answer to what are the two parts of a sales presentation, read this complete article as that's all we're going to talk about. The idea is to appeal to both sides of the decision-makers, emotional and logical.
Part 1: The Story That Grabs Attention
Imagine a sales presentation as a gripping movie or a page-turning book. The first part is all about drawing the audience in and making them care about what you have to say. It's like setting the scene and introducing the characters in a way that makes you want to keep watching or reading.
Here are a few ideas to get you started...
1. Grab Their Attention Right Away
Start with a question that makes them think, like "Are you tired of feeling overwhelmed by paperwork?"
Share a relatable story about someone facing a challenge they'll recognize like a small business owner struggling to keep up with customer data.
Throw out a surprising statistic that makes them sit up and take notice, like "Did you know that 75% of businesses waste time on manual tasks that could be automated?"
2. Show Them the Problem
Paint a clear picture of the struggles they're facing without your solution.
Use examples and language that really resonates with their experiences.
Make them feel the frustration and pain points so they're eager for a change.
3. Introduce Your Solution as the Hero
Present your product or service as the answer to their problems.
Highlight its key features and benefits in a way that shows how it can save the day.
Use demos, visuals, or customer testimonials to bring it to life and make it feel real.
4. Paint a Picture of a Better Future
Show them how their lives or businesses could be transformed by using your solution.
Help them visualize the positive outcomes and the potential they could unlock.
Get them excited about the possibilities and eager to take the next step.
Why is this first part so important?
It builds connection and trust: People are more likely to buy from someone they feel understands their needs and challenges.
It engages emotions: Decisions are often driven by emotions, so getting people to feel something about your product is key.
It creates anticipation: When you paint a compelling picture of the solution, they'll be eager to learn more and see how they can get it.
Part 2: The rationale that persuades action
Remember the captivating story you wrote in Part 1? Now, it's time to turn that emotional crescendo into a concrete action plan. Imagine Part 2 as the grand finale, where the hero (your product) triumphantly solves the problem and the audience is left eager to join the journey.
Here are a few ideas...
1. The Spotlight on Action
Ditch the passive listening; bring your audience onto the stage with a clear and irresistible call to action. Don't just tell them what they can do, show them why they must do it.
Offer a tempting next step, like a free trial, a personalized demo, or an exclusive consultation. Make it so enticing they can't resist reaching out.
2. The Recurring Rhythm of Opportunity
Don't leave the call to action to the final bow. Weave it subtly throughout the presentation, like a recurring melody building anticipation. Highlight how each feature and benefit leads them closer to that action, making it the natural and desirable climax of the story.
3. Interactive Harmony
Forget the rigid script and stiff delivery. Embrace humor, suspense, and interactive elements to keep the audience engaged. Use technology, but let it enhance the human connection, not replace it. Make eye contact, read the room, and adapt your presentation to their reactions. Remember, this is a collaborative performance, not a one-person show.
4. The Grand Finale - A Standing Ovation of Engagement
Culminate your presentation with a powerful finale that compels them to say "yes." Give them a glimpse of the transformed future, a taste of the victory they now yearn for. Make it crystal clear what awaits them on the other side of that decision, and watch as hands shoot up, eager to claim their piece of the new reality.
Why is the 2nd part important?
It transforms emotion into action: You've ignited their fire; now provide the fuel to keep it burning. A call to action gives them the direction and motivation to take the next step.
It personalizes the journey: Offer choices and tailor your approach to their specific needs. Make them feel like this action is customized for them, not a generic sales pitch.
It leaves a lasting impression: By providing a satisfying conclusion and a clear path forward, your audience will have a positive and actionable memory of your presentation.
Work with us
If crafting a sales deck feels like too much, don't worry. We specialize exclusively in presentations, so tackling this challenge is our forte. Reach out to us via the contact page on our website, and one of our consultants will be in touch promptly to assist you.
Explore our sales deck services here