Presentation Skills – Grabbing a Buyer’s Attention in a Sales Meeting

Have them thinking like you

The big day has arrived, you have finally managed to swing a 20 minute meeting with the all-powerful decision maker. Having taken on board the concept that the buyer is not really interested in another product product presentation.

You now have the challenge of grabbing his attention within the first 30 seconds, and then keeping it focused on your proposal till the point comes when he is ready to say ‘yes’ and signs a contract.

But what approach should you take?

The first step is to get them on the same page as you are presenting. Your message within the first 30 seconds needs to connect with their thinking.

You need to engage them through the power of storytelling. Whereas in the 80’s it was a very popular, with the launch of Spin Selling, for you to act more like a consultant and commence asking your prospect a whole series of questions.

The premise was, that once you had gathered all the information on what the client wanted to achieve, you could then put a proposal together and present it to the CEO.

On first hearing of the needs analysis process, it seems that with this approach you are showing a great deal of interest in what your customer wants to achieve. And there is a place for this style of analysis, but not at the start of your presentation.

You have not earned the right to ask probing questions. Some of the questions you may need to ask, to do a proper needs analysis ,could reveal information of a strictly confidential nature.

Most buyers, until they get to know you, are unwilling to reveal such highly secretive data. Within the first 30 minutes of meeting you, they are not going to trust you with their secrets, the status of their company or the real state of their sales situation.

Show them a vision for the future

When I present to a buyer for the first time, I spend the majority of the meeting painting word pictures. Pictures that show them how I’ve turned around companies, just like theirs, as a result of buying my product or service.

What happens, is that once the penny has dropped for the CEO and they start to see themselves in my story, I then find that they start revealing of their own free will information about their situation that I can in turn use to make my presentation.

As salespeople we get so caught up in learning all the technical aspects of our product that we forget people aren’t actually interested in our product. What motivates them to buy from us is what our product can do for them.

Think about your annual holidays, are you really over the moon about the idea of spending money on an airline ticket. No, it’s where the airline ticket can take you that has you excited.

If all you were buying was an airline ticket, how exciting would that be? No, we are buying a holiday, total relaxation. The airline ticket is only the means of getting us to our destination, not the answer to our dreams.

We’re not really buying airline tickets, you are buying a week on Hayman Island: drinking martinis, sitting by the swimming pool as beautiful people walk past admiring us in our upmarket swimwear.

And so it is the same when you are selling your product or service. Before you bring out all your technical brochures, your company history and why your vision statement makes your company the top member of your industry, please remember that people want here are about people like themselves having the same success they are looking for

No, it is far more important that you grab your buyer emotionally, as they picture a better future because of what to offer.

Question: What approach do you find works the best?