The sales presentation is a much ignored part of the sales process. When you go to courses or read posts on this subject you are presented with items like how to prospect for leads, sales systems, CRM tools and more. These are all great and I commend their use but once you are in front of a contact you need to convert them to a customer. This does not just happen, however needs careful thought and preparation. These seven steps will help you understand and implement a sales presentation that works.
This is a presentation technique that can be used in B2B sales but also can be adapted for any B2C sales particularly when selling professional services. The FAB Technique guide is also very useful to have to hand as it keeps you focused on what you are trying to achieve and assists with objection handling.
1. planning and preparation
Obviously done prior to the presentation itself, preparation prevents poor performance! Do your research. Know who you are talking to, their position in the company and/or particular needs and wants. What is it about your product or service that will truly appeal to them? How will it solve their problem? What will be their likely objections?
2. Introduction and opening
Any and all introductions and openings are primarily a means to build rapport. Get to know who you are talking to and let them get to know you a little too. Even if you are addressing a large group you can do this right at the start. Just by asking questions like, who is from marketing and who from is operations? Or, who has a businesses between two and five people? If you are in a one on one meeting have a small group you can use small talk to find out issues of interest, bring up a significant event for the company or economic event. Anything that can build rapport quickly.
To me this is the most important part of the sales methodology. Questioning to grind out everything you can about the prospect's need, wants and ways of viewing the world. What is important to them right now? How does what you are selling fit? What are the key features and benefits they could be looking for? What is the most important aspect of the company providing the product/service? How are they going to make the purchase decision? Who else needs to be part of the decision making process?
It is important to start this questioning process with open questions to avoid the meeting becoming like an interrogation. An open question encourages the prospect to talk broadly about what they need and why they need it, not just answer specific questions. You might find that they have something different in mind to other prospects and you need to know this. Once you have started with general open questions you then move to open but directional questions like "What are the most important problems you are looking to solve?" or "How else would you solve this if not using our solution?" After directional open questions you start to get into the specific questions in order to discover just what they know and what they don't. For example, "Have you bought in this category of product before?" "How did this go for you?" "What did you like and dislike?"
By the end of the questioning you should have a very good idea of what points to emphasise in your presentation and what to gloss over.
The presentation itself might be one you have prepared previously, like a PowerPoint presentation. The questioning should have uncovered the key concerns or triggers for the prospect and enable you to put emphasis on points which you think will be important to make the sale. Don't be afraid to stray from the PowerPoint during this time or even ignore it completely if you don't think it will be of benefit and have the confidence (or other materials) to deal with the contact's concerns more directly.
5. objections handling
In almost all sales meetings handling objections is the key to making a sale. The use of the FAB sales technique (Features Advantages Benefits) throughout your sales presentation is handy here as it helps you to keep coming back to the most salient points and ensures you are consistent when overcoming objections which have been brought up. Once an objection arises you can simply clarify that objection and then use the most appropriate FAB selling point to overcome it. For more on the FAB technique click here.
How to close a sale is something which should start to come apparent out of the sales objection handling phase of your sales presentation. If you have gone through the process well the prospect may be ready to close already. Closing a sale is simply the final process of the objections handling process. However, you often need to specifically ask for the sale at some stage. There are many closing techniques but I have always found a "What if" statement is one of the best. So an example sales close might be "What if we agree on these three points and we can start from there?"
7. after sales follow up
Quite simply, do what you say you are going to do. If you have closed effectively and handled the main objections most sales will simply flow through from there.
This sales presentation format is very useful for any one on one type meetings you have with prospects. Great for B2B sales and for B2C sales where you have a more complex product to sell, selling technical products, selling professional services and much much more.
Fit 4 Market are marketing consultants operating in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.