Selling anything is about giving your prospect the confidence to choose you over a competitor.
Your presentation and pitch is a make or break situation in this regard.
Presentations and pitches provide the opportunity to demonstrate your credentials to solve your prospect’s problems and address their needs. They also provide the opportunity to give your prospect the confidence that you are right for the job.
The problem with too many pitches is that they demonstrate credentials rather than demonstrate credentials to solve problems and address needs
Here is a story to illustrate the point
A client told me how they had a number of advertising agencies pitch for their business; each agency was given one hour to pitch.
My client was disappointed with the experience; “their pitches were all about their agency.”
The agencies showed examples of their work, discussed their clients and their philosophy, and talked about how strategic and creative they were.
However the one thing they failed to do was relate the above to my client’s needs.
“We” or “You” Presentations
The agencies’ presentations were “We” focused “We do this”, “We do that” etc rather than “You” focused.
This is not unusual; most presentations I sit through are no different.
THE PRESENTATION SHOULD BE ABOUT YOUR PROSPECT NOT ABOUT YOUR ORGANISATION.
What should the agencies have done and what should you do in your next presentation or pitch?
Start by recapping on your prospect’s objectives.
This is important because it demonstrates that you have listened and it allows for the prospect to update you on any changes since you last spoke, which would be useful to know before you plough into your prepared presentation!
Then demonstrate how you will help them to achieve their objectives one by one.
Along the lines of:
“Taking your first objective
- This is what we did for a client or partner who had a similar challenge
- This was our approach and rationale at the time
- This was the result
- This is how that experience informs our approach to solving your problem
- This is our suggested approach and solution
- What are your thoughts to what we have proposed?” (if format permits)
Then move on to their second objective etc
A variation of this sequence is:
- Their objective
- Your approach and solution to addressing their objective
- Your proof
Look at your presentation from their perspective
Put yourself in your prospect’s position on the other side of the table from you.
How would you feel about a pitch that addresses your needs one by one compared to one that doesn’t?
A key trait of “We” presentations is that they talk features not benefits
A recent presentation I saw said
“We have offices in Sydney and London.”
So what? What does that mean for the prospect – what is the benefit to them?
They should have gone on to say something along the lines of:
“What this means for you is that you will have real time access 24 hours a day to a team of consultants to deal with your requirements as and when they occur. Providing you with both reassurance and confidence.”
The mistake is to assume that the audience will know what the benefit is.
- Ensure your pitches are “you” rather than “we” focused
- Re state their objectives
- Address their objectives one by one
- Check that you have turned all your features into benefits
- See the pitch from their perspective