Business development 21 October 2016

Three tips for presenting your new product or service

Graphics and illustrations can be helpful when selling something complex

What do small business owners need to know when presenting their new product or service? Client service director at presentation consultants Buffalo 7, Lyndon Nicholson, gives readers some clever tricks and tips.

People’s attention-spans seem to be narrowing – all thanks to the fast pace of our digital lifestyles. So when it comes to selling your product or service, particularly if it’s complex or technical, you need to work even harder to make an impact in a tight timescale. But with some consideration, you can use PowerPoint to sell even the most complex product.

Buffalo 7 worked with software startup GROW to transform its sales offer through a bespoke presentation, helping it to become the high-growth manufacturing business it is today.

Plan your story

A well told story not only sticks in your audience’s mind but is a great way to plan presenting your new product.

Think about the flow of your story before you commit any words to PowerPoint. Think about things like: why did your company start, your personal story, the people you’ve met along the way, what problem you’re solving, what impact you’ve had or could have on the industry.

Take your audience on a journey, immerse them in a story and build up to a key moment. End on a high – something inspirational, memorable or a simple ‘top takeaways’ to keep your points firmly at the front of your audience’s mind.

Bring it to life 

Animation, custom graphics and illustrations are all essential elements when selling something complex. Not only do they bring technical information to life but they keep people engaged in the presentation.

GROW needed to explain its services in additive manufacturing (the industrial version of 3D printing) and so used a series of bespoke illustrated elements that were animated together to explain the more complex parts of the process.

To boost your visual content further, make sure you use high resolution and high quality pictures. There are plenty of online free services which have good images for you to use such as Kaboompics. Using the right mix of visuals really helps to bring presentations to life.

Break ideas apart

When you’re trying to explain a complex idea, don’t feel you need to put everything in one slide. Seeing a slide packed full of text and dwelling on it to explain technical concepts for too long will lose attention. Instead, make it simple and visual – explain the concept over a series of slides as part of the narrative.

Grabbing attention in today’s data driven world is no mean feat but if you remember the three “e’s” in any sales pitch – “educate” “engage” and “excite” you can’t go far wrong. A well designed PowerPoint should include all of these elements and give you the tools to tell your story well and hopefully lead to that all-important sale.

Lyndon Nicholson is client services director at presentation specialist Buffalo 7

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