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7 Step Process for Developing a Winning Sales Presentation

by Adam Basheer , on 07-Dec-2016 12:07:28

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. 

Customer XSmall.jpg

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.

3. questioning 

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.

4. presentation

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 . 

6. closing

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.

FAB Technique Guide

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15 Sales Presentation Techniques That Will Help You Close More Deals Today

Chris Orlob

Updated: June 01, 2022

Published: May 31, 2022

Hate the thought of doing sales presentations ? You’re not alone. But the best reps have sales presentations down pat, even if it’s not their favorite activity.

sales presentation methods

The best sales reps know that, when done right , sales presentations are a high-earning skill.

So, let’s hone that skill with simple sales presentation techniques that communicate an irresistible narrative and get buyers to close.

→ Free Download: 10 PowerPoint Presentation Templates [Access Now]

Sales Presentation

An effective sales presentation tells a compelling story, highlights your value proposition, and aligns with your audience's needs and desires. It ends with a strong call-to-action and leads prospects to your differentiators instead of leading with them.

As it can sometimes mean the difference between closing a deal or losing a customer, you definitely want to get your sales presentation right. There are strategies and tips you can follow to ensure your sales presentations are effective, memorable, and engaging. Let’s go over them below.

Sales Presentation Methods

1. structure your presentation. .

Guiding your prospects down a clear path is key to a successful sales presentation. You’ll follow a logical structure, and listeners will understand how each element of your presentation relates to one another, rather than them having to piece together disjointed information on their own. 

There are times when flipping the structure can add unique elements to your presentation, though, and we’ll discuss this further below. 

2. Use data visualizations. 

Using visuals, like charts and graphics, to supplement your message is a valuable way to showcase your content in an easy-to-understand format as they make your words more impactful. 

For example, if you’re selling SaaS that helps users organize their sales process for a shorter cycle, you can create a visual that displays the average length of your clients’ sales cycle vs. those using other tools. 

By doing this, you’re adding extra emphasis to your words with a visual picture, and a bonus is that visuals are more likely to stick with your audience and get them thinking versus just hearing you talk. 

3. Rely on spoken words — not text.

If your presentation slides are text-heavy, prospects may get caught up reading the words you’ve written instead of listening, causing them to miss out on the value you’re sharing. Aim to include less text by calling attention to the most significant elements with short bursts of text that you supplement with your words. 

In addition, when you have less text on your slides, you may be less inclined to just read from them, which can be a bad part of presentations. You’ll have to speak instead of relying on written content. 

Let’s go over some sales presentation techniques that, when paired with the three methods above, will help you nail it every time.

Sales Presentation Techniques

1. send your buyer the presentation deck before your call..

You might assume that sending a buyer a deck before a call is like revealing whodunnit on the cover of a murder mystery. No one will pay attention to the rest of the book, right? 

When the Gong.io team started sharing our deck before opening sales calls, we learned it was a winning move. 

If your deck is compelling, prospects will want to get into it with you, even if they know the main point. Together, you can dive in, dissect the good bits, and talk through questions. It’s going to be a juicy conversation, and they know it.

Then, you can begin the conversation during your presentation with a statement like, “Based on the information in the deck I sent, where should we start?”

2. Invoke self-discovery.

It’s tempting to stick to a positive linear story during your sales presentation. That usually invokes talking about benefits, outcomes, and desired results. But, that approach isn’t always the best. 

Before discussing solutions and results, you must understand your prospect's problem. More importantly, you have to be sure your prospects understand the problem. 

Self-discovery is the ticket that gets you there. Instead of telling the buyer what the problem is and how you’ll address it, get your buyer to connect with the problem on their own. 

3. Talk about Point A. Don’t skip to point B.

This is 100% linked to the tip above. There’s a problem (point A) and desired outcome (point B). Point A is the status quo. It’s a problem your buyer will continue to face if they don’t make a change. 

You can stand out by focusing on point A, as talking about a pain point is shockingly more effective than talking about positive outcomes. 

Make your buyer feel the pain that results from the status quo. Convince them the pain will only worsen without your solution — because you know that to be true.

You should only talk about benefits once they’re on board with that line of thinking. Urgency is what allows benefits to land. Without urgency, benefits are just happy points that hold no real meaning.

4. Insight is your #1 lead story.

Buyers are experts on their circumstances, but they want insights into their situation from you. 

You’re most likely to impress a buyer by telling them something new about themselves, as your offering is a unique insight into their problems and opportunities.

Check out this TaylorMade video. It’s a bang-on example of how to lead a presentation with insight, and then move on to your product’s strengths:

You learned how to get more distance from your golf swing (an insight into what you’re doing). Then you learned how that’s supported by the product’s particular strength.

Insight comes first. It changes how your buyers think about the problem your product solves. Only then benefits can land effectively.

5. Don’t lead with differentiators, lead to them.

At Gong.io, we’ve taught our sales reps to speak with buyers about a critical problem only we can solve. It’s the delta between top producers and the rest of the team.

don't lead with differentiators in your sales presentations

We only introduce our key differentiator once the backstory is clear and the buyer gets it. Then, our reps say something like this:

"Gong is the only platform that can tell you what your top reps do differently from the rest of your team. We can tell you which questions they ask, which topics they discuss, when they talk about each one, and more."

See why we lead to our differentiator, and not with it? It just wouldn’t land the same way if we started with the differentiator. In fact, it might not land at all.

6. Focus on value, not features.

Gong.io research found that focusing on features over value is not impactful. Prospects, especially decision-makers, want value propositions about how you’ll help them solve their problems rather than an overview of the features they’ll get. 

sales presentation process

7. Flip your presentation.

he next, eventually achieving a shiny, final outcome. This isn’t always the best strategy. 

Instead of building up to the most significant and impactful part of your demo for your prospect, begin with the most valuable part, which is how you’ll help them, and let the conversation flow from there. 

There’s one other tactic underlying it all: The best product demos start with topics the buyers highlighted on the discovery call . For example, if the buyer spends 4 minutes talking about X and 10 minutes talking about Y, you want to begin with Y, as the buyer has demonstrated that they’re heavily interested in Y. In the opening section of your presentation, address the biggest issue from discovery. Address the second biggest issue second, etc.

It’s called solution mapping, and it’s going to change your sales presentation process forever. Stop saving the big reveal for last. Stop building anticipation. Start with the good stuff. Let it rip right out of the gate.

8. Turn your presentation into a conversation.

If you sensed we were looking for a two-way dialogue during your pitch, you’re right. That’s a relief to most salespeople, especially the ones who hate delivering traditional presentations.

A two-way dialogue is going to make your pitch feel more natural. To do this, Gong.io says to get buyers to ask questions by giving them just enough info to inspire them to ask more questions and keep the conversation going. In fact, top performers ask fewer questions because they don’t bombard prospects with too much information but instead give buyers just enough information to have them ask questions. 

sales presentation process

Long monologues won’t help you have real conversations with your buyers. Instead, aim for a great two-way conversation. 

9. Mind the 9-minute period.

This tip is crisp and clear: Don’t present for more than nine minutes. Gong.io data supports this. 

Best sales presentation length

Presentations for lost deals last an average of 11.4 minutes. Why do they go so poorly? Because it’s hard to retain attention. If you do go longer than nine minutes, switch it up. 

Vary something that re-captures attention and keeps people engaged. Change channels by doing something like switching up who’s speaking in real life or on video. This can rest your clock to zero, and you’ve got nine more minutes for the next portion of the show. 

10. Be strategic with social proof. 

Social proof. Best friend or worst nightmare? It can be either one, so use it carefully. For example, generic social proof (i.e., naming impressive clients for brand power alone) is a disaster. Buyers might not identify with them. Sure, they’re dazzled, but they may not see how they relate to your current client.

An effective strategy is to reference clients similar to your buyer, with the same pain points, challenges and needs that they can relate to. You can tell an accompanying story about the client and their pain points, helping the buyer see themselves in the story you’re telling.

11. Talk price after you establish value.

Would it surprise you to know it matters when you talk about certain topics? It can actually affect whether you win or lose a deal. Pricing is a great example of this principle.

The top salespeople wait to talk about pricing. They know it’s important to demonstrate their product’s value first.

pricing discussions should happen after you establish value

Set an agenda at the start of your call so your buyer knows when to expect a pricing discussion. They’ll be less likely to raise it early, and if they do, you can refer back to the agenda.

Open with something like, " I’d like to talk about A, B, and C on our call today. Then we can go over pricing at the end and -- if it makes sense for you -- talk about next steps. Does that work for you?"

You’re all set.

12. Reference your competitors.

Our data shows that you’re more likely to win a deal if you talk about the competition early in the sales process instead of ignoring them completely.

sales presentation process

For best results, practice this during your first sales presentation. Waiting until the end of your sales process puts you into a dangerous red zone. Your buyers will already have formed opinions, and they’ll be harder to change.

In other words, at the end of the day, buyers will justify a decision they made early in the process, which is why it’s critical to set yourself up as the winner early on. Talk about the competition in your presentation. Put the conversation out there. Get your buyer to see you through that lens, and you’re golden.

Over To You

You now have 15 new tips and techniques to throw down this quarter. Many of these data-backed moves come from Gong.io’s own findings and have proven to be effective for us. Implement them, and I know you’ll boost your numbers.

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Download ten free PowerPoint templates for a better presentation.

13 tips for a perfect sales presentation

By Lauren Funk

Last updated March 13, 2022

sales presentation process

At some point, you’ve probably sat through a terrible sales presentation—bad content, too much text, no images, and no showmanship. This type of presentation isn’t just boring; it can also discourage future sales.

A well-executed, customer-centric, and data-driven sales presentation will convince any audience that they need your product or service.

We’ll start by discussing what you should know about your potential customer before building your sales presentation.

From there, we’ll dive into a six-step guide for creating a sales presentation outline, along with 13 tips (with examples) for crafting an effective B2B sales presentation that’ll seal the deal at your next meeting:

Table of contents

The 6-step guide to a sales presentation outline.

13 tips for executing a perfect sales presentation

Let’s dive in, keeping established sales stages in mind:

How to draft a B2B sales presentation outline

You may be thinking, “Do I really need to write an outline?” The truth is, starting with an outline will save you time in the long run. It should serve as a road map for the pitch itself, providing the necessary framework needed to stay focused and ensuring that your sales presentation has clear direction and logical flow.

Prepare to write your sales presentation outline by answering two questions about your audience and the goal of the presentation itself.

Who are you pitching to?

Potential customers don’t care about the history of your company or your product’s features; they want to know what’s in it for them. If your sales presentation is to be successful at all, it must answer that question, and specifically.

Before you begin drafting a sales presentation outline, take some time to research your potential customer:

The answer to these questions will provide the “big picture” insight you need to execute an effective sales pitch.

What’s the big picture?

Companies want solutions that will contribute to their long-term health in the long run. Take a step back to identify your potential customer’s big-picture goals. What might success look like for them 10 years down the road, and how will your product help get them there?

The most effective B2B sales presentations will demonstrate to your potential customer that investing in your product is investing in their own success.

Now that you’ve answered the questions “Who are you pitching to” and “What’s the big picture?” you’re ready to start writing your sales presentation outline.

While the complexity of any sales presentation will vary, depending on the customer and the breadth of that customer’s challenges and needs, the basic formula remains the same.

1. Introduce yourself

Keep your introductory (also called “title”) slide clean and simple. The last thing you want to do is immediately overwhelm your audience with jarring images or busy text. Take a look at the title slide for AdGibbon’s sales presentation:

sales presentation tips

It’s simple, clean, and to the point. Remember, the goal here is to present your brand and set the stage for the rest of the presentation. Nothing more, nothing less.

2. Present the problem

If you’ve answered the “Who are you pitching to?” questions, you’ve identified your potential customer’s main pain points.

Think of this slide as an agitator. The goal is to present your potential customer’s challenges in a way that reinvigorates their frustration and need for a solution.

ProdPad does an excellent job of stepping into the shoes of its target customer and agitating their main pain points:

sales presentation tips

Take note of the language ProdPad uses. Rather than rely on technical explanations for why spreadsheets are inefficient platforms for ideation, ProdPad elicits an emotional reaction from its audience by comparing spreadsheets to “black holes where ideas enter and rarely re-emerge.” The more your audience believes that you understand their problems, the more likely they are to believe that your solution can fix them, too.

3. Present the solution

Paint a picture of what life will look like for your potential customer if they purchase your product. The purpose of this slide is to present core solutions your product offers relative to the current challenges of your potential customer.

Avoid rattling off features or services that offer no direct benefit to your potential customer. Otherwise, you may lose their attention. Take a look at how Microsoft uses images and text to paint an “after” picture for customers who purchase their Office365 product:

sales presentation tips

The visuals make this sales presentation particularly effective. Microsoft isn’t just telling its potential customers how Office365 will make their lives better; it’s showing them . This is an effective tactic for providing your audience with a sense of relief after agitating their main pain points.

4. Back it up with data

Now that you’ve explained how your product will benefit your potential customer, back up your claim with a case study. Present a scenario where your product solved the main challenges of a company similar to that of your potential customer. Explain how and why your product was a solution, and present the data to prove it. Take a look at the Microsoft example below.

sales presentation tips microsoft

The sales presentation for Office365 includes the results of five separate case studies on one slide. Notice which text stands out the most: the numbers. Keep your case-study data front and center for the maximum effect.

5. Summarize (drive home your pitch)

This slide can be as brief or as involved as you deem necessary. For example, you may choose to summarize all of the core benefits your product can provide to your potential customer. On the other hand, a simple and concise company motto may feel more appropriate. ProdPad’s summary slides use the latter approach:

ProdPad people products ideas

ProdPad summarizes their unique value proposition in just a few words. It’s a product that “brings together your people, products and ideas” with implementation alone. “It changes the way your business runs right under your nose,” meaning no effort is even required to see results. It’s just that good.

6. Open the floor to questions

At the conclusion of your sales presentation, allow your audience to ask questions. The goal here is to get your potential customer involved in the conversation. The questions and feedback you receive may provide additional insight that would be helpful for closing the sale.

Now that you have a solid sales presentation outline, it’s time to perfect the final product. Utilize the following 13 sales presentation tips to ensure your pitch seals the deal.

1. Start with a solid foundation

There’s no reason to reinvent the wheel. Thousands of professionally designed presentation templates are waiting for you on the web. The trick to picking the right one is to dive a little deeper.

Presentation programs like Keynote and PowerPoint offer stock templates straight out of the box. Do not use these. Look for a third-party template that’s professionally designed. There are plenty of attention-grabbing presentation alternatives out there.

Your company may provide you with a template worth using, or you may have to invest in buying your own. Either way, make sure you’re using a template that’s clean and doesn’t look like something you or your prospect has seen a million times before.

Consider enterprise software company Zuora’s sales deck—a presentation that Andy Raskin proclaimed “ the greatest sales deck I’ve ever seen. ”

Zoura shift happens

The company’s deck is clean and visually appealing, with images and little text. Stats, quotes, and facts are all displayed but do not overwhelm the viewer. The slides embody Zuora’s brand and differentiate the company’s presentation from other run-of-the-mill slide decks.

subscription economy is here

Bonus tip: Don’t overload the foundation. While it’s tempting to slap your logo, name, and contact information on every single slide: resist. Good design is enough to make it feel on-brand for your company. Just share your contact info on the first and last slide. And give them your card, of course.

sales presentation process

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2. Speak to a pain point

The product you are promoting is designed to solve a problem. Start there. Make it personal. You should know enough about the people you’re pitching to know what their pain points and how your product will address them. Lead with this. A short paragraph or even a few lines are enough. Think of it this way:

Let’s take a minute to revisit how ProdPad’s sales presentation approaches the pain point of ineffective spreadsheets for product management . Remember this image?

ProdPad Spreadsheets

In subsequent slides, ProdPad offers a solution by presenting a unique value proposition: better product management software:

ProdPad better way to manage

This approach captures your prospect’s attention and demonstrates your expertise. It shows that you’re aware of the customer’s current situation and that you want to help.

3. Unique is memorable

Your brand needs to stand out in your presentation; include unique elements that catch the viewer’s eye and keep them engaged.

Social networking site Reddit created a unique sales deck for their ad opportunities. Their company culture shines through. Cats are a constant throughout the presentation, which showcases their brand’s unique sense of humor. There are also practical examples of why their site works well for advertisers.


Reddit took a unique approach based on the social nature of their business. The same idea can be applied to any presentation. As long as the concept matches your overall brand, come up with creative angles to present your material that are interesting for your viewers—make them remember you.

4. Provide a framework

Establish a clear flow of information in your presentation. There are several structures you can go with. One is the SCR framework, which stands for Situation, Complication, Resolution. Think of your presentation as a funnel. Offer the big picture before narrowing down to your call to action.

Some of the best presentations are given in a story format. In fact, 65% of the most successful presentations are stories.

“When you’re building your next sales deck, keep one thing in mind: Prospects don’t care about your product,” Courtney Chuang of DocSend says. DocSend uses the story approach for their sales deck:

sales was more sale-y

The first slide sets the stage for their value proposition. They then answer the following questions throughout the presentation.

Of the prospects who open DocSend’s deck, 65.4% click through to the last slide. And that’s no surprise. After all, everyone likes a good story.

5. Skip the corporate spiel

To set the mood, many salespeople spend far too much time talking about their company. They have been coached into believing this approach builds brand trust. But, really, it just sounds insecure. Instead of tooting your own horn, highlight your expertise in the very narrow subject matter that’s relevant to this pitch. Then, flash a single “jewel” slide that boasts familiar brand logos of companies that have invested in your product.

Sell logo slide

Your prospects want to know how you can help them solve their particular problem. Tell the story of how you’ve solved a similar problem for someone else they like, know, and trust. Then move on.

6. Offer Solutions

Spend time connecting pain points with how your product or service can help the customer. At the same time, don’t harp on pain points for too long. Highlight your prospect’s successes, and tell them why your product will help them experience more of the good stuff. Microsoft’s 2015 Presales Presentation offers an excellent example of this.

out of the box benefits

Be specific as you describe the wins they’ll achieve, and make it personal. Name-dropping the people in the room in the middle of a story about success gives them a confidence boost in themselves and, by extension, you.

7. Provide research

Include both external and internal research in your presentation. This practice gives your brand authority. External research includes things like industry data. Break down your information into more easily digestible pieces using graphs and statistics. For example, see how gannettlocal presented relevant industry/market research in graph form:

why digital

For internal research, at Zendesk Sell we completed several client case studies, such as Museum Hack and Expensify . These case studies demonstrate why our solution works. They also tell a story about why our clients trust us. Incorporate real-world examples and numbers into your presentation that show how your clients have been helped.

8. Everyone is counting on the ROI

A business investment that doesn’t generate sales above and beyond its cost to procure just doesn’t pencil out. Go into your presentation crystal clear on how your potential client will see a return on their investment in the short- and long-term. ROI is about more than just dollars. Be prepared to talk about how the company will increase sales, reduce costs, make more money, gain more market share, or improve productivity.

WeWork presents how potential customers can save money in comparison with alternative workspaces:

a compelling value proposition

Spell out quickly and clearly exactly how financial results will be achieved. Features are great, but make sure to clearly communicate the value.

9. Rehearse

This is an obvious point but is often overlooked. No matter how well you know your prospect and your product, you simply cannot expect to wing it. The business climate is far too competitive for that type of approach.

A complete rehearsal builds confidence and gives you time to smooth out any rough spots. Not only that, but a rehearsal gives you a much firmer sense of how much time you’ll need as well. You never want your prospect shifting in their seat because you’ve gone over your scheduled time. It can also help to record yourself (even if no one likes watching themselves on video).

Wistia’s Soapbox is an excellent way to record and watch yourself present with your slides before the big day:


10. Speak to your audience

Matt Price Zendesk Sell

If an audience member interrupts, listen to the question, and then thoughtfully reply. This gives you insight into what they want to gather from your presentation. Think of your presentation more like a customer conversation .

hand raised business meeting

Another good rule of thumb? Engage and connect with your audience. Don’t be boring. Speak to each audience section in turn. Use your hands to express yourself. Also try to find ways to involve the audience in your presentation. This can be as simple as asking for a show of hands to a particular question.

A physical demonstration can also be useful. Use a whiteboard, or show a quick video . You don’t want to overdo it, but a little enthusiasm, a few visuals, and eye contact can go a long way.

12. Know when to stop

Average attention span is 8 seconds

Time magazine reported that the average attention span has dropped to eight seconds. The takeaway? Get to the point quickly. Speak to your prospect’s pain points, and offer the solution. Remember:

It’s easy to keep talking. It takes skill to know when to stop. You also want to make sure you finish with sufficient time for questions.

13. Include a call to action

At the end of your presentation, clearly define what next steps your audience needs to take in order to get involved with your product or service. Insert one CTA on your last slide, as well as your contact information. Use active, present-tense language.

Zuora’s presentation simply concludes their story with “The End” and includes a hashtag that says #startyourstory. This encourages the audience to dig deeper into the product.

zuora start your story

In addition to the hashtag #startyourgrowth, Sendy (a self-hosted email newsletter application) includes contact information.

Sendy start your growth

You might also include some type of discount or incentive to create a sense of urgency. The goal is to drive your audience to action.

Creating and giving a successful sales presentation takes practice. Use the tips and examples here as a foundation to polish your own presentation. Sales information can often be dry material. Be creative, and come up with interesting ways to present your product or service to get your audience excited and close the sale.

Once you’ve nailed the sales presentation…

You’re going to need a place to manage all of those leads, contacts, and customers. High-performing sales teams choose Zendesk Sell. If you haven’t yet, you can try Zendesk Sell for free for 14 days . And be sure to check out more sales tips and tricks over on the sales blog .

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10 sales presentation tips to help you close deals

Author picture: Dana Vogel

Sales used to be about knocking on doors with a big smile and a smooth spiel. Today, those doors have all but disappeared and been replaced with automated lead generation and sales presentations over Zoom. But one principle will never change: Sales is all about connecting people and their needs to your product and the solutions it provides.

We’ve compiled a handy list of sales presentation tips to help you connect with prospects and build trust across the digital divide. But first, let’s start with the basics — the sales presentation itself.

What is a sales presentation? 

A sales presentation is a step in the sales process where sales professionals demonstrate the product or service’s value proposition and use it to convince potential clients. 

The most effective presentations are simple and concise; they tell a visual story of how your product or service can solve your customer’s pain points. Sales decks should be easy to follow, so your audience can focus on the message instead of getting distracted by complex words and images. 

What should an effective sales presentation include?

How do you tell a good sales presentation from a great one? The best sales presentations are tailored to a specific prospect, but there are a few key slides that every deck should include:

Now, let’s dive into the specific tips and techniques that’ll help you build and present the perfect sales pitch.

Win prospects with these 10 sales presentation tips

1. use a sales presentation template to save time and stay on brand.

To move quickly and stay on brand, high-performing sales teams don’t build their sales decks from scratch. Instead, they use presentation templates that are easy to customize for various audiences and contexts. With a template, you can focus on delivering buyer experiences — not redoing slides every time you need to meet with a prospect. 

Building a template with Pitch is easy and will help you stay consistent and organized. You can:

sales presentation process

2. Create presentations that fit into the customer journey

A successful sales presentation centers prospects as heroes in their buyer journey — on a mission to improve their own company by investing in your solution. It demonstrates an understanding of why potential customers would use your product and shows how its features can help solve their problems.

By addressing your audience's actual pains and desires, you’ll prove that you have their best interests in mind. This builds trust that you’ll be there for them after the sale.

3. Gather supporting material

To ensure your sales reps can deliver a standout pitch, you’ll need to provide a few extra components to complement your sales deck :

Your sales team’s main focus should be understanding a prospect’s needs and how your product can help them. The more resources a sales rep has at their disposal, the more they can focus on listening and responding with the right examples and selling points. 

4. Collaborate on your sales pitch 

Your job is to know your product inside out. Your job is also to have a deep understanding of your customer. And once you’ve got the story that links product and customer, you’re set.

The thing is, you’re not the only one who knows your product and customer. Your product, marketing, and customer success teams are also great sources of knowledge. And your brand and design team helps make sure you look your best. So to build the most effective sales decks, you need to collaborate with other teams.

“ Having a feedback loop is critical. Customer-facing material should include insights from customer success teams and sales development representatives. ”

Alexa Grabell

Alexa Grabell , Co-founder & CEO

sales presentation process

In Pitch, you can collaborate with your teams to create compelling pitch decks. Here are a few ways you can work together to make a winning sales presentation: 

5. Build rapport remotely

Building remote rapport takes more than a virtual handshake. To instill confidence, provide the customer with relevant information, products, and services that make their lives easier. 

Here are a few remote conversation tips to keep in mind when building rapport:

6. Engage your customer on their terms

One way to engage your leads is to talk about something they care about. This means doing your homework — after all, good sales presentations start with research .

Another way to wake up a prospect is to drop a provocative statement. For example, if you’re selling educational software, you might say something like, “Teaching to the test has greatly improved our education system.” Your audience might totally disagree, but it will likely open up an interesting conversation.

“ When you’re delivering your sales pitch, present some sort of limbic brain messaging to trigger an emotional response. Say something provocative to engage your audience. ”

Belal Batrawy

Belal Batrawy , Head of GTM

sales presentation process

7. Be obsessed with customer outcomes

Sales reps need to listen to a prospect’s end goals and find ways to solve their bigger problems. So don’t fill your sales presentation to the brim with stats and selling points. Instead, leave plenty of time for questions. This will help you learn about your audience’s desires and barriers, so you can formulate the ideal solution.

And be prepared to find answers, even if they fall outside the domain of your product. Imagine you’re selling a tool for business trip planning, and a prospect asks about Covid policies at the Amsterdam airport. That might not be part of the service you’re selling, but finding the answer shows you’re there to provide solutions, not just to sell software.  

There will always be some clients that take longer to close. But sales is about building relationships. Your job is to work with your buyers until they’re ready to buy. By showing them you're willing to put in the time upfront, they’re more likely to trust that you’ll be there after you’ve closed the deal.

8. After you present, follow up

You nailed your sales presentation. Nice job! But you’re not quite done. The next step is to follow up. With the tools available to us today, that’s easy as pie.

Share your presentation with specific permissions that allow others to either edit, comment on, or view it. You can also create custom links to make your sales deck feel even more personal. 

To add some dynamism, you can sell async and embed video recordings in your slides. This makes it easy for someone to watch your presentation from anywhere, on their own time. 

And use presentation analytics to keep a pulse on buyer engagement. Track the number of views your deck is getting, and receive a detailed breakdown for specific time periods. This will help you know the prospect’s level of interest when you follow up. 

9. Learn and iterate

Say your pitch has paid off, and you’ve closed the deal. Again, congrats! You might be eager to move on to your next sales presentation — and success story. But before dialing up that qualified lead, take a minute to learn from the process. 

For instance, have you heard multiple customers say your product is “as smooth as butter?” Consider testing this language as part of your value proposition. 

On the other hand, is your most frequent complaint about how slow your product is? Maybe speed should be prioritized in the next product sprint.

10. Revisit and refresh your sales deck

Even the best sales decks need a regular refresh. How often you do this depends on the information you have available and on the rhythm of your teams — but a thorough quarterly review is a good place to start.

You can easily assign slides to specific account executives to make sure information is up to date, on brand, and consistent across decks. By building this step into your sales team rituals, you’ll be sure that your decks not only look good, but continue to impress with relevant content. 

And don’t forget to bring marketing and customer success into this refresh process. These teams can provide invaluable input on what messaging is resonating in the market and offer new case studies to include in your presentations.

Start building winning sales presentations 

Now you know what it takes to build a great sales presentation — and how to support your team in using presentations to build a high-performing sales process and feedback culture. 

Ready to start crafting your next sales deck? Here’s a selection of professionally designed sales presentation templates that you can use to get started for free. They’re fully customizable, so you can tailor them to your brand and audience.

And when you’re ready to share, you can link to specific slides , invite collaborators into your workspace, and set a status and assignees . With Pitch, some just might say that going from draft to deck is as smooth as butter.

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Sales presentations: templates, examples and ideas on how to present like a pro

Sales Presentation

You might think of a sales presentation as a simple pitch, a demo, or a list of facts and figures, but while a good presentation does incorporate all of those elements, it’s more than the sum of its parts. Done well, at the right time in your sales process, it gets your prospects’ attention, drums up excitement and moves them towards making a buying decision.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to use the power of storytelling to drive decision-making and close more deals, with some pitch examples straight from Shark Tank and Dragons’ Den. We’ll also cover the fundamental elements of a sales presentation strategy, what to include in your sales decks and practical ideas on how to deliver them.

Read on for plenty of sales presentation examples and pitch suggestions that will help you develop your own effective sales narrative.

What is a sales presentation?

Although the terminology differs from company to company, a sales presentation is not always the same thing as a sales pitch.

A sales pitch is what your team of sales professionals does all day long, on the phone or in person with clients. It’s usually one on one, and they’re pretty comfortable doing it.

A sales presentation (although it’s still a sales pitch) is a bigger deal, figuratively and probably literally. It’s a more complicated version of a sales pitch, and usually, it happens when your sales team is trying to close a more lucrative deal. It’s not a simple phone call, as it often involves a meeting and a demo.

You’ll need to budget more time for a presentation, as you’ll need to account for prep time and testing. In many cases, more than one person from your company will give the presentation, so there’s a need to coordinate with other team members.

Even for a seasoned salesperson who cold calls and pitches all day on the phone, a presentation can be unnerving, as you’re likely presenting to a group of senior decision-makers and executives.

Sales Presentation storytelling

Storytelling and your sales presentation

People love to be told a story, especially if it’s relevant to their experiences and problems.

Statistics, facts and figures can help when you’re trying to persuade a prospect to become a customer, but they’re more impactful if you can frame those statistics in a relatable way. For example, if you tell a story about an existing customer who faced the same challenges as your prospect, and supplement that with powerful data, they are more likely to listen and want to know more.

Human beings have a deep relationship with storytelling. Stories move us, teach us and, in a sales context, persuade us. We remember stories more than we remember anything else.

Chip Heath, a Stanford professor and the co-author of Made to Stick , demonstrates the importance of storytelling by doing an exercise with his students. He divides them into groups and asks them to deliver a one-minute persuasive pitch based on data he’s just shown them.

After the pitches have been delivered and there’s been a break, he’ll ask the class to jot down everything they remember about them. Although most students use stats rather than stories, 63% remember the stories, while only 5% remember an individual data point.

The stickiness of stories makes them a useful tool for developing a sales presentation outline, as they help prospects understand and remember the key points of the presentation and your product.

“Analogies or relatable stories are an extremely powerful technique to avoid using internal ‘jargon’ and allows the customer to understand the product/service in the real world,” explains Thomas Dredge, sales manager at Particular Audience .

“For example, explaining a display ad across the internet can be likened to a billboard on the side of a building. Sellers often confuse clients by using complicated language. They may believe this makes them come across as more knowledgeable, but it’s not a good way to sell. People buy things they understand. Help them understand.”

Start with a problem (and a deadline)

Your presentation is about the solution you’re offering your prospects, but it shouldn’t start with that solution.

Instead, you should begin with the problem your solution was designed to solve, and the challenges you’re solving for your customers.

“Value Selling is key,” says Bradley Davies, business development at Cognism . “It is important to understand your buyer and tailor their journey to what you can do for them.

“First you need to understand what is motivating them to have a discussion, which allows you to identify their pains and present how your offering solves their pains. Everything presented to a prospect should be based on the value for them specifically.”

The problem, their pains associated with it and your solution should be delivered with a story; a tale that highlights the specific challenges faced by your customers.

You might also choose to tell a story that positions your product as the hero, helping the customer vanquish a villain: their pain point.

Your story, which should be tailored to the prospects in the room, should focus on change rather than their pain point. For example, on a change to their business, industry, or to the technology they use — something that impacts and improves the way they do business.

“If an element of your offering is not relevant, then don't distract them from the important features. It will keep them engaged and help to build their user story,” adds Bradley

Create a sense of urgency around your product: It’s a solution to their problem, but if they don’t act now, they could miss an opportunity. Tell a story about what might happen if your prospect doesn’t change, framing the consequences of not taking action.

Start talking about the solution

You’ve outlined the problem, and, if you’re doing your job, your audience is nodding along. Now it’s time to start talking about the solution.

However, that doesn’t mean you should launch into the features and benefits of your product just yet.

Rather than presenting your product, a good sales presentation draws a picture of what life could look like for a customer once they start doing things differently. How will their business or lives change for the better? How will their world change? Importantly, how will they reduce spending and increase revenue?

Then you can start talking about your solution and the features that can make this brave new world possible. Do this in a few ways:

Position your features against the old way of doing things

Present those features as “superpowers” that will solve your prospect’s problems

Compare those features to competitors’ features

Use a combination of some or all of the above

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Sales presentation ideas

What to bring to your sales presentation

Now that we’ve discussed the story elements of a sales presentation, what should you bring to a presentation?

Most sales presentations are in-person affairs and include visual elements, like a sales deck, handouts, or even, for some products, an in-person demonstration of the physical products (think of the stereotypical door-to-door vacuum salesperson, spilling dirt on the floor just to vacuum it all up).

The PowerPoint presentation

Most sales presentations include a slide deck to help deliver facts, figures and statistics that back up your presentation and help your prospects embrace your solution.

While you don’t have to use PowerPoint, you should use a slide application (like Google Slides) to present your sales pitch deck so that it’s clearly visible to everyone in the room and easy to move from slide to slide with the click of a button.

The best sales decks have a few key elements:

A great cover image or opening slide . Like the story you open your presentation with, your cover slide should grab your audience’s attention.

Data and key points . Charts, graphs, infographics, quotes and other information back up your presentation. Your slides should support your presentation by visualizing data, not repeating what you’re saying. You can get metrics from third-party sources, or (if it’s appropriate) from your own sales dashboard .

Testimonials and case studies from other customers . Quotes and success stories from or information about other customers, preferably in the same industry as your prospects, will act as social proof and go a long way to backing up your claims.

Customized content . While it might seem tempting to use the same content for every presentation, you should personalize your presentation for each meeting. You might want to use your prospect’s brand colors, find data specific to their market or industry, or reference an earlier exchange. There are many graphic design apps, such as Canva, with customizable sales deck examples that you can use to create presentations.

A final slide with next steps . Your last slide should be a direct call to action, offering one or two next steps for your prospects.

A note about text in your sales deck : Keep the slides simple and light on text. Your prospects don’t want to be looking at a wall of words to read. According to data from Venngage , 84% of presenters use visual data in their presentations and there’s a good reason for that: as your audience is listening to you, looking at your sales deck and watching the demo, you don’t also want to overwhelm them with text in your presentation.

Lastly, ensure your sales deck design has a font (and font size) that can be easily read by everyone listening to your presentation.

The product

Nothing sells a product like seeing it in action.

Take the example of Scrub Daddy, a sponge that changes shape depending on the heat of the water. When Aaron Krause, Scrub Daddy’s founder and inventor, presented the product on Shark Tank in 2012 , he demonstrated the sponge cleaning dirty kitchenware and greasy countertops. He also used bowls of water, and two 10-pound weights to show the sponge’s amazing morphic abilities.

The tactic paid off for Krause: Scrub Daddy partnered with Lori Greiner for $200,000, in return for 20% equity in the business and is now considered one of Shark Tank’s most successful products.

So how can you show off your product?

Figure out how to make your product portable

Not all products are easy to demo, so you may have to improvise.

With a physical product, think of the perfect environment for a demo? What would show the product at its best?

With a digital product, make sure you have the technology on hand to show what your product can do (and check beforehand that the tech works). If it’s a mobile app, have your prospects download it. If it’s a platform, it might be best to demo via a projector.

For some solutions, items that are too big to be brought in, or which are location-specific, you may have to rely on a video as part of the presentation.

Depending on the nature of your solution, you may need to hand out materials to the prospects in the room.

This can be as simple as contact information or sales literature, or it can be something that’s part of the presentation, like a QR code that allows them to download the demo on their phones.

Make sure this material is simple, to the point and won’t overwhelm them. You may want to distribute any handouts at the end of the presentation. After all, you want the people in the room listening to you, not reading the information you just gave them.

If you’re doing a presentation, chances are you’re not going alone. You might be heading to the presentation with another salesperson or two.

Whether you’re going solo or as part of a team, it’s important to prepare beforehand. Here are some sales presentation tips for preparation. Here are some sales presentation tips for preparation:

Great sales presentation examples (and why they worked)

Here are some sales pitch examples you can use to inform your next sales presentation; these examples range from great sales decks to presentations and we’ll explain why they worked so well.

The successful demo

Brian and Corin Mullins of an organic cereal startup opened their elevator pitch on Canadian Dragons’ Den in 2015 by handing out samples of their cereal to the dragons. The couple barely had a chance to launch into their stories and numbers before Jim Treliving, a few spoonfuls into his sample, offered them a deal.

Why it worked: The Mullinses knew the strength of their product and led with it, betting (correctly) that it would sell itself.

The data-driven presentation

SEOMoz is an inbound marketing and marketing analytics SaaS. The sales deck the company used to raise funds in 2011 told the business’s story up until then, including how it used the services it sells to boost business, with charts, graphs and other visually presented data.

Why it worked: The deck tells two stories, one about the company itself and another about the way the marketing world has changed. Moz used data to show how it met the industry’s new pain points both for itself and for other companies.

The presenters with overwhelming confidence

When Brian and Michael Speciale went on Shark Tank in 2017 to pitch their product, The Original Comfy, they had very little – no numbers, no inventory; just a prototype of a big fleece blanket/hoodie and video of that hoodie being worn everywhere from the couch to the beach. What they did have was a good product and confidence in that product. Their presentation earned them an offer of $50,000 for 30% from Barbara Corcoran.

Why it worked: Corcoran says she bought in because the Speciale brothers had a good idea, the guts to present it and knew they had to strike while the iron was hot. While you probably should be more prepared for your own sales presentation, the Original Comfy story shows just how important confidence is in a sales presentation.

Sales presentation template

Tailoring your sales presentation

It can be tempting to come up with the greatest sales deck template and use it over and over to pitch a particular segment of your target audience, but remember, personalization is important in sales.

During lead generation , prospecting and sales calls, you know that prospects are more interested in buying if your pitches are tailored to them. It’s the same with your sales presentations, especially if you have an unusual prospect.

Let’s say your product is a CRM that’s normally used by sales organizations, but a human resources department has expressed interest in using it to create a recruiting pipeline.

You wouldn’t use a sales deck with sales-related examples to sell it during the presentation.

Instead, you’d do research about HR challenges, ask your product department to create a template or a demo aimed at recruiting and build your sales deck around that.

Different industries have different challenges and opportunities. If you want to sell to them, you need to address them, which means research, preparation and tailoring your value proposition and key bullet points accordingly.

“To craft the perfect sales presentation pitch,” advises Danny Hayward, Sales Manager at Unruly , “ensure you take care of these three things:

“Asking the right questions before sculpting your sales presentation pitch allows you to tailor it directly to what the client needs in order to help them meet their specific business objectives.

“Learning everything you need to know about your product ensures you know it inside and out, so no stone is left unturned in case you get asked any sticky questions. Finally, rehearsing out loud is fundamental. Record yourself if need be to uncover any sticking points.

“You’ll pick up on nervous ticks and words you might repeat over and over. Once you’ve ironed these out, you’ll get every sale.”

How to nail the sales presentation

You’ve done all your prep and now it’s almost time for the presentation itself. Here are some ways to get the presentation right and close the deal.

Practice confident body language

Presentations usually happen in person, which is why you need to practice strong body language. You want to look relaxed, confident and like you know you’re going to land this deal. (Even if you’re shaking in your shoes).

Here are some ways you can improve your body language:

Eye contact . Make and maintain eye contact. This shows people you’re interested in them and invested in what they have to say.

Stand up straight . Pull your shoulders back and straighten your spine; fixing your posture is an easy way to convey confidence. You’ll also feel better if you’re not hunched over.

Chin up . It’s hard when you’re in front of people, but don’t look at the floor or your shoes. Face straight ahead and make eye contact (or look at the back wall rather than the floor.)

Have a good, firm handshake . Some people judge others by their handshakes. Offer a firm handshake to make a good first impression.

How you can engage your audience

Presentations often take a while, usually 30 to 60 minutes, so you need to be able to keep your prospects interested. There are a number of ways to keep everyone on board, even if you’re talking for an hour.

1. Understand your audience’s attention span

These are the two important parts of every presentation: the beginning and the end. They are the most memorable, so that’s where you want to use your strongest material.

Rather than leading with your product’s features, use the first few minutes of a presentation to briefly introduce yourself, and then lead off the presentation with the compelling story we mentioned earlier, or if your demo itself is compelling, lead with that.

Then talk about product features and pricing. This is important information, but your prospects might have already researched it or can look it up afterward, so it’s fine that it’s occupying real estate in the middle of the presentation, where not as many people will remember it.

Lastly, finish strong. Return to your story, sharing how your product solved an important problem. Then say something like “I’m confident this product can solve your problem.”

2. Be funny

Humor can be tricky, so if you’re not comfortable making jokes or it feels forced, don’t make yourself be funny. If, however, you’re comfortable with it, humor is part of your brand voice and you think it will be well-received by your buyer personas, go for it. Humor can be a good way to connect with prospects, make your presentation memorable and relax everyone in the room.

3. Use a little showmanship

The best thing about a sales presentation is that it lets you show off your product. Unlike a pitch, a presentation lets you pull out the stops, make a splash and showcase your solution.

Use this to your advantage, and be as memorable as you possibly can.

“Get public speaking coaching, even if you are a competent speaker,” recommends Sophie Cameron, Business Development Representative at CAKE. “I once took an eight-week course, and it’s immensely helped my communication skills during a pitch. Just to drive this home, I then coached someone who entered a Santander start-up competition. They won.”

What to do after the sales presentation

So you’ve made it to the end of the presentation. What now?

It’s time to wrap up some loose ends and then close the deal.

Taking questions

Sometimes your prospects will sit through your whole presentation and then ask questions. Other times, prospects may want a question answered right in the middle of a presentation. That’s fine. It means they’re engaged.

If that happens, stop the presentation and take their questions head-on. You want them to know you’re listening to their concerns and taking them seriously. You also should encourage them to share their thoughts and concerns. This is a consultative selling approach that works to build a relationship with your prospects.

Following up

By the end of your sales pitch, your prospect should be ready to come along with you and start the next step of your business relationship.

Outline the next steps of the process. The first could be offering a trial of your product, scheduling a follow-up meeting, or sending over a proposal.

Whatever the next steps are, make sure they’re clearly defined. If you don’t hear from them soon after the proposal, be sure to check back in. We have follow-up email templates that will help you do that quickly and easily.

Final thoughts

It can be tempting to play it safe with a sales presentation by keeping it to a sales deck and a speech – but a sales presentation should be a show-stopper.

The best sales presentation tells your customer’s story, shows data, offers a demo and more. It’s a major undertaking that shows the strength of your product. Done well, it keeps your prospects engaged and will make them want to do business with you.

Tell a story, prove your value, show customers how they can change their business with your solution and you’ll have a winning sales presentation that sparks your customer’s interest and drives sales.

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What is a Sales Presentation: definition, templates, tips

Last updated: 29 November, 2022

What is a sales presentation?

What makes a good sales presentation, how to make a sales presentation, checkout our sales pipeline templates freebies.

Did you know people process visuals nearly 60,000 times faster than text? Our eyes are a predominant perceptual system for information coming from the outside world to the brain. Nearly 90% of the data we receive comes from observing, and images are stored in our memory for a very long time. 

It’s no coincidence that any advertisement, be it a video or a banner, includes both a verbal message and a visual aid. Marketers and sales reps exploit this quality of human memory to boost communication and close more deals. 

In particular — by creating effective sales presentations .

A sales presentation is a short presentation of your solution to prospects or existing customers that aims to persuade them to make a purchase.

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The answer is simple. A winning sales presentation:

But what exactly should it include to get your prospects’ attention, establish good relationships with them, and accelerate the sales process?

We wish there were a recipe for a sales presentation, but there’s no one-size-fits-all recommendation about its ingredients: wording, style, format, or length. 

Still, there are some tips to help your presentation end in a sale: 

1. It’s all about the balanced layout

If you use PowerPoint or other presentation software, it’s better not to put multiple graphs, images, text, and statistics onto one slide. Your audience needs time to focus and concentrate. It hurts when you try processing the slide below, doesn’t it? 

It’s all about the balanced layout

Find the right balance between statistics and visual components. Charts, tables, and bulleted points are great, but if your presentation consists of grouped facts only, it won’t win the heart of your listener.

3 elements are just enough. If there’s more, break the slide into multiple slides instead!

Besides, as a speaker, make sure you don’t seem offhand or uninformed. Clients, especially in the B2B market , appreciate precision and professionalism. For them, the presentation packed with Google images just won’t do.

All the material presented should be of high quality and serve a point.

2. Make it short and sweet

Like any meeting, a sales presentation follows a clear agenda. Nothing will distract a client from the deal more than a prolonged conference that makes them want to escape the room. 

Here’s what works best for us: arranging 20 minutes for the speech plus 10-15 minutes for the Q&A section. This way, a sales presentation won’t take more than 30-35 minutes . It can be even shorter than that. After all, there’s a reason TED talks are 18-minute long.

If you think this time isn’t enough, schedule follow-ups, subsequent sales pitches , or agree to continue via email or phone. 

3. Work on the slide deck

Avoid adding meaningless slides; use an interactive presentation maker instead, to keep your audience engaged.

There are three conventional ones: a title, table of contents, and a “Thank you” slide. Apart from these, it’s up to you how many to include in the sales presentation. Typically, it takes from 1.5 to 3 per single key point. If we consider a 30-minute duration, that’ll sum up into 10-20 slides .

4. Start a sales presentation with a self-introduction and small talk

This is an act of courtesy to introduce oneself and briefly tell who you are. In particular, when you meet new people. Unfortunately, due to the stress, some speakers forget about it.

No less important is to catch the audience’s attention from the very beginning. A story from one’s life, a joke, a surprising fact — whichever magnet you choose, make sure it corresponds to the time and place. By the way, if you want to get inspired, check out these best TED talks ever .

5. End your speech by wrapping up and outlining further steps

Although a sales presentation may not result in a closed deal or a revenue boost (it can but on rare occasions), this is a business process. So, apart from having a good pastime with clients, a sales rep has to mildly yet distinctly drop a hint about how it’s better to proceed with the deal.

Define the purpose

Your speaking style will depend on what you’re trying to accomplish. Remember outstanding demonstrations of Apple’s new launches held by Steve Jobs? Each of these is an example of a winning sales presentation. 

The speaker aimed to persuade buyers that the product was so one of a kind, that it was a matter of life-and-death to purchase it. A speech was corresponding: the majority of time was devoted to demonstrating new UI / UX features, and less attention was paid to the technical side.

To succeed with the presentation, ask yourself what exactly you need to convey:

Adjust your sales presentation based on the audience

Does your audience consist of decision-makers , stakeholders, ordinary employees, or all three at once? What industry do your clients operate in? How old are these people? Is the audience multilingual? Any details are important because they will determine:

Consider means available

Your presentation may be doomed to fail if you don’t consider technical issues. Imagine, you expected to display a growth graph on the big white screen but were provided with a TV screen instead. Your audience won’t be able to see anything, and half of the speech will be lost.

Prepare key points & season them with data

It’s important to have a good understanding of what you are about to present. Let the numbers speak for themselves: prepare a few metrics or statistics and mention these during storytelling. However, don’t turn a presentation into a report — 2 or 3 graphs, tables, or diagrams will be more than enough.

If you plan to share the presentation among participants, you can include links to resources. This way, people interested in more details can retrieve the data.

Design the sales presentation structure

Use a “10-20-30” formula: 

Design the sales presentation structure

A good idea is to google some pre-designed sales presentation templates. This will save time on formatting plus give you useful ideas about the overall structure. Below are websites that might be helpful:

Design the sales presentation structure

If you are in doubt, break your speech down into minute detail and align it with the sales presentation. Also, prepare cheat sheets — the latest price list, full specifications, etc. This way, you will be able to fend off any questions from the public.

Wrapping up

A good sales presentation fits the audience. Put yourself in the client’s shoes and wonder, what would YOU want to listen about? What facts might comfort you, and what questions might arise? With the customer in mind and with thorough preparation, your presentation will be a sure hit.

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11 Effective Sales Presentation Techniques That Close The Deal Faster

Effective Sales Presentation Techniques That Close The Deal Faster

The truth is, to sell a large quantity of  any  product, there are a set of steps everyone needs to follow. It is a process so common that even sidewalk sellers know how to leverage it, yet so many of us salespeople neglect to employ it! To help you put your best foot forward and secure more, more significant deals for your organisation, keep reading to learn the more effective sales presentation techniques alongside identifying the effective sales presentation skills you need to close deals faster. 

What is a Sales Presentation?

To first understand what makes a good sales presentation, it’s only logical to start with the sales presentation definition ;

‘a talk giving information about a product or service that you are trying to sell, intended to persuade people to buy it:’. 

A sales presentation refers to the meeting between an individual salesperson or sales team and a company. They attempt to persuade key stakeholders to close the deal by displaying the offerings’ capabilities, benefits, and features . Sales presentations must align with your prospective clients’ needs to achieve the desired outcome, which usually requires extensive planning and preparation.

Sales Presentations Vs Sales Pitches: What’s the difference?

A  sales presentation  is a more complex version of a  sales pitch  and is usually used for bigger deals that require multiple stakeholders to weigh in on decision making. While still technically a sales pitch, sales presentations are held when the sales process isn’t straightforward, generally for longer sales cycles with lucrative deals that require a product or sales demo. For this reason, sales presentations require a larger budget, not just for the presentation (often around an hour in length) but for preparation, timing and testing. Moreover, salespeople are more likely to present sales presentations as a team rather than as individuals, so understanding the plan requires a group effort. 

Other uses for the sales pitch include the  elevator sales pitch , which many believe is identical to a sales pitch; however, it is not. A sales pitch is a formal type of sales presentation, usually used in long buying cycles. It can take multiple times until a deal has closed. Whereas an  elevator sales pitch  often occurs organically in casual conversation and tells potential prospects what you do, with a statement that positions you as the ideal solution provider in the hopes of leading to a sale.

The importance of effective Sales Presentations

A sales presentation helps salespeople build connections with prospective customers to differentiate their offering from competitors – with the end goal of closing a deal. Sales presentations help set the tone for future interactions as the sales process progresses and is, therefore, a key tool for persuading your prospects that your offering is best suited to their needs.

Also read: 9 Virtual Selling Best Practices To Host Effective Virtual Sales Meetings

What makes an effective Sales Presentation?

An effective sales presentation speaks directly to your audience’s needs, challenges and desires. It captivates their imagination with a compelling story, complete with a solid value proposition and strong call to action that tells the prospect exactly why you’re the best solution provider. Below is an in-depth view of each of the 5 core elements that make an effective sales presentation alongside the ideal sales presentation structure that many companies follow:

Five Core Elements of every Sales Presentation

1. research.

You’re giving a sales presentation because you can provide a solution to a prospect’s problem. However, you mustn’t start the sales presentation with the solution. Rather the problem itself and the subsequent challenges and pain points your prospect experiences because of it.

Prospects don’t care about solutions or features; they care about the value that comes with a suitable solution. That’s why you need to thoroughly research prospects to understand what motivates them. Identifying pain points as you delve deeper into how they operate so that you can and ultimately tailor their journey to provide them insightful and value-based solutions.

2. Storytelling

Stories help prospects to visualise the value of your offering. That’s why it’s helpful to select several stories you can pull from during sales presentations that appeal to the prospect based on individual needs (hence why you need to research their wants and needs thoroughly first!)

3. A Value-Proposition

“What’s really in it for me?” – that’s what every prospect wants to know. Why should they, or anyone for that fact – buy your product or service? Suppose you can’t convince someone else that your product or service offers better value than your competitors. In that case, there is no point in wasting any more time trying to sell your solution because you’ll only ever hear “we’ll be in touch.” Always ensure you arrive prepared with a value proposition that explicitly states how your company’s product or service benefits prospects. For example, you can always follow the “value proposition formula” to get started: [Company name] helps [target audience] with [services] so you can [benefits].

Prospects are more likely to agree to the next steps in a deal if they’ve seen proof that other people benefit from your solution. To achieve this, ensure you have plenty of social proof available from the get-go when meeting with your prospect. Overall, any proof of your solution being effective helps answer the “how can I believe you” question from prospects. To do so successfully, consider sharing evidence such as:

5. A call-to-action

Last but not least, an effective sales presentation requires a strong call to action at the end to compel prospects to take action. Whether that’s to buy now, take the following steps internally, or even start a free trial – prospects need to be told what to do next.

11 Effective Sales Presentation Techniques

With the correct sales presentation techniques to guide you through your sales meetings, you’ll start closing more sales than ever before – check them out below:

1. Use the “Five-Second Rule”

Prospects have less and less time in this competitive and busy digital world. Getting their attention is hard, but keeping it is even harder! That’s why you need to remember and use the 5-second rule – where you have at least fifteen to twenty words to capture your prospect’s attention. Ensure your overall opening statement is strong and directly relates to your audience.

2. Talk like an executive

Ideally, prospects will understand what your sales presentation is about after the first minute. That’s why you need to use the appropriate language to address your audience-not only does it help decision-makers to connect with your solution quicker, but it also shows you’ve prepared to respect their time.

3. Involve key stakeholders

Use your showmanship abilities and have the prospective decision-makers interact with the product you are selling. Ask them to try it out to see how easy it is, how soft it feels, or how fun it is – whatever the defining benefit and feature is. When the customer gets involved, they can imagine themselves using the product, making it easier for them to buy.

4. Present solutions to painful challenges

Place the prospect’s most painful problem at the forefront of your sales presentation and describe precisely how your product or service can solve the challenge they’re currently facing. By doing so, you’re showing them a way out of their current situation and the opportunities they could gain from closing the deal.

5. Make it memorable

When you give a  presentation , people are not going to retain everything that you say. And what most of us do is leave to chance what the prospect actually retains, but by incorporating a few specific elements, you can start to influence what people remember.

So remember to influence what people remember from your presentation, use visuals, text, story and repetition.

6. Prepare valuable insights

Another effective sales presentation technique is to prepare insights ahead of time for your prospects. Insights are accurate understandings of your prospect, your prospect’s business or industry. These understandings are found through research, experience, data and metrics. They aim to develop a stronger relationship with the prospect by providing them with valuable opportunities to optimise and grow their operation in ways they may not have considered beforehand.

Insight Vs Solution Sellers Comparison Chart, What's their sales approach? How are they different? Which is better?

7. Don’t lead with your differentiators, lead to them!

Suppose you lead by explaining your solution’s differentiating factors. In that case, you risk not hitting the mark and resonating with prospects about why this is so important. That’s why you need only to introduce your key differentiators once your overall backstory is clear and the prospect gets it. Think about your key differentiators as a series of breadcrumbs you’re leaving for prospects to connect to understand the overall benefit.

8. Master the art of trial closes

Rather than expecting only one effective sales presentation and saying “Sign here,” you need to get your prospect to make small incremental commitments . A commitment is an obligation or a promise; an incremental commitment would be small, bite-sized pieces, or portions. For example, you could ask your prospects to commit to:

Overall, whatever it is, all you want is to gain a small commitment – something that they can agree to do now that’s relatively easy. The idea is, by getting your customers to commit to small things and to follow through on those small things, you’re one step closer to closing those long, complex deals.

9. Ask for feedback

The easiest way to lose the engagement of any audience is to drone on for long periods. While what you’re saying might be compelling, how you deliver it is crucial. That’s why, rather than talking through your sales deck or bullet points on a slide, you should always begin by notifying decision-makers that questions are welcome throughout the presentation. By asking for and receiving feedback this way, your sales reps will know they’re hitting the mark – or when they need to adapt their approach.

10. Ask for the sale

After the prospect understands the product, how it can benefit them, and how easy it will be to implement , ask for the sale . In the sidewalk seller’s case, he asked by saying, “We have it in red, blue, green and yellow. What colour would you like?” Find out what closes work best for you.

Also read: 15 Top Sales Closing Techniques To Increase Close Rates

11. Ask Again

If the customer poses an objection, overcome their objection and ask again. Don’t give up after 1 “No”. Again, in the case of the sidewalk seller, he asks “What else can you get in Singapore for $10”. The majority of sales are closed after the second or third attempt.

You don’t have to sit on a sidewalk with a loudspeaker blasting your every word to employ these techniques; you need to be able to show people how your product can benefit them. So find a way to get in front of your prospects, and make sure to follow these steps to maximise results.

7 Effective Sales Presentation Skills every sales rep must have

Now that we’ve explored some of the most effective sales presentation techniques let’s also recap the sales presentation skills every sales rep needs to possess to close more deals. Discover each sales presentation skill in detail below:

Research & Solution-Based Questioning

The first stage of preparing for a sales presentation is to research your prospect thoroughly; skipping this preparation will likely result in rejection of your ideas. That’s why all salespeople need to be keen researchers of their ideal customers, gathering answers and insights about elements of prospect’s challenges with  typical solution selling questions  such as:

The importance of Solution Selling Vs Product Selling for effective sales presentations

What does  solution selling vs product selling  have to do with sales presentations? Well, product selling involves merely trying to persuade a customer that the product you sell is a better version than the similar products each of your competitors is selling. This is why salespeople using the product selling method in sales presentations spend much of their time going over feature lists and pricing options with disinterested prospects. 

On the other hand, solution selling requires an alternative way of making a sale. By pinpointing the real-world problem your customer is currently facing- you can explain how the product can solve their problem in the best way possible.

Active Listening

If you want your potential customer to pay attention to what you say, you have to be willing to listen to him first. That doesn’t mean just giving your prospect time to speak, but  actively listening  to what they have to say. 

Sales professionals should be  listening 80% of the time and only talking 20% of the time . Of that 20%, half of that should be asking questions, which leaves only 10% for selling and telling. By focusing intently on what information your prospect is giving you about their problem, you can better formulate a personalised offering that they’re more likely to buy. Rather than spending time preparing an unappealing one size fits all type of deal. 

Overall, sales presentations are most likely to be effective when you display body language that shows you’re listening to your prospect, from subtly head nods to small comments that show you agree and understand.

Also read: 6 Personality Traits of a Good Salesperson Vs. a Bad Salesperson


Study after study shows that  people are more receptive to stories  than almost any other type of communication. Our brains are designed not only to crave stories but to remember them and pass on meaningful ones to others. That’s why incorporating storytelling into asking for the sale is so effective.

You can easily do this by creating a hero with a name, a personality, and a practical problem to overcome. However, you must take great care when deciding how to reflect your intended message. Ensure your storytelling speaks directly to your customers by including the same hopes, ambitions, fears, regrets, and disappointments they too possess.

Ultimately, prospects need to perceive you as self-assured to want to work with you. That’s why all sales reps should be confident not only in themselves but in the solution they are selling. To achieve this, all skilled salespeople will practice and refine their sales presentations well ahead of time to ensure that the delivery is articulate and compelling. Alongside employing body language techniques such as:

Objection Handling

All sales reps should be well versed in  listing common objections  people have given in the past and understand the rationale for each objection. By doing this, reps can frame each response to each objection positively and practice it for the sales presentation. Continue reading to  learn common sales objections  and how to overcome them. 

Interpersonal & Rapport Building

Interpersonal skills are small, nuanced behaviours that help build rapport with prospects that hopefully turn effective sales presentations into a long-term trusted relationship. As the saying goes, ‘People do business with people they know, like and trust’. So, of course, you need to build rapport – and quickly. One of the most effective ways to do this is to use your customer’s name and, probably more critically, know how to pronounce it! It helps you connect with them because they feel heard, and well, people love the sound of their names. However, make sure to use their name naturally in the conversation – otherwise, you’ll come off as indigenous. Other types of interpersonal skills include:

Master the art of engaging virtual sales presentations

Online, prospects are easily distracted, and bonds can be harder to build. Technology can complicate the sales process and add a layer of unwanted complexity.

This can all be overcome with adequate preparation, skills and a proven process that engages prospects during virtual presentations, not put them to sleep.

Here at SOCO®, we help teams master selling through video conferencing tools so sales reps can be as effective online as in-person.

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7-step sales process

7-step sales process: When to use it and when to break it

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Posted by: Lucid Content Team

The 7-step sales process

If you are one of the 2.5 million employees in the United States working in sales, you know that even for the most natural salesperson, it can sometimes be difficult to turn potential leads into closed sales. Across industries, you need different skills and knowledge to prove to your potential customers that your solution is best for their particular problem.

The seven-step sales process outlined in business textbooks is a good start, especially since leading sales ops teams attribute to 60% or more of their total pipeline in any quarter to actively designed and deployed sales plays. The seven-step sales process is not only a good start to customizing it to your particular business but more importantly, customizing it to your target customers as you move them through the sales funnel .

7-step sales process

As the old adage goes, “Learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist.” Once you’ve mastered the seven steps of the sales process you might learn in a business class or sales seminar, then you can break the rules where necessary to create a sales process that may not necessarily follow procedure but gets results.

The textbook 7-step sales process

What are the seven steps of the sales process according to most sales masters? The following steps provide a good outline for what you should be doing to find potential customers, close the sale, and retain your clients for repeat business and referrals in the future.

1. Prospecting

The first step in the sales process is prospecting . In this stage, you find potential customers and determine whether they have a need for your product or service—and whether they can afford what you offer. Evaluating whether the customers need your product or service and can afford it is known as qualifying.

Keep in mind that, in modern sales, it's not enough to find one prospect at a company: There are an average of 6.8 customer stakeholders involved in a typical purchase, so you'll want to practice multi-threading , or connecting with multiple decision-makers on the purchasing side. Account maps are an effective way of identifying these buyers.

2. Preparation

The next step is preparing for initial contact with a potential customer, researching the market and collecting all relevant information regarding your product or service. Develop your sales presentation and tailor it to your potential client’s particular needs. Preparation is key to setting you up for success. The better you understand your prospect and their needs, the better you can address their objections and set yourself apart from the competition.

3. Approach

Next, make first contact with your client. This is called the approach. Sometimes this is a face-to-face meeting, sometimes it’s over the phone. There are three common approach methods.

sales presentation process

4. Presentation

In the presentation phase, you actively demonstrate how your product or service meets the needs of your potential customer. The word presentation implies using PowerPoint and giving a salesy spiel, but it doesn’t always have to be that way—you should actively listen to your customer’s needs and then act and respond accordingly.

5. Handling objections

Perhaps the most underrated step of the sales process is handling objections . This is where you listen to your prospect’s concerns and address them. It’s also where many unsuccessful salespeople drop out of the process—44% of salespeople abandoning pursuit after one rejection, 22% after two rejections, 14% after three, and 12% after four, even though 80% of sales require at least five follow-ups to convert. Successfully handling objections and alleviating concerns separates good salespeople from bad and great from good.

objections flowchart example

In the closing stage, you get the decision from the client to move forward. Depending on your business, you might try one of these three closing techniques .

7. Follow-up

Once you have closed the sale, your job is not done. The follow-up stage keeps you in contact with customers you have closed, not only for potential repeat business but for referrals as well. And since retaining current customers is six to seven times less costly than acquiring new ones, maintaining relationships is key.

sales presentation process

Sales process takeaways: What’s important?

Now that you understand the basic seven stages of sales process development, you can begin to tailor them to your own product or service and customer base. Cut out steps that are unnecessary to your particular business and focus on your customer. You know the rules—now get ready to break them in ways that bring you closer to your customer and turn you from a sales professional to a sales artist.

Whatever approach you take, keep these fundamentals in mind:

Identifying the customer’s problem

You have a product or service you want to sell—now what? Anyone with a problem related to your area of expertise can be a potential customer. You'll need to dive deep into discovery work to learn each buyer's specific goals, needs, and pain points. 

Develop a solution for the customer

Once you have uncovered problems for your products to solve, tailor your offerings to fix those issues—and be prepared to explain how your product truly is a solution for the given problems. Sales engineers can use Lucidchart to visually demonstrate how their product or service solves client problems and makes their lives easier, such as the flowchart below.

before and after example using Lucidchart

Be persistent

Following up isn’t just for after the close to get repeat business. As stated before, most customers don’t buy right away. You have to handle objections and try, try, try again. This is where the seven-step sales process doesn’t account for repeated approaches, presentations, meetings, or phone calls where you handle objections. If it did, it might be a 13-step sales process or a 21-step sales process, or… you get the idea.

Bottom line: stay connected—set up a calendar for repeated contact with potential, present, and past customers so you're more likely to reach them when they're ready to buy.

What are the key steps in the sales process? Whatever your customers need them to be.

Once you’ve tried out a few different approaches, tweaking the original seven steps in the sales process to fit your customers better, document your successes so that you can follow the steps that work best and easily get new reps up to speed as they are onboarded.

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