Let’s talk about making effective sales presentations. You have finally nailed that appointment. Congratulations! Now what?

All of that hard work is moot if the sales call itself does not go well. Here are four things to consider on the subject of making effective sales presentations:

  • Prepare—90% of your success is determined by your call prep. Double down on your research, looking at both the company and the person/people you are meeting. Use their website, Google, and LinkedIn.
  • Set an agenda—Commit it to paper. Remember this: The singular goal of the first appointment is to get a second appointment. That is, find a reason to return.
  • Start the appointment—After some small talk (Essential! This builds rapport!), confirm the amount of time the client has to give you. Next, state your agenda and ask the customer what it is he or she wants to get out of this meeting.
  • Listen—You learn nothing with your mouth open. Ask open ended questions and treat this call as an interview. Make good eye contact, take brief notes, and strive to do more listening than talking.

The call has gone well if it results in another appointment and a list of opportunities. Don’t leave without a next step. When you get back to the office, write down everything you can remember about that appointment, follow up with a thank you note, and then keep any promises you’ve made to the customer. You are on your way to bagging this elephant!

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