Presentation Creation and Presentation Design can only take you so far – Advice on better Presentation Training technique…

We have all seen generic Powerpoint presentations that make us want to drop off to sleep.  The main issue to be aware of when creating and delivering sales presentations is making sure the audience come away with information that is in line with the original point of the presentation.  If the audience leave the presentation with any confusion, there has been a failure on your part. powerpoint design allows for the communication of large amounts of information, but this can be a challenge rather than a blessing, as there tends to be a temptation to include more than is necessary.

In sales, presenting information properly to prospective clients is vital .  From the initial stages of introducing a product or service to closing the sale, at any stage one cannot risk the audience walking away feeling like their time has been wasted.  Graphics are sometimes added to presentations as an afterthought, but unfortunately or not, many of us have a tendency to engage more quickly and for longer with pictorial content, so this part of Powerpoint design could be more important than you realise.  Using images from the generic clipart folder to fill space, for example, sends a very specific  message about your presentation.  The audience is likely to automatically expect to see a boring  presentation, so they can sit back and not worry about taking it in  too much.  Your audience’s attention could be lost before you even get started.  Buying a CD set of backgrounds and pictures, or subscribing to a good  online picture library, can be a very good  investment.

Powerpoint technology does allow users to create very dynamic and highly technological presentations, but it is important not to overdo it.  Sometimes presenters think that if their presentation looks new and dynamic, it will be well received, but the secret is to tailor the effects to ones that are actually useful to communicate your message, rather than throwing in any extra detail you can in the hope of hitting the ‘wow factor’.  A common mistake of this kind is the overuse of animations and transitions during a slide show – the audience has hardly been able to read what is on the screen before a new sentence flies in, creating something of a visual overload.

powerpoint design is there to make communication easier, and it should be used with this in mind.  It is not necessary to approach sales presentations with an aim to wow your audience with your technical abilities, but equally, stock images and a tired old format will only remind them of all the other Powerpoint presentations they have ever seen.  As with so many other things in life, it is a question of finding the perfect balance.

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