Appointments and Presentations

After all the hard work of phoning and writing, you’re going to be aiming for an appointment in person with the key decision maker.  Whether this is a formal or informal presentation, it is critical that you get it right. The first impression is important, and you only get one chance to make it.

It’s often said you should allow a ratio of 10:1 in the amount of time you spend preparing for a presentation.  Ten hours of labour to get a one-hour presentation right.  That sounds like a lot, but you need to take preparation very seriously.  You are investing in a potentially valuable long-term relationship. As with any investment, you need to look at it very carefully before you commit.  Of course, once you’ve got a great presentation, you can easily re-use or adapt it for the next time.

There are four key components in an effective presentation.  This is equally applicable to a simple one-to-one appointment.

  1. Show that you can meet the customer’s key criteria for delivery of the service.  Find out what those criteria are in advance, so you can communicate clearly that you understand the client’s concerns, and that you have appropriate solutions.

  2. Provide evidence that you will be of real value to the client.

  3. Demonstrate facts and added value that distinguish you from the competition.

  4. Motivate your client to employ you. For example, identify some potential benefits and values that you can add that either they have not thought of, or your competitors may not have.  Leave them in no doubt you’re interested!

Because presentations are so important, we’ll come back to the topic in more depth in the final section. Before we leave the subject of sales, let’s bring everything together by looking at a day in the life of a construction industry sales hunter.

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