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Posts Tagged ‘direct sales presentation’

Have you ever had to give a presentation but you worried about forgetting some important points of what you need to say?  You may think that using cue cards would reflect badly on you, but in reality, you do look better by using cue cards and remembering everything than by not using them and forgetting.  Who would you respect more?  The person using cue cards and does a great presentation or the person who forgets information but does not use cue cards?

Cue Cards

Cue Cards in Direct Sales (Photo credit: iamvisi)

What to Write

One of the most important aspects of using cue cards is not to depend on them 100%.  They are there to help you.  Do not write your entire speech on the card – you should only be writing key points.   For example, if you are in direct sales or doing some other speech about a product, you may want to write the following types of information:

  • Materials Made Of
  • Colours or Sizes Available
  • Price Point
  • Other relevant information – Recycled materials, lifelong warranty, waterproof, etc
  • Organization

Chances are you know what order you want to present your points in.  You may want to have a card dedicated to your order that you can set aside to keep you on track.  Alternatively, it is likely better to number your cards so that you know that they are still in order.  It would be a good idea to go through them briefly before your presentation just to guarantee that they are in the correct order.

Readability

A key point to using cards is your ability to read them.   While you may not have any issue reading the cards when you are at home, you may find that this becomes more difficult when you are in front of a crowd.  For this reason, you will want to take your time writing them out or you may prefer to type and then print them.  You can purchase heavier paper to print on and then cut it down into cue card size pages.  Of course, some people just use full size pages when giving a presentation.

If you still think that using cue cards to help with your presentation is not professional looking, think about the last few times you have attended a presentation.  Is the presenter using cue cards?  Even if they are not holding cards, do they have a PowerPoint presentation up on a screen for the attendees to follow or maybe a hand out for everyone in attendance?  These are still types of cue cards.

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Sometimes when doing an in home party, the crowd can get a bit loud and rowdy and you cannot be heard over their voices.  But fear not, there are a few things that you can do to get their attention again to allow you to finish your presentation.  (Remember, keep it short, people have short attention spans!)

There are a few techniques you can use, so decide what you feel comfortable with, or try them all and see what works best for you.

1)      Talk Quieter – A great thing to do is start talking more quietly.  Chances are someone who is trying to listen will start shushing the crowd because they cannot hear what you are saying anymore.

2)      Play a Game – Depending on the game you play, this will allow them to get a bit of their wildness out or else capture their attention.  Play even if people are not paying attention, and maybe when they see you giving out a prize they will stop talking.

3)      Ask a Question – Ask the group a question about something you said.  Those that were paying attention should know the answer and those that were talking may stop when they realize what is going on.  You could give a gift to those who can tell you what you said.

4)      Hostess – Make sure you tell your hostesses in advance that if the group gets out of control, she will in charge of quieting them down.  Work out some sort of signal in advance or just simply ask her to get her guests quieted down.

5)      Ask for Help – Another idea is to ask one of the talkers to come help you with your demo.  Say that you need an assistant and ask them to come up.  Or you could ask them to try demonstrating a product that you have.  This is especially fun to do if you can hear them talking about how they could do a better job.

6)      Blow a Whistle – Some people carry a whistle that they can blow to get people’s attention back.

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When it comes to your direct sales presentation, most people are not willing to sit there for an hour while you talk.  After about half an hour people will get restless, want to get up to use the washroom or have a smoke break.  If at all possible, you want to make sure your presentation is done by that point.   Here are a few pointers to help.

Keep Your Presentation Short

  1. Limit the Products you Discuss – Do not talk about every product you have.  Each product you discuss takes a minute or two to talk about.  Times that by 10 and you are already at 20 minutes.  You still have hostess benefits, customer specials and other items to discuss.
  2. Top 5 – One of the best ideas I have seen is to talk about the top 5 products.  Talk about why they are your favourites or why they are your customer favourites.  Do not forget the benefits and why people should order them.
  3. Tag Your Product – If your product is the type that you pass around for everyone to see, label it.  I cannot tell you how many times I have passed something around and then people ask what it is as they were not paying attention.  Tie on a label with the name, price, colours and what page it can be found in the catalogue.
  4. Be Prepared – The more prepared and ready for your presentation you are, the easier it will go and the more likely you will be done within your time.  If this means using cue cards, then go ahead and do it.  Practice ahead of time to get an idea of timing and practice for friends to help with nerves.
  5. Set a Timer – A great idea to keep you on track is to set a timer.  You can tell everyone at the party that you promise your presentation will be 20 minutes but for this to happen they have to pay attention and not interrupt.  Set a timer on the oven, on your phone or bring one along.  Set the time on it and start your presentation.  Give a small gift to the hostess and attendees if you do not make it.

Do you have other ideas that you use to make sure that you keep your direct sales presentations short and sweet?  Please share them in the comments!

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