At one point in time, we’ve all sat through a bad presentation. Whether it was a boring college lecture or a bad sales pitch, there’s nothing worse than sitting through a presentation and just wishing it would be over already. What’s possibly even worse than that, though? Being on the other side of things as a B2B sales rep and constantly facing rejection.
The last thing you want to hear when you’ve worked hard on a B2B sales presentation is, “sorry, I’m just going to need more time to think this over.” Hearing this over and over again, it never gets easier. Unfortunately, if your B2B sales deck has too much text, bad content, no images, and no unique differentiators, you probably won’t sell as much as you’d like.
Selling to other businesses is not an easy feat. Fortunately, with an excellent B2B sales presentation, you can start delivering killer sales pitches and closing more deals. If you want to create the perfect sales presentation for your B2B business, here’s what you need to do.
1. Know Your Target Audience and Their Needs
The first step to developing a killer sales presentation is understanding your target audience. If you don’t take this into consideration, your whole pitch will be off. According to Forrester Research’s Buyer Insight study, only 13% of customers believe salespeople can demonstrate an understanding of their business challenges and how to solve them. Buyers must come first.
Before you even start building your sales presentation, define your who and how. Who are you pitching to and how are you going to solve a problem their business currently faces? When you understand your ideal customer perfectly, you can better tailor your message to that audience.
So, before you make a pitch deck, first identify who you are pitching to and ask yourself:
What are their main pain points?
Who are their customers?
What solutions or products are they currently using?
Once you identify your who, determine how you are going to solve their problems.
What’s in it for them?
How can you solve a problem they currently have?
What makes you better than the competition?
Answering these questions before you create a pitch deck will help you target your message clearly to your ideal customer, therefore making each pitch you deliver that much better.
2. Hit On Key Points Without Using Too Much Text
One of the keys to a great sales presentation is to not clutter your slides with too much text. Every slide should have a good mix of text and images. Also, make sure the colors, fonts, and visual elements in your presentation match your branding.
Here are the slides that should be included in every great B2B sales presentation:
Start your presentation by listing the key points that will be discussed in the meeting. Giving the potential customer an agenda maps things out clearly and eases them into the presentation.
Introduction: Company History + Who We Are
It’s important to start your presentation by telling the audience more about your company. You can’t just jump right into products and services without telling them a little about your history, who you are, what you’re about,
Identify the Problem
A key component of every sales presentation should be to speak to a pain point. If you know your ideal customer (which you should if you’re in B2B sales), then you already know what their pain points are. You understand why they may need your products or services. Use this to your advantage. Identify a problem, use statistics to back up these facts, and use it to lead into your value proposition.
Then, they could use this problem (accompanied by an alarming statistic) to lead into slides talking about their top-notch cybersecurity services. Now that the customer sees a problem, they see more of a need for these types of services, giving them a reason to buy.
Before diving right into products or services, you should next incorporate a ‘why us?’ slide. Sure, you may offer a solution to a problem, but why should a customer want to work with you? What makes you unique? What value can you offer? This slide can help a customer understand why they should work with you instead of a competitor.
Any B2B sales presentation must include 1-3 slides talking about products or services. Obviously, the whole point is to sell your offering, so you’ll want to highlight this more than anything. Clearly explain what your product or service offering entails, but keep it short and sweet. Don’t clutter slides with text, use bullet points, and include imagery when possible.
Meet the Team
If you’re selling a service rather than a product, it’s a good idea to include a ‘meet the team’ slide. Showing a customer the team they’ll be working with should they choose to partner with you helps them to better picture themselves as your partner.
Process and Pricing Information
If you’re selling a service, clearly explain to the customer what the implementation or onboarding process looks like. It’s likely that things aren’t going to go from 0 to100 in the blink of an eye, usually, there is a process in place for how a new client is brought on as a customer. Tell them what this looks like, what pricing options are, what they can expect, and inform them of any actions they’ll need to take.
Conclusion and Next Steps
Be sure to keep it short and sweet and quickly wrap up key points in the last few minutes of your presentation. Your last slide should clearly define the next steps and segway into the next phase of the partnership. Whether this means a second meeting, a phone call, or a follow-up email recapping the pitch, make sure you have a plan for what the next step is. Also, make sure that you’ve answered all questions before ending any sales pitch.
3. Use Case Studies and Stats to Build Credibility
Two ways to spice up your sales presentation: case studies and powerful statistics. Even a customer who has agreed to a meeting with you is still going to have their doubts. This is why you have to build credibility and show the customer why you’re a company that can be trusted.
Case studies. Case studies show potential customers the success that you’ve had with other businesses similar to their own. By telling a story, you help the potential customer visualize themselves using your products or services. This creates a strong connection and gives them more of a reason to buy.
Statistics. It’s proven that people remember stories more than data, but that doesn’t mean data isn’t important. Think of data as supplemental. A powerful statistic can be shocking or surprising to a potential customer. For example, if you’re a commercial roofing company pitching to a business and one of the first slides has a stat stating that energy-efficient roofs can save thousands of dollars, you’ve now got the customer’s attention. They may think, “wow, I can really save that much?” This gives the customer a reason as to why they may want to work with you.
Building credibility and trust throughout your presentation is a key part of B2B selling.
4. Practice Your Sales Pitch, Don’t Memorize It
Once you feel like your pitch deck is complete, it’s important to practice it. This doesn’t mean memorizing each slide word for word, but rather, delivering your pitch in a way that feels natural. Use slides to guide your thoughts and words instead of using them as a script. Preparation is key to a great sales presentation, but this means to practice, practice practice, not memorize. Make sure you are comfortable with the material and develop such confidence that you feel you could give the presentation without even looking at the slides. This will result in a natural sales pitch and a more engaging conversation with the potential customer.
A great way to get better at pitching is to re-watch yourself giving a pitch and take notes on how you could have improved. If you’re giving a virtual B2B sales pitch, record the presentation and reference it as training material. COVID-19 has changed B2B lead generation drastically; most sales reps are now having to give virtual sales pitches anyways. So, now is a good time to record your presentations and practice getting better.
5. Ask Questions and Create Conversation
If you’re the only one talking during your sales pitch, you’ll quickly bore your audience and lose their attention. Engage your audience by asking questions and letting them talk. Asking questions not only helps you keep your audience on their toes, but it’ll also help you as the B2B sales rep. The more you can learn about the customer, the better you can tailor your pitch to fit their needs. And it will make your follow-ups much more effective because asking questions will help you understand your customer’s business. So, don’t read through your presentation like a robot, engage the customer, and create conversation throughout the entire pitch.
6. Clearly Define Next Steps and Follow Up
Even if you’ve delivered the perfect B2B sales pitch about your company and your products or services, your job isn’t done. Once you’ve informed the customer, it’s critical that you outline the next steps for them. The entire point of a B2B sales presentation is to hopefully convince an interested customer to purchase your product or service. If they’re not 100% clear on how to make a purchase, you’re likely not going to sell to them. Make it totally clear what the next steps look like; what actions do they need to take? What will the beginning of your partnership look like? What results can they expect to see? In addition, if the customer isn’t quite ready to buy at that moment, be sure to schedule a follow-up phone call or appointment.