When Trolling for Business, Don’t Wing It
On Alan Greenspan’s retirement as Federal Reserve chairman, Barbara Hagenbaugh wrote in USA Today:
From behind oversized glasses and sometimes in undecipherable language, Greenspan shepherded the economy through one of the most prosperous periods in U.S. history. In the more than 18 years Greenspan held the reins of the Fed, the economy enjoyed a 10-year economic expansion, the longest in history, and had just two brief recessions that were the mildest since World War II.
Where Greenspan’s verbal delivery was soothing to the point of somnambulism, his successor, Ben Bernanke, is a straight talker who shoots from the lip and tells it like it is.
On the lecture circuit or in congressional testimony, Greenspan’s low-key, meandering approach is okay. But for a new business pitch, it’s imperative to have a compelling speaker like Bernanke and a carefully crafted presentation.
One of the very best speakers and presenters in the marketing field is Ray Butkus, president and CEO of ARGI, and the former president of InfoUSA’s Donnelley Marketing Group. I have had the privilege of seeing Butkus in action—emceeing a business conference where he more than held his own alongside Bill Clinton, Colin Powell and Tom Peters.
One day at lunch, Butkus offered to write a piece for “Business Common Sense” on how to create and deliver an effective sales presentation. After years of sitting through tedious, inept PowerPoint shows and boring people reading white papers in monotone, I jumped at Butkus’ offer.
What follows is a guide that shows how to successfully engage an audience of four, 40 or 400. You’ll want to download it, pass it on to your associates and refer to it again and again.
Developing and Delivering High-impact Sales Presentations
By Ray Butkus
In the sales arena, success depends upon the superior presentation of the facts. In a highly competitive market with an abundance of choice, winning isn’t simply about building the better mousetrap but about how well the marketplace understands and remembers the distinctiveness of your mousetrap versus all others. This phenomenon becomes ever more important as the similarities in products, and as the pervasiveness of common technology, become more and more acute.