Public speaking for business has a specific quality. You want your audience to take a specific action. How can you use your presentation to make that happen?
Public speaking is important in every business setting. Very often in business, you will need to deliver a proposal or a pitch to a potential client. In these situations, you will want to do more than just display your technical expertise, you will want to persuade your audience to take some action. Certainly, you will want to include some technical information to inform your audience about the product or idea you are presenting. But, keep in mind that the ultimate outcome you want is to sell a product or an idea. By preparing your presentation properly you can achieve your objective of informing your audience and encouraging them to take action.
There are four important questions to answer in your preparation:
1. What is your purpose?
2. Who is your audience and what are their needs?
3. What is your main message and how can you best support it?
4. What definite action do you want the audience to take?
It is important to start by defining your desired outcome. Do you want the audience to buy your product or service? Do you want them to take a specific course of action? Are you looking for agreement or approval? Be specific about what you want your proposal to accomplish.
Analyze your audience. I have written a blog series and several articles about the importance of audience analysis and the steps to do this successfully. Audience analysis is the cornerstone to successful presentations.
Design your main message around the wants and needs of your audience. Frame the features and benefits of your product, service or idea around the wants and needs of your audience.
Be sure to tell your audience exactly what you want their course of action to be. This is where presentations often fall flat. The presenter doesn’t tell the audience the action they want them to take. Be very clear about this. Tell them exactly what you want them to do – it will be much easier for them to do it.
The classic advice in delivering a proposal is
1. Tell them what you’ve got.
2. Tell them what it’s going to do for them.
3. Tell them what you want them to do.
If you prepare for your presentation with these ideas in mind, you will be on the road to delivering a successful presentation.