Archive for April, 2012

Death by Powerpoint

Monday, April 30th, 2012

by Amber BrownAmberNew

A few years ago I was talking to a woman that is a professor at a local college in the Business School and our conversation led to something she referred to as “Death by PowerPoint”. She described this as the tendency to use a PowerPoint to say more than is needed to make a point. She needed explain no more, because having worked in sales for years, I knew exactly what she was talking about — the need for business people to pack 10 pages of fluff into a presentation that could really be done on two or even just ONE piece of paper.

The one sheet concept became very evident to me a few years ago when I was working with a woman in Dallas that frequently sold $100-200K business development deals on essentially a one sheet outline.   When we got to the presentation with the client, I fully expected her to pull out a beautiful graphically appealing presentation with all the details and more. It would be full of pictures, logo’s of the media company and the client, stats and much more before we even got to the meat and potatoes of the presentation. My jaw about dropped when I saw her pull out 3 pieces of paper, one for each of the concepts she was presenting. Finally, someone got it. But even more, the CLIENT loved it. Everything was there to see, no extras.

The reality of today’s business is that we all move too fast with less time than ever to look through massive presentations that don’t get to the point quickly. Presenting on one page makes it very easy for decision-makers to make decisions. How many times have you sat through a seminar with a long PowerPoint and never looked at it again? Don’t let your proposal fall into this trap!

All the key elements, including the $100k price tag, should be on a one page document. Over the years, we’ve coached many of our clients to shed the big presentations and opt for a more concise approach.   It’s ok to bring along a leave behind of all those cool pictures, webshots, stats, etc.

Here’s an outline of Key Elements to include in a One Sheet presentation:

  • Client Objective
  • Program Overview
  • Key Elements
  • Timing
  • Media Exposure
  • Investment

It’s simple and it works.   I’m confident if you asked any executive if they’d rather see a 7-10 page PowerPoint versus an executive summary of the same concept, they’d vote for the latter.

Don’t get me wrong, PowerPoint certainly has a place. Those of you that receive training from Morrison and Abraham know our love affair with it. But be cautious to rely on it when it may not be needed in presentations with clients. Slim down your presentations and don’t fall victim to Death by PowerPoint!

Sponsorship Selling – The Importance of Thinking Beyond the “Booth”

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Sue Novicki

by Susan Novicki

I am working with many of our clients on events that they have to sell for 2012. We are talking to everyone from automotive manufacturers to insurance companies to banks to wireless telecom to consumer packaged goods companies.  As many of you know, sponsorship selling is projected to increase this year with many companies intending to either increase or maintain their sponsorships.

With this in mind, it is important to think about how to go after this business and generate the best revenue you can for both you and your client. Many times I see sales reps target leads for an event that they have on the calendar and many times they are working too close to the event to generate substantial revenue.

First, make sure you are looking at your Map of Events for the year and planning far enough out so that you are working 3-6 months prior to the event. With this in mind you are going after larger dollars.

Also look at the companies you are targeting and get to them while they are in the planning stages for their fiscal year. In their fiscal year starts in June, for example, they are planning right now.   If it is a calendar year, start talking to them in August or September. When companies are in the planning stages, you have the advantage of getting larger dollars for an event or sponsorship.

Make sure you do your homework on the company ahead of time. Do a little research so you know what the company has sponsored in the past, what new products or services have been introduced recently and what direction the company is focused on as far as target customer.

Create questions to ask to make sure you are unearthing the need so that you have a clear objective of what the client is trying to accomplish – sometimes they may be looking at a number of objectives that one of your events can fulfill.

Customize the proposal – don’t just send the “package” to them.

Finally, realize the value of the sponsorship that you are trying to sell – it is not just about the number of attendees but the quality of the attendees. Talk with confidence about the event or sponsorship and don’t make assumptions when doing the need analysis or presenting the proposal.

And most important, focus on creating a program that has strong activation for your client. Remember, sponsorships without activation are like toys without batteries.