Although creating and developing a great product or service is critical to launching and sustaining a successful business, it’s also imperative that entrepreneurs have the ability to attract customers, new clients, and investors. This is why it is important for entrepreneurs to learn how to present their business to others in a clear, cohesive manner and master the art of the pitch. In doing so, they can drive sales, negotiate successful deals, build beneficial partnerships, and maintain an edge over the competition. The caveat, however, is that mastering an effective business presentation is easier said than done.
To help business owners develop and strengthen their business pitch skills, on Wednesday, Black Enterprise kicked off the Entrepreneurs Summit with a workshop titled “Networking Session: Mastering Business Presentations.” During the session, best-selling author, entrepreneur, and marketing guru Jonathan Sprinkles shared his business presentation best practices, to equip entrepreneurs with the tips and tools needed to masterfully execute quality pitches of their own. He also offered stellar advice that can help increase the profitability of one’s business.
Here are a few takeaways from this informative workshop with Jonathan Sprinkles:
1. “They Won’t Hear You Until They Know You”
When you are giving a business presentation, you’re not just selling a product or service. You’re also trying to persuade the other party to invest time, money, and resources into you as a person.
To do this effectively, Sprinkles claims that you can build trust with the other party by not only discussing what it is that you do, but also articulating why you are doing it.
“People don’t care about how much you know, until they know why [it is that] you care,” Sprinkles says. So, during your business pitch, it is important to be especially mindful when talking about your business’ purpose and why you do what you do.
2. Your Uniqueness Brings Value
Everyone has a special gift, talent, or strength that sets them apart from others. However, the ability to effectively speak to the extent of your personal uniqueness can also bring more value to your brand by helping it stand out from the crowd of competitors.
3. “Tension Makes People Pay Attention”
Every successful business presentation will clearly communicate the answers to two imperative questions:
- What’s at stake with your business?
- What’s in it for who you are pitching to?
Sprinkles spoke about leveraging the concept of “opportunity cost” when giving a business presentation, which is the price that one will have to pay for your product or service, should they refrain from taking action now. He also mentioned that business pitches should create a sense of “F.O.M.O”—or fear of missing out—in those who are being presented to.
All of this will ultimately increase your presentation’s potential for resonating with your audience on an emotional level. This is important because people are more inclined to remember how you made them feel, before recalling what you actually said. So, to make your pitch memorable, your content’s delivery should aim to intentionally trigger certain emotions in your audience.
4. The J-Curve
Referred to as the “J Curve,” Sprinkles shared a three-step strategy for structuring a presentation’s delivery, so that it’s effective enough to ultimately close the deal. According to Sprinkles, the progression of your business pitch should:
- Make the audience sick: People don’t buy where there is no need. That is why you must open their eyes to their weaknesses and vulnerabilities.
- Make the audience very sick: Prove that their life will become even worse, if they don’t buy into what you’re selling.
- Make the audience feel better: Close the deal by showing them how your product or service will help them.
5. Don’t Tell Them What You Do; Tell Them What You Just Did
Lastly, Sprinkles stressed the significance of also highlighting your recent accomplishments or major achievements during your business presentation. This can help spark more interest in your business, and incite further curiosity about who you are and what it is that you do among those you are presenting to.