By: Maria Davies
As network marketers, we often have important information to impart and our role in doing so is a major one. Many, many times I have had the pleasure of having people approach me to say how hearing me speak literally changed their lives due to the powerful message and the persuasiveness of the delivery. Most people in MLM are not trained presenters or salespersons but there are a few steps everyone can take to make sure their message has the best possible chance of being well received. Here are my top tips:
1. KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE: Not every pitch will work for everyone so before you go to present the products or the business, whether it's to just one person or to many, do a little research to ensure you're presenting at the appropriate level. If your presentation is too lightweight, you'll bore them; too in depth, you'll confuse them. Either way, they will switch off and your vital words will fall on deaf ears.
2. WIIFM: Yes, that old chestnut, but it's worth repeating as it's so often forgotten. Bearing in mind tip no. 1, what are the challenges faced by this person or this group of people? How does your business opportunity or your product solve their problems? Focus on answering these questions rather than trotting out the mechanics of your offering. Your audience must feel you've prepared your presentation specially for them, even if it's essentially the same one you're giving all the time.
3. CONTINUALLY LEARN AND PRACTICE PRESENTING: One of the most important skills any network marketer can hone is that of becoming an accomplished speaker. It impacts so many other areas of your life as it massively increases your self-confidence. The more professionally you can deliver your message, the more readily it will be received, the more lives you will touch and the more money you will make in your business. Learning to present well is an investment in yourself and can give you the greatest return on the capital you've invested.
4. HANDLE DISSENTERS WELL: One of the major fears I hear from network marketers is that of being faced with doubting prospects or those who dispute what they're being told. Unfortunately, the tendency is to dig in and fight your corner but this can turn the discussion into an argument and work against you, especially if you're giving a presentation in front of a group. When you're faced with negativity, always start your answer with "That's a very good question." and continue with your viewpoint. Wherever possible, turn things around to make your audience right. Download a free "one-sheet crib sheet" on this important subject at http://www.laddersofsuccess.com.
5. SHOW, DON'T TELL: Show the products you're talking about. Let people feel, smell and see for themselves instead of just hearing what they are like. If you're making a presentation about the business opportunity, remember that your company has probably done a lot to make things easier for you. Make sure you get the prospecting materials they offer, show the pictures of the top distributors, talk about them as if they are real people .
6. LET YOUR GUARD DOWN: People buy from those they know, like and trust. How can they do any of this if you won't let them get to know the real you. You don't have to be perfect, you can talk about your own challenges, beliefs, family, hopes and dreams. Doing so gives your prospects more opportunity to identify with you so you can use the similarities to build rapport.
7. STORIES INSTEAD OF FACTS: When we get excited about our products, we often delve into the features of the products, what works and why. This is all very exciting once you've had your first wonderful product experience, but it doesn't make for a very exciting lead-in to your presentation. People want to know about results. They want the bottom line. There's plenty of time to get to the detail later but to start this way could send most of your prospects to sleep (apart from the professors in the audience, of course). The best way to illustrate what your products or business opportunity can do is through telling stories. Use your own story or a case study of someone you know. Use emotive words. Remember, not just the facts, the feelings too.
8. MAKE 'EM LAUGH: When people laugh they feel more relaxed and amenable. Every situation has a humorous side and if you're telling a tragic story your prospects will welcome the respite that comes with a moment of levity. The golden rule is to move people: make 'em laugh, make 'em cry, then they buy. This is something I aim to do in every presentation because it means I've moved my audience emotionally. I appreciate this is an advanced technique, but if you learn how to do it, you'll increase your success rate exponentially.
9. DON'T TELL - ASK: Instead of telling your prospects everything, get them answering questions. Rather than saying "Did you know that only 1% of people retire financially free?", ask them "What percentage of people do you think retire financially free?". This gets your prospects involved and if you word your questions correctly, you're coaching them to the purchase decision rather than having to push them into buying. This is a technique I teach that I've perfected over the years. It works great for network marketers and women and I call it "pull selling".
10. GIVE A REASON TO ACT NOW: Again, not being salespersons, many network marketers give a great presentation and then wimp out without asking for the order. Your prospect's motivation will never be higher than it is at that moment so make sure you use this to your advantage. Think of reasons why they should place their order today. Some possible reasons might be because you are offering a special bonus OR prices are about to increase OR there's an order deadline coming up so they'll get their goods sooner OR you're placing an order too so they'll save on the postage OR you're offering a discount on orders placed today OR you're seeing someone else who could become a distributor and will go beneath them. Whatever it is, tell them, and secure the sale.
About The Author
Maria Davies, Ladders of Success Ltd, is a network marketer and a Professional Sales Presenter and Presentations Coach. She trains others to overcome their public speaking fears and use presentation skills to increase the audience share for their product or service by around 91%. More resources at www.laddersofsuccess.com.