by Steve Choate for the Buyer Presentation blog series

When you’re meeting with buyers at ECRM events, it’s not only about the content or the product, it’s also about effectively presenting. You have to be able to read the person or persons you are presenting to. You might have the right information in a dynamically-designed PowerPoint®, and know what you want to convey from beginning to end, but if the buyer is disengaged, your message will not make an impact.

What could be the issue? Simply put, it could be any number of things. The buyer is typically going from meeting to meeting and it could be they are tiring from the hectic schedule. Perhaps you forgot to offer them something to eat or drink. Maybe they or you were late, the room is uncomfortable to them, or there are other distractions taking their attention. As the host, if it’s not obvious (like the room is too warm or cool), ask! The buyer will appreciate that you’re trying to make sure they are comfortable and there isn’t anything interfering with their ability to listen and ask questions.There are indicators you should watch for while you’re presenting

There are indicators you should watch for while you’re presenting and change course to fix.

  • If the buyer continues to be distracted, stop and ask if they have any questions or want to skip ahead to specific information.
  • If they seem to be skipping ahead in your printed presentation, you may want to speed up your delivery.
  • If they stop on a particular page of the presentation, ask if you can clarify anything or if they’d like more details.
  • If the buyer appears bored, you may want to abandon your prepared script and ask them to review and try the samples, ask if they have questions, ask them for their impression of your products, or ask for their input on your package, product, promotional campaign, etc.
  • If they appear totally uninterested, you may want to end your presentation and ask them for next steps. Some buyers will not be the least interested in your products and are only meeting with you because they had to based on the show host’s requirements. It would be better to end the meeting early than to drag it out. Thank the buyer for coming and send a follow-up with your presentation. The buyer may have a different attitude once they’re back in their office. Remember not everyone will buy your products. You need to stay encouraged with the real prospects you have.

Remember the basics: speak clearly, make eye contact, and be sure to address and connect with other members of the buyer’s team. Watch for body language and other signals that indicate you need to adjust your presentation to make sure the meeting is a success.

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