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  • Writer's pictureKevin Maples

Crazy Idea: A B2B Sales Presentation without Slides?

Updated: Jan 23

Here's a crazy idea: Give one presentation without slides. You'll learn so much!

The sales rep with whom I was riding along looked at his iPad and panic set in? 2% battery and the charger was forgotten at home! Doing the call without a digital sales aid was unthinkable, crazy! Luckily, I carry an extra charger. I am happy to value where I can!

But I know the panic. A few years ago, I was forced to give a presentation without my slide deck. The hotel conference room had a broken projector. Nothing could be done. We didn't have time for hotel tech support. I started to sweat.

I gave the presentation. Rocky at first, but the room was with me. So I gained confidence. The questions were good, the room was engaged. Where there was a vital graphic to share, I walked my laptop around the room for all to see. This gave an added pause for participants to ask thoughtful questions.

I thought it was a good meeting. Great? Well, the absence of a presentation on the screen was too radical for many in the room, and that unfortunately was the meeting's biggest takeaway.

But I learned 3 things from having no digital support.

1. You realize , if you have done your job preparing, that you know your material. You'll be able to land your key points in a more human, natural way.

2. Your audience actually pays attention to you, and not the screen You will be able to better discern if they are following you and establish synchronicity.

3. You will become a better listener. You'll be less concerned about getting through the slides than staying attuned to your audience's needs.

In sales, digital aides are great! iPads have enabled reps to show rich multimedia content to enhance arguments.

But try encouraging your team to go without it just once to ensure that it hasn't become and enabling crutch.

Such exercise will also reveal where you truly have content gaps.

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