If you have ever been surfing TV at night and came across a pony-tailed, highly-enthusiastic man selling exercise equipment, that is Tony Little. How good is he? Tony’s infomercials and stints on HSN have generated over $3 billion in sales (yes, that’s with a B.) So when Tony speaks about how to make a good presentation, we should listen.
Here is what he says: “Enthusiasm sells!” If you have ever seen Tony on TV, you know from whence he speaks. He’s highly enthusiastic, and while that is of course a big part of his personality, Tony says it is also a big part of his success. He suggests that being highly enthusiastic is infectious and that it infuses people with the confidence to buy from you.
The Speaking Secrets of Steve Jobs
Another one of the top presenters of our time was the late, great Steve Jobs. Jobs did all sorts of things well, and one of those was making presentations. In fact, one of the best books you can pick up on this subject is The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs. It is chock-full of all sorts of good ideas, but two in particular warrant your attention right now:
- Don’t stuff your deck with words: A Steve Jobs keynote was conspicuous by the lack of words and bullet points in his PowerPoint presentations. What you saw instead where pictures, and even then, just a few. This forced people to pay attention to what he said and not be reading the slide.
- Keep them in suspense: Jobs would always tease the audience and then say, “just one more thing” and then make the big pitch. Remember, a great presentation, like a great story, has a beginning, middle, and end.
Which brings me to,
The Speaking Secrets of Tony Robbins
Tony Robbins. Somehow, some way, I ended up a Tony Robbins event in the mid-80’s. And at that event, he made me believe that I could walk on hot coals. And I did. To this day, I still don’t know how that happened.
But what I do know is that Tony Robbins is a gifted presenter and salesman. Tony says that a key ingredient to any great sales pitch is the story. ”People love to hear stories,” he says, and if the story has a point relevant to the point you are trying to make, they will hang on your every word to hear the outcome.
And after that, they will end up buying from you (or maybe walking on 20 feet of burning embers) but either way, you will have made a great impression.