The Difference Between a Persuasive and an Informative Presentation

There are a number of reasons as to why experts host presentations. The main type of presentations held can normally fall into two different categories, persuasive and informative.

What Is The Purpose of a Persuasive Presentation?

Presentations can be held in order to promote a particular service or product, presentations such as these would fall into the persuasive category. The reason for this is that the presentation would be hosted to explain the benefits of the product, message or service. Within the presentation, it would be up to the host to highlight then benefits while still ensuring that rich content that the audience wants to hear is being delivered.

The success of such a presentation can be measured by how many people make a purchase, employs a service or join a cause. Similarly, if the presentation is for a proposal, then the success can be determined as to whether or not you received the approval you need.

What Is The Purpose of an Informative Presentation?

Informative presentations tend to deal with training or education. There can be elements of a persuasive presentation intertwined. For example, a teacher may need to persuade his students that the subject is worth learning about. But the main objective of such a presentation is for people to absorb and retain information.

Research can be another important aspect of an informative presentation. A business may have carried out market research in relation to their business, and a presentation could be held to deliver such information to members of staff. As a result of the presentation, a decision would then need to be made in light of the information. A successful presentation of this type can be measured by the outcome of the decision, and how it was implemented using the information to hand.

The success of such presentations can be difficult to monitor unless there is a test or exercise that follows the presentation. In this regard, if the test results are high, then you can assume that your informative presentation was a success.

Although both presentations are different in what they have to offer, they do share similar characteristics. For example, both should have a clear goal as to what they want to inform their audience about. With this in mind, it is important that the presentation is tailored around your audience and they are able to fully understand your content. If you happen to host a presentation that falls into either category, you should ensure that you encourage the audience to participate by adding a question and answer session, or something similar.

Both types of presentation are also likely to involve a problem and solution section. Within a persuasive presentation, it is likely that the host will present a problem, then tailor their solution with a product or service. The problem and solution section may not seem so apparent within an informative presentation, but there could be a section that focuses on overcoming problems. For example, a business may highlight the problem of poor customer service.

Outlining the benefits of any product or service you are selling is paramount for persuasive presentations. Customers like to have a clear outline of how your product or service can solve their problem and what they can gain from their purchase. Outlining benefits is not at the forefront of an informative presentation, but the content itself may be beneficial to your audience, so in this regard, you would also look to sell the benefits of the very information you are relaying to your audience.

Emotions play a large part of persuasive presentations. In fact, studies have shown that very few people are able to make a purchase without feeling good about it. So when it comes to delivering a persuasive presentation, your ability to ignite human interaction and emotion should be one of your main focuses. Evidently informative presentations can also have emotion involved, but this can differ depending on the presentation.

Trust is the drive behind both types of presentation. If your audience doesn’t have faith in you, then they won’t have faith in your product. As you can imagine, a lack of faith can lead to a lack of sales. In order for the audience to commit to your product, then they must be able to trust the presenters, and feel comfortable that other audience members feel the same. Testimonials, reviews and previous successes are a large driving force behind a person’s trust.

Many presentations will be tailored to a specific audience, so you may find that different presentations may include different factors from both informative and persuasive presentations. Both types of presentation should include a call-to-action towards the end. This could be to buy a product, contribute or for the audience to put what they have learned into practice.

Graphical Presentation Of Tabular Data – Histograms (Part 2 of 5)

This is the second in a series of articles aimed at showing the benefits of presenting tabular data in a graphical format.

The first article explained how to carry out a simple survey which could be completed by children, the results being presented in a tabular form. Although the results could be reorganised to produce tables showing the data in different formats, such as by name in alphabetical order or in ascending order of height, the interpretation of the data is not immediate to the person reading it and conclusions may not be easily drawn. This not only causes difficulties for both the surveyor and the reader, but can be a little discouraging for the surveyor in trying to determine what they have achieved from their efforts.

We therefore need to display the data in an alternative format so that more can be achieved from the data gathered. One way of doing this is to use a graphical representation known as a histogram.

Histogram

A histogram is the best graphical method to use for plotting and displaying continuous data such as height or weight. It is not so good for displaying data known as discrete or discontinuous, where the subject has distinct survey criteria such as hat sizes or colours.

Let us assume that the child’s height survey, already mentioned in article one, consisted of a sample of 25 children all of the same age. The smallest child was 1.105m tall and the tallest height was 1.687m.

The visual representation of data for a histogram is a chart where the data values are represented by vertical columns whose heights are equivalent to each of the values of one of the survey’s criteria and all these vertical heights are proportional to each other. The width of the column is immaterial but is usually the same for each value displayed. It is preferable that the survey data is recorded in ascending order of height so that the smallest child’s height is recorded first.

Using our survey example above, the vertical axis, or as it is more commonly known, the ‘y axis’, would represent the height of each child within the survey and would range from 1.0m to 1.7m in ascending order. All the surveyed height values of 1.105m to 1.687m would be contained within the chart. The horizontal axis, or ‘x axis’, would represent the 25 names of the children in the sample.

For each child’s name a point is plotted on the chart corresponding to the height of the child. A vertical narrow column is then drawn above the child’s name up to the height point. This column can be given its own colour to differentiate it from its neighbours on the chart. All the remaining children’s heights are plotted in a similar way. If two or more children have the same height then the columns are drawn adjacent to each other. This is where using different column colours or patterns makes identification easier.

This simple histogram will be a series of vertical columns, the shortest on the left and the highest on the right. It will be clear from this chart which child is the shortest, which is the tallest and where each child is placed within the survey. It will also show in which height ranges the children’s heights are concentrated. As stated previously, the survey results will be of greater benefit for interpretation if all the children were about the same age or in the same class at school. Different colours could be used for boys and girls to show how their height ranges varied, if at all.

This form of data presentation is more pleasing to the eye and understandable than any of the spreadsheet tables. The person presenting the survey will find their output much more satisfying and should have greater pride in their achievement.

The next article in this series considers the use of vertical column, horizontal bar and cylinder charts. Details will be provided as to when they should be used, how they are constructed and the benefits that they can provide, both to the presenter and their audience.

MLM Training – How To Conduct Professional And Powerful MLM Or Network Marketing Presentations?

No more draggy boring opportunity meetings!

Man… I just had to endure another 2 hours in a hotel seminar room listening to some guy going on and on and on about his view of how wonderful his life became after joining his MLM company and how everyone else in the world lived in hell working for someone else….

And the worst part of it was, it took him like 30 minutes before he finally left the stage and got someone else up to blast through the company background, products and pay plan… yawn…

Then finally some less than interesting nor motivating testimonials from people who obviously were asked to come up on stage just before the meeting and they were just trying to blurt off whatever they could think of out of the blue whilst trying to fight off the nervousness of being on stage for the first time in their life!

If you ask me, that is not what we call a professionally organized business opportunity meeting!

And when I turned around and scanned the room to check out the profile of the audience listening to the presentation, my eyes started to roll…

You see people dressed in clothes like they just woke up from bed, droopy eyes with no spark of energy in them and 6 year old kids sitting in the chairs with the “why is mommy forcing me to sit here like an idiot when I can be watching tv at home…” look on their face!

I’m about to laugh my head off. Lucky for me, I was just a participant, part of the audience, and I seriously pity the speaker who’s trying his very best to keep the audience’s eyes pinned on him whilst newcomers keep entering the room from the unbelievably irritating doorway which is right smack in the middle of the seminar room where everyone in the room can have a good look at “who’s the next person coming into the room?”

I mean… why would anyone want to spend quality dollars on a high class hotel seminar room for a professional business presentation, but waste it all because they made all those mistakes that I mentioned above?

To me, that’s just absurd.

But the sad fact is, so many distributors and even company management are still organising these types of MLM or Network Marketing business opportunity presentations without thinking through their heads or asking experienced professionals for some sound advice first.

So how do we conduct professional and powerful MLM or Network Marketing presentations?

Well, if I do a quick survey with 100 distributors in any MLM company and ask them this question,

“Would you like a powerful, short 45 minutes presentation or would you rather sit through a draggy, long winded 2 hour presentation instead?”

Guess how many will choose powerful and short?

My guess is everyone.

And that is so true in this day and age when people are just sick and tired of long winded 2 hours talks or seminars.

So my 2nd question will be, “What would you like to hear most in those 45 minutes?”

Everyone will give different answers, but it always boils down to,

“WIIFM – What’s In It For Me?”

and “What do I have to do to succeed?”

Yup, it’s that simple. People don’t want to hear your life story or your enlightened view of life, they only care about themselves!

So the trick is to show them the benefits that your opportunity can provide.

Here are some key points you must have in your presentation flow and the time you should spend introducing them.

1. (5 minutes) YOU – that’s right! What can you do to help them achieve their dreams? (Personal background, how you got to know about your company etc)

2. (5 minutes) YOUR UPLINE TEAM LEADERS – What can your upline team leaders do to help them achieve their dreams? (Success track record, leadership experience etc)

3. (5 minutes) YOUR COMPANY – How can your company management team help them achieve their dreams? (management experience, corporate background, logistics support etc)

4. (5 minutes) YOUR PRODUCTS – How can your products help them achieve their dreams? (be it the breakthrough technology gives you better health, younger skin or greater cost savings or whatever…)

5. (10 minutes) YOUR PAY PLAN – How can your pay plan help them achieve their financial dreams? This is the most important part, as people are here for a business opportunity which means they need to see the money! (You should be able to let people see that they can make big money within 10 minutes, otherwise your pay plan is just too complicated, otherwise just touch on the key points and don’t go into the details unless they are interested, they can find out more later)

6. (5 minutes) YOUR SUPPORT SYSTEM – How can your support system help them learn the ropes faster and do the business easier? (Your website tools, marketing kits, training support etc)

7. (5 minutes) YOUR PERFECT TIMING – Why is their timing perfect to join your opportunity? (Either you are in prelaunch or approaching momentum phase in your local market or globally. Young companies can talk about early stage positioning and older mature companies can talk about opening new markets or new product categories.)

8. (5 minutes) YOUR FAST START SUCCESS PLAN – This is the final kicker that’s going to let them see the light. Give your audience a dummy proof step by step action plan that is so simple anyone can do it and it’s guaranteed to make them fast cash at the start. If they persevere and keep following the plan, they will definitely see great rewards in the near future. (For example, can you give out 1 dvd a day, or pass a magazine out a day, or invite 1 person a day to view your website etc)

Once you have run through all 8 steps above, be it in a one on one table top presentation, a small group home meeting or a big group hotel meeting…

Your final step is to make a call to action by popping the big question…

“Are you A, B or C?” (A- big business builder, B- small business builder, C- try the products first)

After that, time for Question and Answers. This is really the most important part of the presentation because this is when the really interested people start clearing their doubts!

If you are not experienced enough to handle group questions, make sure you have more experienced uplines around to help you otherwise you will get bombarded with tough questions and you will look very bad. So make sure you have backup.

In my experience, once everyone clears up their doubts and feel that they do not have any more questions to ask, it just means that they are either ready to join or not.

So just pop the A, B or C question again and bring out the signup forms. Then tell them what to do.

“So for those who wish to join our team now, just fill up those forms! You can use credit card, cash or cheque.”

Here are some key points to take note when planning your group meeting:

1. Venue

a) Home Meeting – Make sure your home is tidy and presentable, no noisy kids, no noisy pets, no tv, phone or radio disturbances.

And get a small white board, flip chart or if you can afford it, a home projector system that attaches to your laptop with powerpoint.

If your company has a good DVD, get a DVD player so that you can show the DVD on your TV.

Do not serve heavy meals, alcohol or anything that will make your audience experience the “zzz” monster. Just some light refreshments and water will do.

b) Hotel seminar room meeting -

Check the venue layout and make sure the stage and seating capacity is OK and does not look too shabby.

Check with the hotel management that you will have proper equipment present, like audio/visual, whiteboard, markers, whiteboard erasers, paper and pencils for guests, refreshments or at least some iced water for guests.

Before the meeting, make sure the hotel management have put a notice in the lobby that directs guests towards your function room.

Have a registration counter set up and get some helpers to welcome guests and ask them to sign in so that you know who invited them and also so that you can tally the total number of guests vs members later on.

If there are multiple entry doors to the function room, lock up the doors that are near the stage or speaker’s stand to prevent guests from coming in and out from those doors, distracting the audience away from the main speaker.

Finally make sure that the airconditioning is powerful enough so that guests will not feel too warm and drift off into a slumber halfway through the presentation.

All leaders should have VIP seats reserved in front of the room instead of standing at the back, so that they can be the first to applaud and respond to the speaker, thus motivating the rest of the room to participate.

Now, when guests arrive, make sure you have helpers who will direct them to fill up the second row onwards, so that they do not clog up the rear rows leaving the front rows empty. That will make it difficult for other guests to find seats.

And please, no reservation of seats for guests who are late! That is such an irritatingly bad habit. And it’s totally unprofessional! So just make sure that the leaders inform their guests that if they are late, seats will not be reserved, as most of the time, it’s the leaders themselves who hog the seats for their late guests! I have even seen leaders fighting for seats for their guests… how ugly that can be!

All guests who are late should be asked to sit at the back instead of bringing them to the front rows while the speaker is presenting, so that they do not distract the audience.

Before the meeting starts, play some light but up tempo music in the background so that the guests feel energized and pumped up for an exciting presentation.

And just before the speaker comes up on stage, have someone play the role of emcee to…

1. welcome the audience and thank them for investing their valuable time to attend our presentation today

2. ask them to take out their phones and switch them off or to vibration mode, because the presentation is going to be recorded (this reason always works!)

3. Then introduce the main speaker for the presentation and invite him or her up on stage.

While the speaker is coming up on stage, all the leaders in the front row must stand up, applause and welcome the main speaker on stage. This will create a lot of credibility for the speaker and the audience will really want to hear what he or she has to say later on.

Also, some rock and roll music while the speaker comes up on stage will really wake the audience up.

2. Engage the audience in 2 way communication

While you are presenting to the audience the 8 key points I mentioned above, make sure you engage the audience in 2 way communication.

It’s really simple to do this.

Whenever you finish talking about a key point, just ask the audience, “So if this company can help you achieve your dreams, will you be keen to find out how? Say Yes”

Magically, you will hear the audience follow your instructions and say YES… (I always get a kick out of getting the audience to follow my instructions.)

If you have a tough audience who gives you the blind stare… just say “I can’t hear you… (then do the famous hulk hogan hand to the ear move and ask again), I can’t hear you people… Say YES.” (this will definitely work and most of the time the audience will gladly participate. This will work very well if your leaders take the lead to respond, as they will motivate the rest of the audience to follow)

After you are done with the next key point, do it again. Ask them “So if these products can help you achieve what you want, will be you be interested to find out if it’s true? say Yes.”

And they will say “YES” again just as if you had hypnotised them.

And after 8 “YES’s”, guess what?

“So I’m sure everyone here in this room wants to achieve their dreams with our team, am I right? Say YES.”

Take a good look around the floor and remember those people who reply with a loud YES!

Those are your future downlines!

As MLM guru Art Jonak (creator of MLMPlayers.com) said,

“Build it once, Build it BIG, Build it to provide a lifetime of income!”