Making sales meeting presentations - Sales Management

The sales manager frequently has to make presentations to groups, including customers, colleagues or his area sales team. The key to successful presentations is preparation.

Preparation starts with considering the audience, the purpose and the subject matter.

The audience

In preparing for a sales meeting or presentation take account of:

  • the present level of subject knowledge of the audience
  • their experience in relation to the subject matter
  • their likely interest level
  • the attitudes of the audience
  • their ability to assimilate the information being presented
  • their familiarity and experience with participating in meetings or public presentations.

The sales team will normally have an interesting a level of detail about products and salesperson that other groups, such as customers,may not.

The purpose

You, the sales manager, need to be clear on your objectives for the sales meeting or presentation.

The format of the meeting should reflect its purpose, as should the preparation of notes and supporting materials. Typical purposes of meetings include:

  • to give a background impression or overview of events, developments,programmers, etc.
  • to increase expertise or present detailed information
  • to teach a new skill or modify participant
  • to present a new point of view
  • to present a programmer or course olfaction.


A meeting that is designed to present detailed information (e.g. on product ranges,prices, targets, etc.) needs to have more comprehensive charts and supporting handouts than a meeting just giving background information(e.g. outlining label changes for next year). A meeting designed to modify selling (e.g. closing the sale, handling objections, addressing benefits of relocating shelf displays, etc.) needs to have role play scenarios prepared for active role playing in the meeting.

The subject matter

Once you are clear on the meeting’s audience and purpose you need to prepare your notes for your own inputs, structure an agenda,and draft notes on points you want to ensure receive coverage in the meeting. Attention to detail at this stage will reduce the risk of meeting degenerating into a moaning or gossip session. Your sales team should leave each of your meetings feeling it was worthwhile and beneficial. Look at the subject matter to be covered and your agenda, and:

  • jot down all your initial ideas on each topic on a sheet of paper
  • group related points on each topic together
  • identify the key points the talk can be structured around
  • identify and research any additional sources of useful information that will help you cover the subject thoroughly:
  • your personal experience;
  • experience of colleagues or members of the sales team;
  • company literature or any other relevant published literature
  • prepare any meeting presentation aids,e.g. charts, handouts, videos, etc., taking account of the ability of the team to absorb information (avoid using complex data unnecessarily)
  • look for ways to involve the audience in participatory fashion at this preparation stage, and plan how and when to draw them into active participation.


Structuring the presentation

Generally, if you are preparing a formal presentation on a topic, you should divide the presentation into:

  • an introduction, presenting an overview of the topic and highlighting how team members can benefit
  • the core theme of the subject matter,encouraging participation, discussion and questions
  • a memorable summary, highlighting priorities and key action points.

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