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Visual Aids

An age-old question for presenters is, “Should I use visual aids?”.

While I agree that people can become overly reliant on visual aids, resulting in a boring presentation, I believe that good presenters use every tool at their disposal to foster understanding with their audiences. Visual aids do just that: they aid understanding.They don’t say, “A picture is worth a thousand words” for nothing.

Despite the wisdom that supports the use of visual aids, I see many salespeople who refuse to use them. What reasons can there be for this?

  1. Ego – perhaps these salespeople feel that they are such wordsmiths they don’t need to use visual aids. They may be right, IF they have a present-to-list ratio exceeding 75%, but even then, could visual aids have helped them get one from the 25% of listings they lost? With today’s selling fees, that’s a lot of money lost because of pride.
  2. They worry about delivering a ‘canned’ presentation –this is an excuse really. Great presenters can deliver the phone book and make it interesting. Poor presenters can take the most compelling presentation and make it boring. If you worry about delivering a canned presentation, practice is the way to make your presentations fluent and natural. Blaming visual aids for a canned delivery is like blaming the car because you don’t know how to drive.
  3. They have never taken the time to structure their story –they ‘wing it’. This is the arena of the mediocre performer, the sales hack. If you think about the story you want to tell at your listing presentations, you can structure it so that it ‘builds’ towards the signature. Visual aids can be used to break up the presentation, to help you make important points with clients. Never ‘wing it’. Never!

Many offices are complaining that they are low on stock. If you are in this position, it is even more critical that you make every listing presentation count. I recommend that you rethink your listing presentation – work at improving it.

How can you deliver a more convincing presentation, one where sellers feel compelled to list with you? I guarantee that your presentations can be enhanced by including visual aids.

This is especially important when listing absentee owners. Some salespeople are so stupid that they will try and list sellers over the phone! If the distance is too far for a face-to-face visit, the next best thing is to present over Skype and screen-share your visual aids.

Should YOU use visual aids? Yes! Whether face-to-face, or listing absentee owners with Skype, you will improve your present-to-list ratio if you use them.

Gary Pittard
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