If you’re in Sales, you know how difficult it can be to put together a relevant and impactful sale presentation or sales event. That’s where Inkwazi Kommunications comes in. With years of experience in Sales Enablement & Event Management, they are in the business of helping companies put forth their sales ideas with clarity and purpose. We were lucky enough to speak with founder Catherine Schalk about her booming business, and how she uses Slideshop’s products with her business.

Tell us about what Inkwazi Kommunications does.

We do a variety of Sales Enablement work which includes running corporate events, to developing learning materials, being emcee’s, to presentation design and storyboard consultation. We excel at creating both customer-facing materials, internal and board meeting presentations.

Because Sales Enablement is a niche function, Inkwazi is in a niche space in the industry. Not a lot of people do what I do in the way that I do it, and this along with the wide operational range of my business is what sets me apart from many other companies. And I love to work with clients where the need and hunger is at its greatest because that’s where we can have the greatest impact.

What is the biggest mistake you see business make in their sales presentations?

The biggest mistake I see is that both internal and external sale presentations focus too much about themselves and not enough about what the audience cares about, be it a customer or an internal company executive.

At the end of the day, what matters in customer presentations is “what’s in it for the customer?” Customers don’t care how awesome your company is or how clever you are or that you crushed your quota. They want to know: Do you understand my business? Do you understand my problems? Can you help me add value to by business? Can you bring me critical insights that make me smarter?

Many sales people are not tailoring the message for their audience. Your presentation should be relevant to their industry, their company, the department or function you’re presenting to and ultimately to the decision makers and problem owners you’re targeting. It has to be that focused. Show you understand their business and that you can solve their problems for them. That is what gets their attention.

And again for internal sales presentations, they’re often not presented in a way that the audience can understand. They’re not tailored enough.

For example, when you present to the board, they care less about the look of your presentation and more about the content. If you spend too much time making it look really slick, they’ll be worried you’re spending your time on the wrong thing. Save the intense graphical work for the other staff-level presentations.

What does the ideal executive presentation look like to you?

The key principle is simplicity and clarity. And there is a best practice way to structure the executive presentation storyboard. It goes as follows:

  1. Executive Summary.  This must include the purpose of the presentation i.e. Obtain a decision, approval, or is it just awareness, etc.
  2. Current Situation.  This should outline the problems or the opportunity
  3. Recommended Solution or Approach.  This should outline how the problem can be solved or how the company can tap into the opportunity
  4. Benefits and Risks of recommended solution or approach
  5. The Evidence.  This is very important for executives. They want to know if the recommendation has worked before AND what was the outcome (value)
  6. Next Steps.  This should outline what the key next steps are including obtaining the decision or approval required from the executive that was outlined during the executive summary

Everything else goes into the appendix! In total, you only want about 6 or 7 slides.

How do you use Slideshop?

I found Slideshop just by searching for PowerPoint templates on Google. Other websites looked old and their templates were out-of-date. In my view, most of the time, companies don’t need the super high-end presentation designs they think they do. Few occasions call for such high-end design. People want their presentations to look professional, modern, clean, and of course they want them to look fantastic which is where Slideshop comes in. Slideshop provides the perfect range and level of slide design that is professional, smart, cool-looking, affordable, and not overly designed.

I almost never use an entire Slideshop template. I take pieces of them like a graph, or an icon, or a whole slide, or other elements. Slideshop saves me a ton of time this way, as I can grab individual elements to use in my presentations as I need them instead of building them out myself. This can cut my creative time investment by as much as 30 to 40%. If I find a slide I like, it saves me the hours I would have spent creating it from scratch.

I’ve built a massive library of slide templates from Slideshop. And I often just browse what I have when I’m looking for inspiration. Slideshop has a tremendous impact on my ability to build my reputation as someone that delivers excellent work which helps me grow my business.

Thanks Catherine! For more information on the Sales Enablement and Event Management that Inkwazi Kommunications offers,