How to present to clients

Sarah Austin

Making a presentation can be a daunting prospect, whatever the subject matter – you might be in complete control of what you want to say and how you deliver it, but how the client reacts is another matter entirely!

The main point to consider is that a presentation is all about communication and delivering information that your client does not have. You’re the expert remember, that’s why you’ve been hired! Think of your presentation as giving your client a “present” – literally, your expertise. This thought alone should fill you with confidence and give you the power to take ownership of the meeting and communicate effectively.

So here are our top 10 tips to not only get through a client presentation but shine!

  1. Simplify, simplify, simplify – Never try and impress your client with jargon they don’t understand. It will simply overwhelm them and prevent you from building that all important rapport and relationship.
  2. Speak their language not yours – does what you’re speaking about resonate with them and their goals? Can they relate to it in their business life?
  3. Focus on what matters to them – show your client that you can operate to and share their same values, making you the best partner to work with them.
  4. Make your point clearly, concisely and quickly – no one wants to go round the houses getting from A to B!
  5. Confirm they understand, and remember to ask questions – give your client time to digest what you’ve said, check that they’ve understood and give them the chance to ask a question.
  6. Be respectful – remember you’re the subject expert and it may take your client a little more time to catch up with your way of thinking. We’ve all been there!
  7. Avoid shaming their questions (they don’t know what you know!) – the old adage is true – there’s no such thing as a stupid question. Be grateful that they are engaged enough to ask a question, however basic it may seem to you as as expert. Remember, it’s all about communication and stimulating conversation.
  8. Excite them – go into the presentation brimming with enthusiasm. You’re about to take the client on a journey to show them exactly how they can achieve their goals.
  9. Set a vision for them and help them see how to get there – this is where you need outline the end result and what that means to their business. They need to be able to conceptualise this.
  10. Explain the process and let them know where they are – Set very clear milestones, objectives and responsibilities for each step of the process. It’s important that everyone’s expectations are met and you can leave the meeting safe in the knowledge that all parties are in agreement and on the same page.

If you can work your way through these 10 steps, you will have demonstrated to your client that you really are the right partner for their business. Good luck!