Welcome to our website!

presentation training Art of persuasion p16

Telling is not selling. It is important to realize that there is a great difference between telling someone how good something or some idea may be, and selling it to them.

As a general rule you should allow an hour for persuasive presentations as they can be highly interactive.


People buy anything – including “ideas” – for one of the following reasons:

S - Security, Safety
P – Performance, Productivity
A – Appearance, Attractiveness, Image
C – Convenience, Comfort
E – Economy, Saving money
D – Durability, how you can match their needs

They buy because the idea/service/product satisfies a need and provides a benefit to them.

They do not buy anything because of its features, but because of its benefits.

Therefore, when selling your services (or ideas) you must stress the benefits more than the features.


Definition: A FEATURE describes something.

A BENEFIT is what the feature will do for someone.

Remember: Features fail.

Benefits are best.

Telling the difference: To find the benefit of a feature, ask yourself “so what?” or
“which means that?” The answer is a benefit.

The Persuasion Stepping Stones

1. Qualify
To avoid wasting time or repetition, ensure you are talking to the right people. Ask yourself “Who are they?”, ‘What departments are they from?’, ‘Will they know who I am and what I do?’ Tell them you realize they already know a certain amount about the subject, this helps to establish rapport. Make a mental note to explain any technical terms some of your audience may not understand.

2. Clarify The Needs
Think of these in terms of SPACED.

At least one-quarter of your presentation needs to be devoted to clarifying the need. To stand any chance of persuading someone about a matter, it is vital first to get agreement on the problems or disadvantages of the present situation. More proposals flounder because the speaker does not emphasise these problems than for any other reason. Before moving on to the next stepping stone, ask your audience to agree that these problems exist.

3. Match The Need
By now your audience will be keen to know you intend solving their problems. You will have built up a desire. Tell them what your solutions are. Explain them in the same order as the corresponding problems. Your solutions should be features or descriptions, rather than benefits, which come next.

4. State Benefits
Think of these in terms of SPACED.

Now explain what your solutions will mean – how your audience or your company will benefit. Try to make each of your benefits answer the problems stated at step 2. It is often a good time to mention costs at this point – not only expenditure but savings, although you should have already anticipated objections to cost increases in your preparation.

5. Action
You are now ready to recommend what should happen and by when. After all, this is the purpose of your presentation. Be as positive as you can, and try to ensure you stay in control.

The Persuasion Stepping Stones – Summary

To persuade successfully, it is vital to follow certain steps:
1. Qualify yourself in your audience’s eyes
2. Clarify their needs
3. Match their needs
4. Emphasise benefits
5. Action


1. Qualify
• Introduce yourself
• Give them due recognition
• Outline what you intend to cover

Middle/Main Body
2. Clarify Need (think SPACED)
• Brief outline of all problems, needs or the situation
• Detail of each problem and signpost to next problem
• Summarise and get agreement that they exist

3. Match Need
• Outline your solutions
• Detail each solution
• Provide signposts and summaries
• Get agreement that solutions sound plausible

4. State Benefits (think SPACED)
• Outline benefits
• Say what they will mean/what they will do for people
• Summarise and get agreement that they are worth achieving

1. Summarise
• The original problems/needs
• Your solutions, their features
• The benefits

2. Action
• What you propose? Who should do what? By when?
• Get final agreement

Next Page 17