Delivering powerful presentations is an essential task for any advisor. But factors such as nerves, poor preparation and attendee indifference can all get in the way, so before you face the audience, try implementing these helpful hints as you plan for your presentation.

Preparing for the presentation

  • Rehearse before giving your presentation, says Brad Williams, president of Brad Williams Financial Services, Huntsville, Ala. He says, “When a speaker knows his material and can speak with conviction and enthusiasm, then people will build confidence and trust. That’s when they’ll come to see you.”
  • Try testing your knowledge after you have rehearsed, suggests Mark Pruitt, founder and CEO of Strategic Estate Planning Services, Dallas. Take away your slides to see if you can speak without a script. If you are not at the point where you can completely talk unprompted, make a flip chart in case the projector or computer malfunctions during the presentation.
  • Keep time limits in mind. Steven Johnson, chief investment officer of Ashton Royce & Company, Williamsburg, Va., says “A lot of presentations want to go an hour and a half or two hours, and then they need an intermission. I think it’s best to keep it specific, shorter and sweeter. I want to be done in 45 minutes at the most.”Also, he says to limit the number of slides you prepare. Ten to 20 slides should be enough to highlight a few key items.

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Amanda McGrory is the online editor for Senior Market Advisor, Benefits Selling and Life Insurance Selling magazines.