Gartner Research

First-Meeting Mistakes 11-20 and How Tech CEOs Can Enable Sales Executives to Deliver First-Meeting Content Effectively

Published: 04 September 2018

ID: G00365872

Analyst(s): Rob Addy, Dane Anderson


This research covers 10 common introductory sales presentation mistakes that tech CEOs seeking to increase win rates and reduce sales cycle times must avoid to be successful. Presentation content design won’t win deals on its own, but it certainly makes it harder to close business if it is ignored.

Table Of Contents


  • Common Introductory Sales Presentation Mistakes 11-20 and How to Avoid Them
    • 11. Big-Ticket Numbers or Banner Headline Statements Without Substantive Proof; Failing to Drill Down Beneath the 60,000-Foot Rhetoric
    • 12. Disastrous Demonstrations
    • 13. Using Challenger Questioning in an, as Yet, Unfamiliar Environment
    • 14. Using the Product as an Emotional Crutch; Screenshots Do Not Make a Valuable Story
    • 15. Poor Delivery; Failure to Rehearse; Too Many Presenters; Clunky and Disjointed Handovers Between Presenters
    • 16. Failing to Demonstrate You’ve Taken Time to Think About and Understand What Your Audience Is Thinking and/or Cares About; Too Much Obvious Boilerplate Content — Lack of Personalizaton
    • 17. Failure to Demonstrate Commercial Credibility; Not Mapping Out the “Route to the Purchase Order”
    • 18. Taking Too Long to Get to the Point; Too Much Generic Market Commentary
    • 19. Lack of a Clear and Logical Flow; No Obvious Progression of Ideas and/or Themes
    • 20. Overreliance on the Talk Track; Slides That Are Incapable of Standing Alone
  • Why This Research Matters
  • Putting This Guidance Into Practice

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