Get More Business With Attention-Getting Presentation Folders

What do meetings, conferences, sales presentations and trade shows all have in common? Presentation folders are an opportunity to spread the word about your business. In order to spread the word at these events, you need to attract attention to get noticed.

So, how do you go about grabbing people’s attention? Before you think about hiring someone to streak with the name of your business painted on their back, there is a cheaper, simpler way that’s more effective and won’t result in any legal trouble. One of the best ways to attract attention is with a presentation folder. A custom printed presentation folder creates a powerful first impression. Once you grab attention with your folder, you will be able to pique interest with the information that you have included. A well designed presentation folder establishes you as a credible, professional in your field. It levels the playing field for small and medium sized businesses.

A simple design using your logo and business name is all you need on the front. Keep it clean with open space so you don’t distract attention away from your logo and name. This is an excellent way to establish a brand if you don’t already have one. If it is simple you may wonder how you can make it stand out. Make your design stand out by using a WOW FACTOR effect to ensure that your presentation folder will capture the receiver’s eye. WOW FACTOR effects are special coating and inks you can choose to give an eye candy effect. Some options are using a matte/dull or spot UV coating. A matte/dull coating gives your presentation folder a very elegant look, while a spot UV coating can highlight specific areas with a high gloss laminate. If you want to use inks to make that stand out effect, you can use silver metallic ink (PMS 877) or colored metallics effects. These inks make your presentation folders very impressive. These effects are can be done to all 14 Pt. coated card stock. I recommend any one of 6 papers for your printing. Heavy 14 pt. gloss coated and 14 pt. uncoated card stock have a durable and heavy feel when it’s picked it up. Using 100 Lb gloss cover will give you a lighter weight folder while using a 16 Pt. silk laminated card stock will give you a unique, stylish satin finish. Another option is using Eco-friendly 30% recycled 100 Lb. uncoated linen or Extreme Green sustainable 100% recycled 95 Lb. Reincarnation matte coated cover stock allowing you to show your commitment to the environment. Any one of these attention-getting effects and papers will open your presentation or meetings with a brilliant beginning.

The way that you organize the information you include in your presentation folder is also important. The contents of the folder should work with the design of the cover for a cohesive look. In order to make your material interesting, you need to know your audience ahead of time. Since you will most likely include more than one piece of material, you will want to ensure that they are organized in a manner that flows. You might want to stagger cut the sheets in the folder so you can see the titles of the sheets from front to back It’s also a very good idea to include business card and or cd slits on the pockets. Printing on the flaps may be good idea, and it shouldn’t cost any more.

If you make presentations, custom printed folders are a marketing tool which will help you succeed. Remember these items will leave a lasting impression. Grab their attention immediately by using Wow factor effects. You will be glad you did.

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7 PowerPoint Presentation Bloopers

Microsoft PowerPoint is the software of choice for many when it comes to making a presentation before students, employees, project team members and the like. As with other similar presentation packages, it offers many useful features and functions. The downside is that in all too many presentations, the technology takes centre stage, shunting the presenter to the role of supporting act. We have all witnessed presentations that seemed designed to help us catch up on our sleep and others that were a whirlwind, “full of sound and fury, signifying nothing”.

Over the years of witnessing hundreds of presentations, I have seen my fair share of yawn promoters and storms in teacups. As a professional trainer, I thought: Why not condense the most common errors that I have seen and draw some useful lessons from which we can all benefit? Here are my top seven PowerPoint annoyances and what we can learn from each of these to improve our own performance.

1. Not telling the participants the purpose of the session
You know the kind of presentation I am talking about. From one slide to the next, you have little to no idea of where the presentation is going. You wonder whether you should even have turned up. Eliminate the guessing game by letting your audience know up front the purpose of your session and how you plan to achieve it.

2. Overdosing participants with information
Novice presenters often suffer the illusion that some content is good, so more is better. With this mindset, these presenters cram as much as possible onto each slide, filling it with font sizes as small as 10 point. Help your participants avoid eye strain and to stay interested by using plenty of white space and font sizes large enough to read from the back row. Add to your slides tables, charts and other graphics that will aid understanding your message.

3. Avoiding personal interaction with the audience
Some presenters display discomfort in revealing their personalities. They hide with their backs turned toward the audience, reading each word on each slide, and avoid eye contact by burying themselves in their notes. Hearing the presenter’s words and reading them at the same time not only slows down learning, it robs the presentation of the presenter’s personality. Participants are yearning to engage with the speaker and not be simply read to. So, take time to turn off your slide show and put down your notes to make a connection with your audience. Use plenty of eye contact and generate interest with your voice and body language.

4. Showing as many slides as possible
In an effort to get through volumes of material, inexperienced presenters try to break records for showing the most number of slides in the shortest possible time. As time starts to run out, the pace of the presentation increases until each slide seems to be but a blur. To avoid giving your participants a headache, allow about five minutes per slide. If time gets short, eliminate the least important slides.

5. Distributing copies of the slides before the session
You may think it a bonus if the presenter hands you a copy of their presentation before it starts. In fact, listening to the presentation whilst trying to follow the sequence in your handout only impedes your understanding. Avoid handing out copies of the slides until after the presentation. Giving participants pen and paper before the session starts will be of more use to them as they write notes in their own words.

6. Neglecting giving out support materials
Effective slides contain the key messages only, with the presenter filling in the detail. Presenters that only handout a copy of the slides may leave many participants bewildered some days or weeks later as they try to remember what each bulleted point meant. At the appropriate time during the presentation, hand out supporting materials that will allow participants to use the information you presented after they leave. You could distribute bibliographies, instructions or diagrams, for example.

7. Using a mishmash of slide transition effects
The technology so enamors some presenters that they feel you will be a better person through experiencing every “wow” effect in the package. You find yourself reaching for the motion sickness tablets after you’ve seen the slides crash, slide, twirl, dissolve… Help your participants stay focused on the message by using just one or two slide transition effects. Remember, your audience came to see and hear you and not a special effects show.

How many bloopers did you recognize? How many have you committed? Now choose the one or two worst bloopers that you have done and commit to eradicating those in your next presentation. Once you are satisfied that you have those licked, select the next one or two practices to improve upon. Ask your participants how you are doing. In time, by focusing on your key areas for improvement, you will be regarded as a PowerPoint master.

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Beyond Bullets, Making Presentations POP

Beyond Just Bullets

I have seen many presentations where the presenter just reads the slides. What advice would you give for going beyond just the bullet points?

When you are first starting out as a writer and are doing presentations, the temptation is to use the PowerPoint presentation as a crutch. You put the information on the slide and then as a matter of comfort, you read them to make sure you do not miss anything. Unfortunately, doing this will let everyone know that you are an unseasoned presenter.

Thank goodness there are simple tricks to get beyond just reading the slide deck. Try these ideas as a starting point.

  1. Use the 5 by 7 rule. No more than five bullets on a slide with a maximum of seven words each. I know this one is not always that easy to follow and at Author’s Success Guild we push the boundaries by using animations and images.
  2. Use images with captions instead of bullet points. You can illustrate your ideas with the right graphic and a good caption and often this will have a longer lasting impression on your audience.
  3. Use short videos embedded into your presentation. Create a “trailer” like those done for movies, that emphasizes your point and then discuss what people saw through a series of questions. You certainly cannot read a video on the screen but you do have to be quiet while it plays.
  4. Make your presentation interactive by posing a question and filling in the blanks right on the presentation as you are giving it. This is a little more advanced and we tell you how to do this in other lessons. It is actually very easy to do but it does take a little practice to execute during a live presentation.
  5. Involve the audience through polls and surveys inside your presentation and then, depending on the results, alter your presentation automatically. If you have five questions and each question leads into a different presentation, be prepared to change your presentation on the fly to accommodate audience needs. Yes, you will need to have five branches to your presentation. They can be prepared as one presentation using appropriate linking strategies.

Now for the hard part. Preparing your slide deck is simple as long as you know what you want to say. The more difficult aspect is practice! Yes, practice and rehearsal will make the difference between a great presentation and simply reading the slides.

The best ways to practice entail the following:

  1. Sit in front of your computer with the webcam turned on.
  2. Put your presentation and your presentation notes on the screen or as an alternative, print out what you want to say.
  3. Use a free service such as to allow for recording.
  4. Run through your presentation while recording in front of your webcam.
  5. Play back your recording. Remember the first run through will be the one where you are constantly looking at your notes.
  6. Continue the recording and playback process at least ten times until you are spending most of the time looking at the camera and only glancing at the slide deck on occasion to keep your place. When you are happy with what you see, then you are almost ready for the live event.
  7. Find a few people to rehearse with each day. Look at your presentation as your part in a Broadway show! The actors do not go on stage and read their scripts, and neither should you.
  8. Get out there and do the presentation!

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Debt Negotiation Pros Vs Your Creditors – Who Has the Advantage in Debt Negotiation?

These days, the term “Negotiation” is not new. A lot of buzz is already running around the market with different meanings. However, the focus revolves around the theme of reducing the price and convincing the opposite person for a good deal. The same theme applies for debt negotiations and when we talk in professional terms, it deals with lot of money.

There has been a long running war as debt negotiation pros vs creditors and different people have their own opinions. According to statistical reports, debt negotiation professionals always had a pitched battle with the creditors and the many people have benefited from this war. If you are smart enough and realize the potential in this conflict, you can easily take advantage and get your debts eliminated.

The common man acts as the client to both the creditors and the professional negotiators. Now, when the consumer is in trouble with huge debts, the negotiations come forward for the rescue. These professionals are aware of the loopholes of the financial system and know very well how to tackle the creditors. They are capable of twisting the rules and use them to their advantage.

Being a client, you can get the best advantage of these rules and get a lot of relief from debt. The main reason of conflict between debt negotiation pros vs creditors is due to the amount and the floating market conditions. When the financial system is stable, the creditors force clients to take different offers with low interest rates. Now when the conditions are not favorable, they resort to forcible collection of money. The customers face a tight situation and fail to repay the money on time and this is where the professionals come to picture. They help the consumers and deal on their behalf with the creditors to bring down the amount.

Ideally, we all can go ahead and negotiate with the creditors. But, remember that the bankers are here to make money. They will not let you go easily unless they make profit. So, the professional bodies are recommended as the best approach and you should never step back in the fight between debt negotiation pros vs creditors.

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Commercial Real Estate Acquisition Skills – Negotiating With the Seller

People make commercial real estate negotiating a lot more difficult than it needs to be.

First, you need to collect information.

There are certain questions you will want to ask the seller early on, depending on the particulars of the property, such as:

Why do you want to sell? The owner’s reason for selling can give you a clue as to his or her needs or basic interests. Understanding the seller’s motives can be a powerful negotiating tool.

Has the property been recently appraised? A recent appraisal can be helpful in determining the After Repair Value (ARV) of the property.

How long has the property been on the market? Knowing how long the property has been on the market could be an indication as to how willing the seller might be to lower the asking price.

Is there existing financing? If so, what is the payoff? If there is a mortgage or other lien on the property, the balance required to pay it off will tell you the lowest price the seller can afford to accept.

Have there been any structural repairs or additions? If so, was a permit obtained for the work? Building permits should have been obtained for any structural additions or repairs. Otherwise complications could ensue.

What other information can you give me about the property that might be useful?
Any other information you can obtain on your subject property is worth noting. You may discover some seemingly minor detail that turns out to be critical to your investment decision and to the negotiation process.

Ten Basic Principles of Negotiation

The following are some timeless negotiating principles that, if practiced regularly, will increase your ability to acquire real estate at terms favorable to you, while keeping your seller feeling that he or she has benefited from the transaction as well:

1. Everything is negotiable.

Question everything and don’t necessarily accept what you’re told at face value. To be a good negotiator, you must be willing to think for yourself and challenge everything. It’s important to look out for your own interests while at the same time respecting the interests of the seller.

2. Learn to listen and allow the seller to do most of the talking.

Ask open-ended questions that can’t be answered with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’, then sit back and listen. If you do this, the seller will tell you everything you need to know.

3. Gather as much information as you can before the negotiations.

Try to find out what your seller’s situation is and what his needs are. The more you know, the better you’ll be able to satisfy yours and your seller’s needs.

4. Be optimistic.

If you expect more, you’ll get more. Make your first offer lower than you expect the seller to accept. If your first offer is for less than what you can afford to pay, you have left yourself room to negotiate upward if necessary.

5. Do not be in a hurry.

Be willing to wait if necessary. As the seller runs out of time, the pressure to negotiate becomes greater.

6. Try to fulfill the seller’s basic interests.

It’s important to understand that the seller’s basic interests are not necessarily the same as his or her position. If you can determine what the seller really needs and satisfy those needs, he or she is likely to have flexibility on other things, such as price and terms.

7. Let the seller make the first offer.

They may ask for less than you thought. Don’t risk paying more than you have to because you made the first offer and it was more than the seller would have been willing to accept.

8. Don’t accept the seller’s first offer so he doesn’t think he could have gotten more.

If you negotiate for a better offer, when you finally agree on a price, the seller will feel that he has gotten a better deal.

9. Do not give anything away without asking for something in return.

Think tit for tat. If you do, the seller will be tempted to ask for more.

10. Always be willing to say ‘no’ and walk away.

If you are always willing to walk away from the table, you become a more powerful negotiator. However, there’s a common myth to playing hardball. Even if you do walk away from the negotiating table, it’s best to leave on good terms. Don’t burn your bridges.

Keep in mind that if your seller feels that he or she has been dealt with fairly, and is happy with the way the negotiations turned out, they may turn out to be an important source for more leads!

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Negotiating Via E-mail?

Here’s what the research has turned up. E-mail negotiations:

* appear to take longer than face-to-face negotiations.
* provide less satisfaction than face-to-face negotiations.
* are perceived as less fair than face-to-face negotiations.
* are more impersonal, allowing less rapport to be established.
* are less diplomatic and often use blunt, misconstrued messages.
* lead to more deadlocks, misinterpretations, and mistrust.

It would be wise to adopt a few key negotiating techniques to help overcome some of these potential negotiation problems. The lack of a strong personal relationship with the other party is the big one. This can lead to hostility and a greater risk of deadlock.

Face-to-face negotiations provide an opportunity to ask many clarifying questions, build rapport, observe non-verbal indicators (i.e. body language) and tone of voice indicators. E-mail is good for transmitting factual information, but it’s not the best medium for observing or expressing feelings, attitude, emotions or tone. It is harder to get a feel for how strong the other person’s position is or how much pressure they’re under.

Best e-mail Negotiating Practices

1. Use a ‘blended’ negotiation. Start the negotiation with a personal telephone call. Talk informally and use this as an opportunity to plan your negotiation. As the negotiation proceeds, supplement your e-mails with an occasional ‘real time’ telephone call or actual face-to-face meeting.

2. In your e-mails share personal information about yourself and invest some time developing a personal relationship with the other party. Use ‘non-task’ chatting about personal items. Maybe e-mail pictures to each other so you can see what the other person looks like.

3. Establish some common areas of interest – same professional association, same college, lived in the same state or city, etc. Discover what you have in common. The more areas of common interest the better. This helps develop trust, encourages honesty and builds rapport.

4. Try using some ‘emoticons’ (symbols to express emotion). ;-) for wink, :-) for smile, :-I for indifference, or :-( for unhappy. !! can express anger, excitement, happiness as well as urgency – be careful.

5. Frequently summarize, list any concessions you have made and provide assurances: “What we have achieved so far….” “Susan, we’ve made great progress. . .”

6. Include positive signals and refer to the relationship: “Bob, thanks for your flexibility on this issue . . .”

7. E-mails provide a wonderful way to create a record of your negotiation. Build folders for your e-mail correspondence – remember the power of record keeping.

8. Be careful when replying and forwarding e-mails. Understand the power of copying to other people (i.e. other departments, management, team members). How much information are you forwarding (e.g. just your last e-mail, or the last seven e-mails and all associated replies and attachments)? Is this what you want to do?

9. One final test – do you want to press the send button? Is this what you want to say (i.e. proof read, is the tone right)? Ask yourself, can I wait until tomorrow to send this (i.e. it might be wise to think about it overnight)? Don’t shoot off a quick reply when you are angry. Most of us live to regret it.

E-mail negotiations are not inherently good or bad – just different than face-to-face negotiations. Since almost all of us use e-mail, we need to be careful not to let this medium impede the negotiating process.

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The Power Of Favors During A Negotiation

In a negotiation we want the other side of the table to make concessions to us so that we can get what we need out of the negotiations. However, in all honesty, no matter what negotiation styles or negotiating techniques we use, they probably are really not all that motivated to give us the concessions that we want. What this means for us is that we’re going to have to find a way to get them to want to give us what we both want and need. Hmm, how can we make this happen?

One Good Turn Deserves Another

When we want the other side of the table to make a concession to us, there are a lot of different ways to go about making this happen. One that comes to mind right away is to force them to give in to us. In some cases we might be able to do this; however, the rest of the negotiation just got a lot harder because now they are going to be resenting us.

A much better way to get what we want out of a negotiation is to make the other side want to make a concession to us. One of the best ways to go about making this happen is to use the “one good turn deserves another” technique. Note that this is very different from the concept of a “freebie” – in this case you are not giving something away. Rather, you are doing something for the other side and you expect them to then do something for you.

The key to making this technique work for you is that you need to know what issues that are being negotiated are important to you and which ones are not. You are going to want to give in to the other side on a number of the unimportant issues and then ask them to give in to you on one of the important issues.

How To Be A Good Negotiator

You’ll never be able to get your way on every issue in a negotiation. A good negotiator knows that he or she is going to have to exchange some minor losses for some major wins.

Using this technique where you give in on minor issues to get them to give in on major issues is how you get the other side to be willing to make the concessions that you want them to make. What a good negotiator realizes is that not all issues are equal – the exchange of concessions does not have to include items of equal value.

An example of this would be if you gave in on five different items and then asked the other side to give in on one. Those five items may have had very little value to you, but the one that you want them to give in to you on might be a very big deal to you. Make sure that you keep the value that you place on the different items that are being negotiated hidden from the other side.

What All Of This Means For You

Getting the other side of the table to give us what we want is what negotiations are all about. It’s how to make this happen that is the hard thing to do.

The key to getting the concessions from the other side that you want is to make concessions to them. Give in on the little issues that you really don’t care about, let these mount up and then ask them to give in on something that you really do care about. Don’t be afraid to make concessions to the other side. This is all part of the process and you’ll need to give in order to get.

Skilled negotiators realize that a principled negotiation is all about both giving and getting. Taking the time to give into the other side will allow you to get them to give in to you one the issues that, in the end, really matter to you. Learn how to do this and you’ll be the negotiator who always gets what you want from a negotiation.

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Rare Known Mind Control Secrets To Win Negotiations

What mind control secrets do you use to win negotiations? Better yet, do you consider how to control your mind and that of the opposing negotiator to win negotiations?

To increase the win rate of your negotiations, you must understand how to use mind control. Observe the following rare known mind control secrets to win more of your negotiations.

  • Control – The following is a recorded message heard by callers on the outgoing voicemail of a company that was having a severe problem… “We are aware of the issue that you’re experiencing and our team is currently addressing it. We hope to have it resolved shortly. Thank you for your patience.”

After the message, the caller was disconnected. What happened in that call? The company was telling subscribers that it was aware of its problem, the problem was being addressed, and they thanked the caller for their patience. Wait! The caller had no say per their ‘patience’ because they couldn’t respond to the message.

The above is one aspect of mind control. If you give no options and instead cite your negotiation position without the opportunity for the opposing negotiator to respond, there can be no arguing or rebuttals. This tactic works best when you’re the one in a strong negotiation position and your offer is made in a form where the opposing negotiator cannot reach you quickly, if at all, to respond.

  • Awareness - Do you observe the number of times you and the opposing negotiator experience attempts to exercise mind control in your negotiations? You should, because it means you’re raising your awareness per what’s occurring in the negotiation and why such occurrences happen. That’s very important when it comes to controlling a negotiation because before you attempt to control a situation, you must be aware of why you’re attempting to do so based on what has preceded your attempts.

In every negotiation, each negotiator attempts to control the thought process and thus the mind of the other negotiator. That’s how one negotiator comes out ahead in a negotiation. To the degree your awareness is raised to the level of understanding what’s occurring and why what’s occurring at the time it does, you’ll have greater insight per the tactics the opposing negotiator is employing to sway your perspective in the negotiation. That awareness will give you insight into what she’s attempting to achieve. From that insight, you can assess how to respond.

  • Subliminal Suggestions – You can make and place subliminal thoughts in the mind of the other negotiator by placing emphasis on certain words (e.g. I believe this one will serve you best, agreed? Assigning number one and two to two options you offer and circling the number one, etc.). In each case, you’re subliminally leading the opposing negotiator to be predisposed to accepting option one.

To give this type of mind control tactic prevalence, you have to set it up by exposing the opposing negotiator, in this example, to the number one multiple times prior to associating the option you wish her to accept with that position. If done astutely, she’ll be unaware as to why she favors option one from the two offered.

You can discover a lot by being mindful of the mind controlling aspects that occur in a negotiation. To the degree that you are and know how to utilize the tactics mentioned above, you’ll become a more convincing negotiator that wins more of your negotiations… and everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

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