What Should Stand-up Comedians and Presales Have in Common? - Great Demo

What Should Stand-up Comedians and Presales Have in Common?

What can presales (and other customer-facing folks) learn from stand-up comedians about demos and presentations? They test, discard, keep, refine, and harden new and existing content through iterative experimentation!

They test new material and, if it works, continue to refine and include it in their “act” going forward. And, of course, new content that fails is scrapped, as is old content that no longer resonates. You can apply these same methods in your demos.

Stand-up comedians work constantly to improve their material. They introduce new ideas, assess audience reaction, and add, modify, or delete accordingly. Their expectation is that each subsequent performance will be better than the previous. It is evolution at its best: survival of the fittest jokes…! For demos, it is survival of the fittest pathways and methods of delivery.

Consider: Comedians need to present material that is consistently remarkable. Should demos be any different? (No!)

  • When you use a prop or visual aid in a demo that really engages your audience and makes them light up, repeat it for the next group (that has the same or similar situation)
  • When you present a terrific pay-off screen or key report (an Illustration) that really resonates with the key player, reprise it the next time you demo to someone with the same or similar job title
  • When you tell a story that has the audience on the edge of their seats, keep it in the act
  • When you see the key member of your audience making notes about the Informal Success Story you just related, plan to do it again
  • And, of course, if you present capabilities that fall flat, take them out of your demo…!

Demo elements that were memorable – that were particularly remarkable – are the elements to harvest, refine, and reuse. Demos should evolve to incorporate the best material for each prospect situation.

Never Stop Learning!

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