Monday, September 07, 2009

Stunningly Awful Demos: Five Things Not To Do in a Demo


Five things to avoid in a demo. (And I know I have been guilty of each one of these as I learned how to present a product in front of a large audience – I used to present Feature Analyst and Lidar Analyst at user conferences and training sessions)

Here is a summary dump from the post (but I suggest you read the article as it describes every point in detail).


  1. Misunderstand the customer’s needs: “Harbor Cruise.”
    Do the research to figure out what your customers need in advance.
  2. Start with a corporate overview: “Death by Corporate Overview…”
    Get right to it. Don’t start the meeting with twenty minutes of corporate overview. Your corporate overview won’t matter unless you suck the audience in with your demo.
  3. Present a linear demo from beginning to end: “In the Beginning…”
    dont deliver long, linear demos that take forty or sixty minutes to reach the pay-off. The order of the day is to show a great result and then briefly show how easy it is to produce it.
  4. Do a feature dump: “Here’s Another Thing You Can Do.”
    You shouldn’t present your demo as if it’s product training: “Let me show you how to do this, that, and this other thing…” Explaing all of the menus, tabs, navigation and customization capabilities is a sure way to inflict pain.
  5. Show the same demo: “Everyone Loves This Feature.”
    If you use the same demo no matter who’s in the room, you will bore the senior customer participants, and they will leave early. You’ll have done training for the end-users, but the training won’t be necessary since you won’t get the deal!

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