That Leads to Contacts and Contracts

Let’s talk about one of my favorite subjects: making an unforgettable impression in business. You know, the kind of impression that not only lands the deal it also solidifies your reputation as someone people simply must do business with.

A Tip of the Hat to Business Success

I’m sure you’ve seen me in one of my distinctive hats. It’s not just a fashion statement—it’s a strategic choice. When I don a fabulous hat, people often walk across the room just to compliment it. And just like that, we’re in a conversation. In sales and networking, starting a conversation is often the hardest part. With my hat serving as an icebreaker, we can smoothly transition into more significant topics, such as how my expertise can enhance their business.

The Art of the Sale

Now you’ve got their attention—what now? I’ve always believed that the best salespeople know how to steer the conversation in a way that matters to the prospect. It’s not enough to recite a litany of your company’s achievements or services. Instead, you need to focus on their pain points and how you can provide solutions.

When a prospect says, “Tell us about your company,” translate that in your mind to, “How can my company benefit from doing business with you?” Tailor your response to speak directly to their needs and desires.

Common Pitfalls and Effective Strategies

Of course, a hat and a smooth talk won’t carry you all the way. I’ve consulted for dozens of companies on their sales presentations, and there’s always room for improvement. If you’re curious about what not to do, take a look at my downloadable PDF, “11 Mistakes Sales Professionals Make in Their Presentations.” It’s an invaluable resource that pinpoints common errors while offering actionable remedies.

Quick Recap

Wear something distinctive (like my fabulous hats, interesting ties, amazing scarves, jewelry, and clothes) to break the ice and start conversations.

Focus your discussion on the prospect’s needs, not just a list of your services.

Avoid common mistakes by educating yourself and continually honing your presentation skills.

So, the next time you’re headed to a tradeshow or a big pitch meeting, consider donning something distinctive and being ultra-prepared. After all, when your message must be memorable, your presentation powerful, and your sales successful, I’m here to help. Cheers!

Take advantage of my Special Report 11 Biggest Mistakes Sales Professionals Make in Their Presentations

11 Mistakes you do not want to make in your sales presentations
Steve Spangler is fired up over the ideas in Deliver Unforgettable Presentations

You may be sitting on a goldmine of untapped stories to use in your presentations, and you don’t even realize it.

How? By paying close attention to your everyday conversations. Let’s explore two ideas that may seem at odds but can work in tandem: The merit of recounting stories you’ve heard from others, versus the advice to rely solely on your own experiences.

Here’s the rule of thumb: If you recount stories from individuals who aren’t professional speakers or colleagues, then make them the hero of the tale. That adds credibility and intrigue to your presentation.

Once you actively listen and keep your senses alert, you’ll find an abundance of stories to enrich your presentations.

A Lesson in Exceptional Service: The Story of Gary Richter

Early in my career, I was speaking on good customer service at a banking conference. In the coffee break that followed I had the pleasure of meeting a very colorful character I have never forgotten. He told me he was Gary Richter, and was President of a boutique bank in Naples, Florida. He asked, “Patricia, if an elderly woman calls our bank at 5:20 PM to cash a $200 check, and she’s twenty minutes away, but we close at 5:30, what does good service look like?”


Give a Speech!

Every service club and community group is looking for a free speaker next Thursday at lunchtime. Okay, it could be Wednesday morning at breakfast or even in Zoom. You get the point! If that is you, do not overlook a magnificent marketing opportunity.

Here is a roadmap of everything you need to know about preparing your first speech or presentation. You may find this advice will serve you for an entire career. This insight comes from a time when my hairstyling clients invited me to speak to their Rotary, Kiwanis, and Breakfast Clubs. After two talks I realized, “This is the most fun and inexpensive way I can build my business.”

How Do You Get Invited?

Tell everyone you know you are willing and available to speak. Understand this is not a sales pitch for your company. Your message must be of interest and value. Your introduction, which you write yourself, gives the audience your credentials. Your name, company, mini bio, and speech title will be advertised to their members. Take advantage of the networking opportunity, and you can invite guests––perhaps friends, supporters, or happy clients.

Captivate every audience with a great story with a message.

You have 30 seconds to command the attention of your audience. Don’t waste it!

Certain speech openings captivate, mystify, and create an emotional bond that keeps an audience in the palm of the speaker’s hand. What would you give to learn those essential opening moves? Those great ways to bond instantly with an audience so that you never see them dozing off or wandering out of the room?

Here are three sure-fire ways to start, whether you are a sales trainer, keynote speaker, business presenter, or any business professional who speaks in front of a group or would like to.  It does not matter if your audience is in a board room, Zoom meeting, training center, or There is no right or wrong way to open, and these techniques are not presented in any preferred order. The best way to start depends on your style and the purpose of your message.


In today’s fast-paced world, capturing your audience’s attention is only half the battle.

The real challenge is to make your message stick, deliver it powerfully, and convert that engagement into successful sales. That’s where I come in.

Why Memorable Messages Matter

As you know from your own experience, the average person is exposed to thousands of messages every day—ads, emails, social media updates, and the list goes on. What sets your message apart? Specificity and relatability are crucial. Instead of generic platitudes, aim for targeted messages that resonate.

To create a memorable message, focus on:

Relevance: Tie your message to the needs and pain points of your audience or prospect.

Emotion: Stir feelings; people remember what made them feel, more than what they read.

Novelty: Offer a fresh perspective or innovative solution that differentiates you. I tell my clients, “If you sound the same are everyone else, you have no advantage.”


Your ability to engage an audience is more than just a technique; it’s a disciplined approach that weaves together various elements to create a captivating experience.

Following up from part one The Power of Your Opening – Unleash the Potential of the First 30 Seconds, discussed 5 opening techniques from my recent book with Darren LaCroix and Mark Brown, “Deliver Unforgettable Presentations

We delve into the different techniques that you can incorporate to make your opening powerful, persuasive, and unique.

Now in part two, we’ll explore more opening techniques to enrich your repertoire and command your audience’s attention.


Have you ever marveled at the energy that surges through a room when a speaker begins with just the right words? A room full of individuals, each one different, yet all captivated by the magic that unfolds in those first precious moments of a speech. For decades I have invested time exploring the ideas, formulas, and disciplines behind crafting the perfect presentation. The first 30 seconds of your presentation are not just a beginning; they’re a journey, an invitation, a challenge.

In my recent book with Darren LaCroix and Mark Brown, “Deliver Unforgettable Presentations,” we delve into the different techniques that you can incorporate to make your opening powerful, persuasive, and unique. The possibilities are endless, and here are some suggestions that will intrigue and engage your audience right from the start.

  1. A Story: Share a tale of triumph, mentorship, or personal growth. Audiences love stories. Your story can be that spark that ignites their imagination and connects them with you. What is deeply personal is also universal.
  2. Interesting Statistics or Little-Known Facts: Begin with something unexpected. “Would it amaze you to know that 90% of speakers miss the opportunity to captivate their audience in the first minute?” That’s right; a little surprise can go a long way. The true secret of using an interesting statistic or little-known fact is to add an emotion. Interest, surprise, shock, or amaze.
  3. A Powerful Quotation: A well-chosen quote can resonate deeply with your audience. Share wisdom from someone who has influenced you and tie it to your point rather than a well-known quote. For example, from one of my presentations…” As my father pushed me out the front door for my first day of work he told me, “Patricia, in our career do not concentrate on making a lot of money. Rather work to become the type of person others want to do business with and you most likely will make a lot of money.”
  4. A Question: Engage directly by asking something like, “How often have you struggled oh capture your audience’s attention?” Notice how often, not just have you. If the situation you mention has happened more than once, they need your advice more. Questions will help the audience reflect on their experiences and engage with your message.
  5. A Challenge: Set a tone of aspiration by challenging your audience. “I challenge you to embrace the techniques we’ll explore to become a more compelling communicator.” A challenge is expected at the end of your presentation however you can also begin with a challenge for your audience to take action, give them information to be in a position to take action, and restate your challenge near the close.

Rehearsal is the secret sauce to a memorable presentation that will leave your audience buzzing with excitement and wanting more!

Don’t even think about skipping this crucial step – it’s the ultimate key to unlocking your full potential as a speaker.

Step 1: Embrace the Power of Rehearsals

Once you’ve fine-tuned your talk, it’s showtime! Stand up, take a deep breath, and start rehearsing like a true professional. Read your talk out loud, paying close attention to your timing and emphasis. This will help you deliver your points with passion and conviction, leaving your audience hanging on your every word.

If you do not have a complete script do have your first few lines scripted and a strong outline that you use to rehearse what you intend to say.

Step 2: Ditch the Monotone and Connect with Your Audience


Tell me what you say you want. Show me one week of your life and I will tell you if you will get it. 

Every day is a good time to challenge everything you do, expand your thinking, refocus your efforts, and dedicate yourself to your future. If you haven’t done this already this year, why not do it today?

Adopt these five practices to reach your career goals:

5 Ways to Get The Professional Life You Want

1. Take advantage of every opportunity.

Before I became a Hall of Fame keynote speaker and in-demand executive speech coach, I began my career as a 15-year-old shampoo girl in a very ritzy salon in England. As I said on 60 Minutes, “I used to work on the outside of peoples’ heads, now I work on the inside, so there’s only half an inch difference.”

How did I transition into my second exciting career? By preparing for, learning from others, and seizing every opportunity that came my way.


Building an extraordinary relationship with your audience is vital for the success of your presentation. This relationship hinges on two crucial elements: intellectual and emotional connection. While logic engages your audience’s thinking, it is emotion that motivates them to take action.

The intellectual connection stems from the content you present and the logical reasoning you employ to make your case.

When you utilize charts, statistics, and survey results, you establish an intellectual bond with your audience.

For you to establish an emotional connection, on the other hand, is relatively easier.

The most effective way to achieve this is by using “you-focused” language, creating a balanced “I-You ratio.” Pay attention to how frequently you say “I” compared to “you” or “us.”