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Famed Los Angeles Dodger pitcher Sandy Koufax, the youngest player ever to be inducted to the Baseball Hall of Fame, once said, "I became a good pitcher when I stopped trying to make them miss the ball and started trying to make them hit it." What he meant was that the best pitchers don't try to always strike batters out; rather, they try get batters to pop up or ground out.

In sales, however, a good pitch is one where you hit it out of the park, and the best tool for doing that is a presentation. Business presentations help convey your company's message and drive action; but, without the right strategy, you're more likely to hit a popup or to ground out.

One of the easiest mistakes to make if you give business presentations regularly is to recycle the same slides, especially if they are nothing but large blocks of text and bullet points. Your presentation slides shouldn't play like a broken record; they should change depending on the audience you're presenting to. Moreover, if you're going to monotonously read bullets from the same PowerPoint over and over again, you might as well just send it over to the prospect... There's no need to show up, because anyone can read from a deck.

Of course, that approach doesn't make for an effective strategy. Certainly, you won't hit it out of the park.

We know that building, editing, and sharing a compelling presentation isn't an easy task; it's not particularly cheap, either. Companies spend all kinds of resources on advertising, PR, and other types of corporate communications, but for some reason they have no workflows to ensure presentations are on brand, up to date, and proven to convert. Hours, even weeks, are spent on a presentation that gets used once for one meeting, then gets lost on the network somewhere: one and done.

But with an efficient presentation management strategy in place, your business will instantly witness an enormous impact across the enterprise.

Modernizing for Efficiency

A presentation tells the business's story. Any forward-looking company should be continually refining its presentations, whether that means supplementing sales decks with product updates, incorporating multimedia items, or tracking files and slides.

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image of AlexAnndra Ontra

AlexAnndra Ontra is a co-founder and the president of Shufflrr, an on-demand document management solution for dynamic presentations. She is the author of Presentation Management: The New Strategy for Enterprise Content.

LinkedIn: AlexAnndra Ontra