Master the Technology
Whether it's Skype, WebEx, or a phone call, you need to have a mastery of the technology you're using for your presentation. Technology can be a great tool, but if it's used improperly, it can become a major distraction. There's nothing worse than losing your Wi-Fi connection in the middle of a Skype call and missing your opportunity to connect with a new client. Instead of falling victim to technology, you need to be prepared for the worst. Have a backup plan for every technology issue that could go wrong. If you're using Skype, make sure you have a strong Internet connection so that your audio and video feeds aren't interrupted. Sometimes, it's best to eliminate pieces of technology that could potentially pose a problem. Screen sharing can be useful, but if someone's computer isn't up to the task, this activity could end up leading to more problems than solutions.
Master the Art of the Hook
With a virtual presentation, your audience is even more likely to become bored or distracted than in a face-to-face presentation. Don't leave room and provide your audience with an opportunity to start checking their email or chatting with a co-worker; hook them in to presentation right from the start. Instead of starting off with a long, rambling introduction where you summarize the main points of your presentation, start off with something provocative, different and exciting. Tell an engaging personal story, use a shocking statistic, or ask a thought-provoking question. Do something to keep your audience where you want them: focused on you and your presentation.
Master the Art of Control
In order for your audience to follow along with your virtual sales presentation, they need to know that you are in control of the presentation and that your presentation has a clear purpose. Don’t leave your audience with the opportunity to ask themselves questions like: "How long will this take?" "What's the point of this presentation?" And "When do we get to ask questions?" Instead, show your audience that you are in control of the situation by telling them up-front what is going to happen when. State your goals clearly, lay out the agenda in advance, and leave lots of room for questions. This way, your audience always knows what's going on, and what's coming up next.
Virtual sales presentations are not easy. Most sales and business people have much more difficulty with this format than they do with traditional face-to-face presentations. This is why it's so important for you to see virtual presentations as an art form, and to master that art form. Once you do, you'll be above the rest of the crowd.