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Q: My clients needs a multimedia presentation to present their engineering manufactirung business.

The current powerpoints are inadaquate and top heavy, and need a complete rethink.

We want to highlight our products and services, with interactivity so the client can dig into detail.

We’ll probably need some video filming.

We also need advice on how to plan the production – and any other multimedia tips you can offer

Marketing Agency MD
South West UK

A: Producing a new multimedia presentation to replace numerous powerpoints is increasingly, in 2011, a common requirement, especially from clients who sell technical products and services.

It usually requires an initial rethink of how sales are made, and how major account business is to be targeted.

Think of it as building your sales DNA.

Typically manufacturers think in silo-mode – ie they plan their sales message around their product divisions – what they build and sell.

A rethink focuses more on presenting what end-users want want to buy, eg, cross-divisional solutions, with a complete end to end design, implementation and service/maintenance package.

This is a whole world different than simply buying a range of technical products from a catalogue, even if the end result is the same.

It’s about client perception & client focus to deliver greater company growth.

Multimedia Creativity

Only once the core business messages are agreed does the actual creative graphic presentation process begin.

This involves visualising fresh ways to present their product / solution range.

Typically, animation, motion graphics, effects, and unique slides (template avoidance) are necessary to create a compelling look and feel.

Interactive menus will be needed so clients can navigate to their areas of interest, rather than sit through a one-size-fits-all style of presentation.

Voiceover is also an essential part of a modern multimedia presentation, as are music and effects. Great audio should never be underestimated.

You’ll probably need three versions of your multimedia presentation:

  • A click-through version where the presenter speaks and clicks through each slide
  • An autorun version where everyone just watches the show.
  • A Talking Brochure version for client champions to play their colleagues in your absence.

This will increase the production cost, but it’ll also increase the payback.

Each version will be delivered as an exe file.

Some of the multimedia presentation can also be streamed as video on your website – ready to impress your site visitors.

You could even post it to your Facebook page, as well as alert all your linkedin and social media partners.

Overall you should work to produce an interactive multimedia presentation style that will stand the test of time, and still be as effective in 2014 and 2015 as it is today.

Further information on interactive multimedia presentations can be found here:

Video Production

Video can be woven into your multimedia presentation to demonstrate equipment, or machine performance.

For example, combining real live video with graphic overviews of system structures (schematics and wire frames) enables the viewer to understand precisely the technical features on offer.

I’d also suggest a short video be produced – maybe a 60 second corporate video with voiceover and music sound track.

This will enable the audience to quickly grasp your overall scope and capability.

Shooting video will probably mean tidying up the plant, and all the machine areas, so that when the camera crew arrive, you look your very best on film.

Today’s True 1080 HD camera specification is great for factories as the superior film quality makes plant look better.

And stylish attractive video will further distance your multimedia presentation from your competitor’s PowerPoint slides.

Initial Planning Schedule

While a stunning creative multimedia presentation will be the end result, success will hinge on careful planning in detail, so the multimedia presentation accurately reflects the business’s offering – from a customer point of view.

I’d suggest the following programme:

Fact Finding Meeting This is where you, the multimedia producer, the MD, the Sales Director, Technical Director (and any other key players) all sit together for 2 – 3 hours to brainstorm:

– what customers really want
– what really drives new business development, particularly major account new business
– how to improve cross-selling opportunities
– how to beat competitors
– how to look bigger and better

This collective intelligence will be priceless.

It will lay the foundation for consistently more successful selling to bigger, better accounts.

It’ll also start the process of creativity for their multimedia presentation.

Script Development Meeting Here the team will determine multimedia presentation content and agree a Production Schedule to completion. Subsequently a script will be written up for comment/approval

Storyboard Development Meeting

Only once the script is agreed should the visuals be worked out. This is where you’lll finalise filming details. The end product will be a professional storyboard document – a Book of the Movie – showing the final multimedia presentation content.

Multimedia Presentation Summary

Before you begin producing your multimedia presentation, you’ll need to cover all the above points with your manufacturer client.

They’ll need to be eager to embrace the process – otherwise you’ll only end up with the same old PowerPoint complexity wrapped in a superficially new skin.

Great multimedia presentations do genuinely increase sales, so this is their motivation.

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