In sales, training, marketing, and other disciplines product demonstrations are often paired with slide presentations. The slides provide the context and messaging and the demo delivers the actual thing you’re trying to explain.
But unless you’ve delivered the same demo 20+ times, there’s usually more than a touch of anxiety as you click away from your presentation to your demo.
Will logging into the demo account work?
Is the Internet access in this room fast enough?
Why is my sales engineer going on and on in this demo?
Recording your demo ahead of time and embedding that video into your presentation helps relieve much of the stress you and your team experience during demonstrations. Certainly, there are situations where only a truly live demo will suffice, but I would venture that a recorded demo does the trick in the majority of situations.
Adding a recorded demo to your presentation enables you to:
#1 Reduce the risk of technical glitches
#2 Deliver your best demo, every time
#3 Create a demo asset that can be used again and again
#4 Deliver the presentation and demo without clicking between tabs/applications
#5 Stay on message (and on time)
#6 Break your demo into bite sized snippets rather than one “mega” demo
#7 Introduce a demo into more meetings
#8 Create a “self-serve” demo asset for your website, YouTube, etc.
Using a screencasting tool like Camtasia (which is what we use here at SlideRocket) is a great, relatively simple way to screencast a demonstration in video format. It will take a bit of experimenting to get fully comfortable with the software, but you’ll find it’s actually pretty simple to capture the recording and edit it down to the portions you want to keep. Most tools offer a full-featured free trial.
Separate Voice From Visuals
Unless you’re a screencast wizard, we recommend using your chosen software just for the visuals. This will make it much easier to stay focused on clicking, rather than talking. This simplifies editing and will result in fewer “takes”. You can add the voiceover later directly onto your slides, just like when you pre-record a webinar. Or, you can deliver the voiceover portion live, which enables you to tailor the message to your audience.
Keep it Short
Resist the urge to show every nitty gritty feature. If there’s a lot to show, we recommend breaking your demo into pieces and placing them across several slides.
Limit Text on the Page
Keep the message that’s on your demo slide nice and brief. It should simply orient the viewer to what they’re about to see. The design too should be relatively simple.
Video Or YouTube
After you create your screencast you can upload it to YouTube or keep it as a video file. You’ll be able to embed the video or YouTube on to your slide with ease. If you have a strong internet connection YouTube works fine, if not go with the video file.