How to Make an Impact
in Business. Advice on Investor and Financial Presentations, Pitch Coaching and Presentation Training

Essential tips from Benjamin Ball Associates

How to transform your success in business or pitching to investors?

Clients have asked us to improve pitches, presentations & talks for 10+ years. When you work with us you get practical advice, coaching and training to achieve your objectives.   Contact us today

How to pitch your private equity fund at an event

Six ways to pitch your private equity fund at an event

March 1, 2017

You are at a private equity conference. It’s one of those events, like SuperReturn, that's designed to help LPs and GPs meet. You want to identify LPs who may be interested in your private equity fund. Assuming you get a meeting with an investor...

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Why good public speaking skills make you a better leader

November 11, 2016

Do your leadership public speaking skills inspire, motivate and influence others? They should. Many leaders are nervous of public speaking. Some even avoid it. According to Forbes magazine: 20 per cent of business leaders say they would do anything to avoid giving a presentation....

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How do you pitch investors?

September 21, 2016

What do investors really want? Six tips We wrote this piece with our Private Equity clients in mind. But there are good lessons here for anyone pitching to investors or delivering new business pitches. What does it take to be a top deal-closer? During...

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Why good body language is the best visual aid for your talks

July 27, 2016

Better Body Language for your Presentations The best (or worst) visual aid for your talks is you. You and your body language are the focus of attention in your presentations. Not your PowerPoint slides. In fact, many of the best speakers - politicians, comedians,...

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“What should I do with my hands?” – Speakers’ body language for leaders

July 27, 2016

Our clients frequently ask, "What should I do with my hands?". As soon as we become conscious of our bodies, they get in our way. When we’re faced with an audience, we become like learner drivers, unable to operate all the controls smoothly. Advice...

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What can private equity fund managers learn from Prof. Brian Cox?

July 27, 2016

Do you look forward to watching TV documentaries about science? For the majority of people, the reply is ‘no’. Put Professor Brian Cox at the centre of a series though, and the answer, for millions, becomes ‘yes’. The pop star of particle physics, Cox...

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How to end a speech – like a championship boxer

June 30, 2016

How do you end a speech powerfully? Great boxers finish fights by throwing a knockout punch. Great speakers do the same thing with their conclusions - using powerful language in place of right hooks. Using a verbal knockout to end your speech gives maximum...

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Checklist to prepare for a media interview

May 20, 2016

Checklist of top tips to prepare for media interviews. When interviewed live, you have no second chance. Critics are waiting to pounce on any errors or weaknesses. The repercussions of a poor media interview can be huge. Usually you don't have a huge amount...

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How to structure your presentation – three short words

April 15, 2016

How do you structure your presentation for impact? Do you know what you want to say, and the order you want to say it in? Try this quick test of your presentation structure: First, rearrange your presentation structure.  Change the order of your slides...

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The Best Investor Presentation – How to create one – techniques from psychology

April 13, 2016

Five ways to create the best investor presentation If you want investment, you need the best investor presentation. But investment decision-making is not totally rational. Are you using all the tricks to be more persuasive in your investor presentations? Psychology techniques can nudge even...

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Legal Pitches: How using stories will help you win more business

March 16, 2016

Why use stories in your legal pitches? Stories appeal to the right-hand side of the brain, bypassing the logical and judgemental left-hand side.  That's why they are so powerful in pitches. We make decisions quickly and emotionally, then try to back them up rationally....

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How to make a boring presentation more interesting

March 14, 2016

There are simple ways to make a boring presentation more interesting. If you talk about a dry topic in a dull manner, your audience will struggle to stay attentive. Instead, you need to make an impact and make it memorable. This can feel intimidating: some...

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Three steps to effective charity presentations

March 7, 2016

Three steps to effective charity pitches and fundraising presentations UK charities are under pressure. The fallout from the Kids Company collapse continues to put the spotlight on governance and fundraising methods are very much under scrutiny. Effective charity pitches and presentations are more essential...

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Do your pitches pass the Takeaway Test?

March 7, 2016

How do people talk about you after your pitches? We call this The Takeaway Test. If you give a succinct and memorable takeaway that sums up your value proposition, this will help clients  form a distinct image of you and your offer. The Takeaway...

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How to create a powerful investor elevator pitch

March 7, 2016

A great elevator pitch is an essential part of your pitch toolkit Last month I chaired the Quickfire Showcase elevator pitch competition at Berlin’s SuperReturn, the annual Private Equity Conference. Funds get just 90 seconds to pitch to a room full of investors, who...

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How to use stories for more persuasive Private Equity pitches

March 1, 2016

Why use stories in your Private Equity pitches? We all make decisions quickly and emotionally, then justify them rationally. When you use stories in your private equity pitch you get access to the emotional decision-making centre of the brain. As Maya Angelou said, people...

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How do prospective clients talk about you after your legal pitch?

February 2, 2016

After you’ve pitched to a client and they’ve returned to their offices, how do they talk about you and your legal pitch to their colleagues? We call this the ‘Takeaway Test’. Providing a succinct and memorable takeaway that sums up your value proposition will...

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How to start a speech or presentation – 4 great ways

January 13, 2016

How do you start a speech or presentation with impact? Think how you typically start a speech or presentation. Do you begin with any of these lines?:   - Hi, my name is … and I’m here to talk about… - Before I start, I want to introduce...

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Better private equity fundraising | Seven tips for first investor meetings

December 10, 2015

What do LPs want from private equity funds at first investor meetings? That's the question I put to the panel at SuperInvestor, the annual conference for private equity decision makers. On the panel were Catherine Lewis La Torre, Anna Dayn, Spencer Miller and Marc...

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What’s the worst private equity pitch you’ve seen?

December 8, 2015

How to lose respect and alienate investors I asked the LP panel at SuperInvestor 2015 what the worst private equity pitch they've ever seen was. On the panel were Catherine Lewis La Torre, Anna Dayn, Spencer Miller and Marc der Kinderen. Between them, they review 400 fund...

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Five ways to run a great Town Hall meeting

November 26, 2015

Town Hall meetings have become a calendar fixture at many large companies. Although originally based on New England citizens voicing their thoughts, the term Town Hall meeting is often just another name for traditional, top-down presentations by senior management. So how can you make...

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Five reasons why employees are your most important audience

November 16, 2015

I reckon every leader has, at some point, announced ‘our people are our priority’. It’s so often said, but so rarely true when it comes to communication. Employees are often the last to know about corporate news that affects them, or to hear of...

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Better pitching for professional services

October 15, 2015

How do you best pitch a professional services firm? Most professional services firms have problems differentiating themselves. When all your competitors are also qualified professionals, it is hard to stand out. Ask any lawyer, banker, actuary or accountant. Clichéd phrases will not help you....

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PRESS RELEASE: Paul Farrow of Fishburn Joins Benjamin Ball Associates as Partner

September 30, 2015

London – Paul Farrow, former Managing Director and head of Financial & Professional Services at PR agency Fishburn, has joined Benjamin Ball Associates, the leading financial presentation and media training company, as Partner. Paul brings to Benjamin Ball Associates his experience from five years...

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Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking in Three Steps

September 15, 2015

Do you fear public speaking? Do you feel nervous when you stand up and speak?  Does it make your heart race or your body go sweaty? Fear of public speaking is widespread.  When we coach people to become better public speakers, it’s one of...

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Ten Commandments for A Great Conference Talk

August 21, 2015

While every conference talk is different, there are some rules that apply to any talk. These simple rules, can make your conference talk into a great conference talk. Because ignoring these commandments will lead you into Death by PowerPoint.   1. Thou shalt aim...

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How do you make complex things simple?

August 21, 2015

"Making the simple complicated, that's easy. "Making the complex simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity." Charles Mingus   The best communication tends to be simple. Whether it's memorable phrases from history or literature: "Jesus Wept", "I came, I saw, I conquered" great adverting slogans: Just...

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Private Equity Fundraising Highlights from SuperReturn 2015 in Berlin

June 11, 2015

Private Equity Fundraising There were 1700 delegates at SuperReturn in Berlin last week. Benjamin Ball chaired an afternoon of private equity fundraising discussions with: Marc St John, CVC Capital Partners; Bob Brown, Riverstone; Mounir Guen, MVision; Martin Dunnett, Warburg Pincus; Catherine Lewis La Torre,...

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The Power of Words, Just Words – Barack Obama Speech Extract

May 28, 2015

The Power of Words - an example This extract from Barack Obama's Feb 2008 speech shows how powerful words can make powerful messages. This was in response to criticism Obama received about being 'all words.' See how Obama harnesses the power of words to...

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Create Better Presentations – the Harry Potter Way

March 5, 2015

What can we learn from Harry Potter about better presentations? One simple rule:  Like magic, PowerPoint is powerful, and to do good it has to be used properly. Let me explain. Like the magic in Harry Potter, PowerPoint is a powerful tool. And the...

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How To Tell Stories in Business Presentations

March 5, 2015

Use stories in business presentations Last week I was at a leadership event. It was about a firm’s cost-cutting plans. The organisers had crammed the day with speakers, each hand-picked to inspire and motivate. The mood was intense. Then, one of the keynote speakers...

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Leadership Communications: How to speak like a leader?

November 18, 2014

Another leader that makes a refreshing change is Tesco’s new CEO, Dave Lewis. Tesco has been in the news for all the wrong reasons lately. The supermarket giant’s share price has plummeted 50% in a year. Falling sales, boardroom reshuffles, and increased competition from...

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Leadership Communications: are you a good talker or a good communicator? Part 1

November 18, 2014

Communication skills are ranked as the number one skill a business leader requires.  That is why leaders spend an extraordinary amount of time and effort honing those skills. Successful communicators don’t just talk big ideas, they speak to their audience, echoing their emotions and...

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Better Communication Skills Training – for HR and L&D teams

October 2, 2014

Communication Skills Training - for businesses For an quick overview of our communication skills training supporting HR and L&D teams, please download our new communications skills training booklet.       How to improve your communication skills   This booklet includes these Five Essential...

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Financial Presentations: Fashions Fail, Drugs Deliver

September 19, 2014

. . It was the middle of August - that usually quiet time on the markets - when handbag and accessory maker Kate Spade saw its busiest day of trading ever. 52 million shares changed hands. Alas, people couldn’t get out quick enough. Shares...

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What to do next

Call Louise Angus, Client Services Director today to discuss how we can help or for a free consultation:
Phone: +44 020 7018 0922

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