How to Fake a Live Demo

A demo is one of the most powerful marketing tools in your arsenal. When done well, a high-quality demo gives you an opportunity to tout new features, answer specific questions, and ultimately land sales. But what happens when you need to demo a solution that isn’t quite ready yet? Well, you can always simulate a live demo. Ready to learn how?

Demos Create Believers

Your sales team’s job is to open the hearts, minds, and wallets of your target market. To do that, a demo helps prove the value of your product, showing prospects exactly what problem you’re able to solve for them. However, you may find yourself in a situation where you don’t actually have a product to demo. Maybe your team is close, but your software isn’t yet gold code. Or perhaps you’re at a point where you’d like to gain feedback from a focus group before moving forward.

So, what happens then? You still need the power of a demo to show how your software will work. To avoid a presentation that’s uninspired, use tech to your advantage to really wow your audience. 

Here’s How to Simulate a Live Demo

Ready to create a little sales magic? Use a simulated live demo for anything from an investment pitch to a critical sales meeting. It’s also great for prototyping. 

Here’s the secret formula:

  1. Gather all of your product screenshots. 
  2. Drop them into a slide deck and arrange them in order. Don’t forget intermediate steps like menus, drop downs, etc. (PowerPoint or Google Slides will do the trick.) 
  3. Here’s the magic touch: Animate each screen  to advance to the next slide (this works great on a tablet).
  4. Practice, practice, practice. 

Protip: If you add a little faux uncertainty during the presentation, it can really help sell the illusion. For example, “Now let’s take a look at…” [Here, give a long pause, like you’re trying to decide what to select.]  

It should go without saying that we always recommend you be honest about the current state of your product; otherwise, you’ll lose all credibility. But it’s likely there will come a time when you want or need to show off your software before it’s fully baked. 

How It Works

By setting up your demo presentation so that touching anywhere on the screen automatically moves to the next screenshot, your product can come alive. Let’s say you start with a screen that shows your product’s dashboard. In your live presentation, you can explain the dashboard’s features to your audience before selecting the next menu option. When you touch a specific portion of the screen, your presentation will move automatically to the next slide (a screen of wherever you’d land next after selecting that feature). The effect is that you’ve just selected the menu option in real time, the same way it will operate when your software is fully functional. 

Protip: When presenting, act like where you touch or click within the screen really matters, even though you know it doesn’t.


 

via GIPHY

For this to be successful, the flow of your presentation has to be carefully crafted and well practiced. In addition, you can build out a flow that’s even more detailed. For example, you might want to highlight several different user paths in your live demo. In this case, you can set up your presentation so that touching anywhere on the screen moves you through a particular sequence of screens, and then a different hotkey (ex: touching the bottom left corner of your tablet) returns you to a previous screen in order to showcase an alternate user path.

Creating a Simulated Demo Video

We can apply these principles to the creation of a compelling demo video even before your software is fully functional. Our team is skilled at animating still screens of your product in a way that successfully showcases your offering. The addition of dynamic visuals (such as charts, graphs, menus, or other features that move fluidly or update automatically) is another way to elevate your demo. This attention to detail can really help engage prospects and bring them along for a journey that’s interactive and tangible.

Converting Prospects to Believers

You can’t make your software work before it’s ready. But you can use existing tools and technology to create a dynamic presentation that’s almost as good as the real thing. Simulating a live demo is your rabbit in a hat, and if you do it well, it can really wow your audience. After all, whether you’re using a live product or only replicating functionality for now, your goal is to show users how you’re making something better for them. Ta-da!

Have software in development that you’re ready to bring to life in a demo video? Get in touch

 

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