Checklist for a Sales Leave Behind Deck

A great leave behind deck is an essential part of any salesperson's arsenal. Make sure your leave behind leaves a lasting impression with this checklist!
Matt Talbot
Matt Talbot
CEO of Superchart
March 20, 2023
Improve Your Presentation Skills by Utilizing a Checklist for a Sales Leave Behind Deck

The key to a great sales process is a great follow-up. The best salespeople are not only diligent in getting meetings but excellent at following up after a meeting, quickly and professionally.

Nothing can slow down a sales process or kill the vibe like sending a sloppy, error-filled "leave behind" deck to a prospect. Doing this can ruin your credibility and make you, and your team, look careless. Yikes.

The good news is that there is a fairly easy way to make sure you don’t make a fool of yourself in front of an important lead: use a checklist to sanity-check your leave-behind materials!

What is a Leave Behind?

When you provide potential customers with supplemental information after a presentation, you're reinforcing the ideas you pitched and helping to move the sale forward. This is generally referred to as a leave behind. The leave behind meaning comes from sales processes in a pre-digital world. You're best chance to make an impression was a live, in-person sales meeting. All touch points at that meeting were important, especially what you left behind for the customer. Traditionally, this would be handed out before the presentation for attendees to jot notes, but would also include additional materials the attendees could walk away with and pass along to others.

In today's largely digital sale environment, it's not as common to pass out a printed sales deck or informational PDF (although it still happens all the time). Nevertheless, this type of leave behind follow-up material is still considered best practice. Providing follow-up materials as a leave behind shows that you're thoughtful and professional - two traits that any good customer will appreciate.

There are a few key things to remember when putting together your leave behind deck: make sure it's well-organized, error-free, and visually appealing. Use this guide as a checklist to generate leave behind ideas. Make sure your materials are top-notch and ready to impress!

Why Use a Checklist for a Leave Behind Deck

A checklist may seem like a relatively simple mechanism, but checklists are surprisingly powerful.

Author Atul Gawande even dedicated an entire book to examining the power of checklists and how using them regularly can create better outcomes.

Checklists, according to Gawande, help reduce errors of ineptitude. Errors of ineptitude are made when we have sufficient knowledge but we don’t make the right use of this knowledge. Sloppy errors in a sales leave behind deck are certainly great examples of errors of ineptitude. Certainly, every salesperson knows that sending a prospect a deck that has a different prospect's name or has inconsistent branding is not a great look. However, everyone is busy and mistakes can happen, so the best way to reduce the likelihood of a mistake that negatively affects your sales process is to employ a checklist.

Checklists are invaluable tools in any sales process. They help to ensure that, no matter how busy or distracted we may be, our leave behind decks will be free of errors and provide a polished, professional finish. They save us from ourselves.

A well-crafted checklist can help you stay on track and make sure all the components of the leave behind deck have been considered and accounted for.

Checklist items can include things like making sure all contact information is correct, that branding is consistent, that any images used are high quality, and that there are no typos or grammatical errors. Additionally, checklists can also be used to consider more creative elements such as incorporating graphics or video clips, using different font styles or colors to draw attention to key points, ensuring readability on multiple devices, or including call-to-action buttons throughout the deck. By utilizing checklists we can make sure our leave behinds stand out from the crowd and engage potential customers in ways that go beyond simple facts and figures. Ultimately this means a better chance at converting prospects into customers!

Major Items to Double-Check in Your Leave Behind

One of the worst things you can do is send content to a prospect that is meant for someone else, so first things first, do a thorough check of any references to a customer name, customer branding, or customer-specific notes, and make sure you avoid the most fatal mistake in static sales materials.

Second, you must spend a few minutes carefully checking all spelling and grammar throughout your deck. A simple grammatical error can reduce the quality of your deck, so this is worth the extra effort.

Third, make sure that you have updated and consistent branding throughout your deck. This doesn’t just mean colors and logos, but also fonts and general brand style guidelines, such as image treatment and icons.

Example Checklist for Sales Leave Behind Decks

  • Check all of your brand logos
  • Check all of your colors to make sure they are brand approved
  • Check other design elements such as images and icons to make sure they follow brand guidelines
  • Check all spelling (make sure you don't just rely on spellcheck - it can occasionally miss industry terms)
  • Ensure all grammar is correct, including punctuation
  • Look for extra spaces or accidental line breaks  
  • Identify and double-check any references to the customer's name
  • Ensure you are using the most updated customer logo
  • Make sure to include your contact details (phone and email address)
  • Check all facts and figures about your company to make sure they are accurate
  • Make sure pricing is accurate and ties our if there are any calculations
  • Ensure all pages are numbered
  • Make sure there are no extra slides that shouldn't be included in the appendix
  • Check the print area to make sure the deck is print ready  
  • Check all dates to ensure they are accurate
  • Make sure you are using consistent font sizing across all titles as well as body text
  • If using any data visualizations, make sure all axes are labeled and readable, and include legends where applicable
  • Check the file size to make sure it is the right size however you plan to share (if via email, aim for less than 10MB)
  • Auto-reduce the deck if the file size is too large
  • Check the title of the file to make sure it is accurate and professional
  • Check all product screenshots to make sure they are appropriate for the prospect and use case

Additional Leave Behind Ideas

Beyond leave behind sales decks, there is a variety of other leave behind materials that can be used to engage and inform potential customers. Some additional ideas include:

Product Samples: This is a great way to give potential customers a tangible representation of your product or service. If you provide physical products, samples are an easy and impactful way to engage customers. For services, product samples could be in the form of a voucher for a free consultation or trial period.

Brochures: Brochures can be used to provide an overview of your business and explain your offering in more detail. They can also include information about upcoming events, promotions, and discounts, all of which can help drive customer engagement and loyalty.

Posters & Flyers: Posters and flyers are great for getting the word out about your business. Whether it’s promoting an event or advertising new products or services, they can help spread the word quickly and effectively. Additionally, they can be used in areas with high foot traffic such as shopping plazas or city streets to capture the attention of passers-by.  

Infographics: Infographics are visually appealing and convey complex information in simple terms. They can be used to educate customers on how your products or services work, highlight key points about your business, explain industry trends, etc. In addition to being informative, infographics are also shareable which helps spread the word about your company quickly and easily.

Videos & Animations: Videos and animations present a fun and engaging way to showcase what makes your company unique. They are great for capturing customer attention, conveying complex information clearly (especially if accompanied by narration), and leaving behind something that customers will remember long after they have left their meeting with you.

These are just some ideas of different materials that could be used as part of a leave behind strategy – the possibilities are endless! With careful planning and creative execution, you’re sure to come up with something that resonates with potential customers and stands out amongst competitors!

In Conclusion

A great way to ensure that you make a great impression on your prospects is to deliver a high-quality, error-free deck. Use our checklist to make sure you are doing just that!

If you're wanting to include beautiful charts with Airtable or Google Sheets data, be sure to try Superchart for free.

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