Is it Time to Ditch the Pitch?

I read an article recently that suggested it was time to ditch the pitch. Their argument was that in today’s world people have already googled the product, read the reviews and the pitch has become redundant.

There are a couple of myths that this argument buys into. One, that good product will sell themselves and two, pitches are all about telling and selling
So do we need to ditch the pitch? Or, do we rethink how we pitch?

Here are five steps to perfect your pitch

1. What is your objective

Know what you want. Is this an elevator pitch to get an appointment? Is your goal to ascertain start-up capital or receive a grant? Do you want to disrupt their thinking in order to create a new market?
Each pitch needs an individual objective and needs to be tailored accordingly.

2. It’s ALL about them

Yes, you need to establish your credibility and they will want to know that you can deliver on your promises. But unless you tailor your presentation to meet their wants and needs you won’t proceed to the next stage.

The three things they’ll want to know are:

1. What is the opportunity/market/problem?
2. What is your solution/fit?
3. Who are you, what is your commitment and can I work with you?

3. Clarity is king

Tailor your pitch to meet your objective and meet their WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) Pitch your presentation at a level they’ll understand. Avoid industry jargon and focus on getting them excited!

4. Plan your length

If you are promoting a product or service, you need to develop four pitches:

• The grab – Explain your product/ idea in 10 seconds
• Elevator pitch – a 90-second pitch to entice
• The 5-minute persuasive executive summary
• 10-minute pitch presenting a business plan with financials

5. Uncover questions and practice your reply

Questions are not objections – they are buying signals. Prepare a mind map on your product, overlay that with an argument map and ensure you come into the meeting prepared to answer curly questions.

If you find all of this overwhelming – it’s OK I’m here to help.

For me, 2016 was the year of the pitch. Here are a few of my successful clients from last year:

♦  Rachel Kidwell win venture capital funding for TCPinpoint

♦  Australian MassChallenge. Four of the ten winners were coached by me

o Edufolios: ePortfolio for Australian teachers.
o Freddi: business process automation for SMEs.
o a stop smoking app.
o PsyberSafe: preventing predator grooming of children online.

♦  Professor Rebekah Brown Director of the Monash Sustainable Development Institute win $14 million research grant

I also help academia secure fellowships, organisations with their town hall meetings and companies win tenders.

I love it – Essentially I live vicariously through your success – let me know what I can help you with.

Sharon Ferrier
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All Good Presentations Start With a Confident Speaker

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