How to Always Win Your Pitch (Within Reason)

August 12, 2015 at 2:58 pm (Innovation, Rant, Thinking) (, , , , , )

Whether you’re pitching an idea, interviewing for a job, or reporting on the outcome of a project, you need to communicate well if you expect a positive reception. Ideally you want to be able to not just manage to hold your audiences’ attention, but to have them be interested in what you’re saying.

Let’s think a moment about the first presentations we’ve attended in our lives. As a child, you’ve likely had a parent tell you a story or read from a storybook, right? This is exactly the same as a presentation; it has one party telling another about a situation with a goal in mind (granted, usually this goal is to get you to go to sleep after).

So here’s what we can take away from those experiences: always tell a good story. The pure facts are rarely enough (unless they’re all that’s required of course); you need context to explain why they’re important.

As an exercise, let’s take a look at a sales pitch. The first pitch is just the facts; they’re not wrong, but it is the bare bones.

“Our product helps customers protect against robot army invasions”

Now let’s look at an alternate version of this sales pitch. Here we tell a story complete with a relatable character and situation.

“Beth is a single parent who works hard at life. Between taking her son to soccer practice and running her business, she doesn’t have the time to wonder if her home is secure against a robot uprising. That’s why she trusts in our product to handle the burden of preparation against all forms of robot invasions, both planetary and interplanetary.”

Which do you think paints a more compelling picture for a product pitch? Sure, the first option gives me the facts without a big reading investment, however it lacks context. It doesn’t tell me how the product will actually affect my life beyond just insurance against robots.

The conclude this article, if you want to become more captivating, persuasive, and win your pitch, you have to learn how to engage your audience. Tell a good story that does more than just spew out facts. Everybody has facts; differentiate yourself.

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