Years ago, I had no idea what a pitch was. To make it “perfect” wasn’t in my line of thinking.
A “pitch” can mean a variety of things to different people, but in the world of being an entrepreneur, a pitch is the way you present your idea to those you meet. It could be a pitch to get potential investors, or a pitch to bring on potential clients.
Pitches are important because they are what sets the stage for future relationships. In your pitch, you are telling the person you are connecting with:
How you do business
How secure you are in your business
How you value relationships
How confident you are in what you do
How well you will treat new customers in the future
That’s a lot to say in just a few seconds.
Has This Ever Happened To You?
I went to an event over the weekend, and met a woman who started up her business back in 2013. I asked her what she did for a living, and in 30 seconds, she revealed everything I needed to know.
“I’m a graphic designer. I used to work for a company, but they let the marketing staff go, and after six months of looking, I decided to freelance. I’ve done a few jobs here and there; it covers my bills while I’m looking. But I really like the security of working for someone else. Do you know anyone who is hiring? Or do you know anyone who needs graphic design?”
I bet you’ve met someone like that. You hear them, you feel for their situation, but in no way are you going to give them either your business or a referral to someone you know. That would simply be a set up for failure.
Unfortunately, what is easy to hear when other people say it, can be more difficult to hear when evaluating our own voice. After all, we live in the moment; our feelings and beliefs go way down deep inside, and we’re not afraid to release them when the time feels right. Even if its at the most inopportune time.
(And regrettably it’s always “wrong” when you release it to someone that can further what you want to do in the future with your Big Idea!)
When it comes to talking about what we do, I’ve found we approach it from a number of stages. The more we understand our Big Idea, the more connected we are to it, the more stable our business, the more comfortable we are with our current position, the more we move up this scale.
I’d Do It For Free Mentality
This is the person that states they would do it for free because they have so much passion for what they do. They even condemn professionals that charge large fees, stating people that truly care would never charge. In reality, they haven’t made the connection between what they enjoy as a hobby, and how to turn it into a viable business opportunity.
I Can Only Charge A Little Because I Don’t Have What It Takes
This person apologizes for their newness in the field. They will tell you over and over again that they have a lot to learn, so they will offer you a deal to help them gain knowledge.
I Do What I Do Until Something Better Comes Along
This person tries out entrepreneurism just to see if it will fit. They may offer you a deal, but you better be prepared to be “dropped” if another more secure offer comes along.
I Charge What Everyone Else Charges Because I Don’t Know The Difference
This person has copying down pat. They’ve taken their products, services, prices, even systems from other people in the industry. When you ask for something unique, or an explanation, blank stares will greet you every time.
I Set The Stage
By the time a person reaches this stage, they understand what sets them apart from their competition. They have their pitch down, their story framed, and can make people say “wow” simply by the way they tell it. They sell without selling, impress without trying, and understand exactly why people buy from them. They take advantage of every opportunity before the first conversation ever takes place. They allow the potential customer to decide on their own timeframes, simply guiding things along as necessary.
Do you see yourself in any of these stages?
You won’t necessarily hit every stage. In some cases, you may utilize characteristics from more than one stage at a time.
While in some cases time is the only thing that will move you to a level of confidence where you set the stage with your business model, you can begin perfecting your pitch today with a few simple strategies.
Watch your words – the way you talk has everything to do with how you are perceived with those around you.
Avoid the negatives – negative words set the stage for negative action.
Practice – sitting down and scripting out what you want to say can sometime make all of the difference and give you the confidence you need to say it right.
Be clear – if you are clear and comfortable with your message, it’s more likely to come across clear and comfortable to the person in front of you.
Be happy today – if you always want something else in order to achieve success, you’ll never show your happiness for what you have today. Be in the now.
Perfect your pitch – Sometimes a clear understanding of the words you should use, the sentences you structure together, the way you place it into your marketing, and the way you approach others with what you have, has everything to do with your success. Sometimes you need a little help achieving that success.
Does that sound like you? Do you want to start out 2015 with a clear message as you approach business contacts this year?
Then I welcome you to join me for my first tele-training of the year: Perfect Your Pitch. I’m going to share with you a variety of tips that helped me Perfect My Pitch as I was first starting out, and allowed me to double my business year after year.
You see, there really isn’t a “magic pill” you can swallow that will make you say your message in a clearer fashion, but there are succinct rules you can follow to make the process a whole lot easier.
That’s what I’ll be sharing on January 29, 2015. Will you be there?