In today's busy world we can often find ourselves under prepared for those important presentations that can make us win or lose a big project, meaning late nights and panic as the big day approaches.
Dannie-Lu Carr, Director of Flaming Poppy, suggests five steps to consider regularly which will position you strongly for future pitch success.
1) Ask the question you're avoiding. There's always an area of concern for any client. So don't avoid it, go straight to it, validate it and then tell your client what you are able to do about it for them. Fluent communication and feedback in time can save you from future misunderstandings.
2) Use inspirational language. Steve Jobs' repetition of the word 'revolutionary' at the launch of the first iPhone has gone down in history because of how well it worked. Nobody can argue that the iPhone didn't catch on, right? Be confident in your speech and find catchy words to attract your audience’s interest.
3) Use quantitative examples which back up your pitch. People saying how fantastic something is can work sometimes, but evidence-based and tangible links will serve you much better. Statistics and numbers (used properly) will reaffirm the suitability of your project.
4) Use props, prototypes and images sparingly, but definitely use them. They help to engage your audience and visualise more clearly how your product or concept will sit with them. Remember the saying: “A picture is worth a thousand words”.
5) Allow a two-way conversation at any stage of the pitch. Waiting until the end to take questions is outdated and formulaic. People are more likely to disengage unless you keep them actively involved right through. You can clarify details with them too and add new insights while the presentation is on.
Just remember: your potential clients have probably seen hundreds of pitches before yours. Why should they choose you? Be different and original; state the benefits your project (and only yours) will bring to the business. It is also very important to do some research about the company prior to your presentation as it will help you find out more about who they’ve worked with in the past and what they expect for the future.
Now are you ready for the big pitch? Not yet? Well, maybe we have something that can help you on that. We've compiled some of the most bizarre pitching stories of all time into an e-book format that will certainly make your life easier next time to avoid those “Pitching Nightmares”…
Successful pitches to you all!!