Women In Business

Why mastering your personal pitch matters and how to get better at it

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It’s the 21st Century, and yet selling is still a dirty word to so many business people. We’re not sure how or why this myth continues, without selling, nobody would have a business to speak of. It’s how you get noticed and how you bond with prospects and customers.

One of the key ways to sell yourself and your business is pitching. That is the ability to give a few minutes talk that sums up the advantages of working with you, for the person that you are talking to in a relevant and interesting fashion.

This isn’t like selling a dodgy second hand car (unless you are a dodgy second hand car dealer) this is selling the most important thing in the world: you. How you do it matters. So, let’s see how you can get better at pitching, today.

Work with a pitch coach

One thing that we’ve noticed is that the best way to get really good at something in a short period of time, is to work with somebody who can coach you through the pain barriers.

Pitching isn’t hard but it is a skill and the easiest way to learn that skill is invest in a pitch coach who can help you tailor your pitch to capture the essence of you.

A pitch is a story

Nobody wants to hear you waffle on about you. What they want to hear is something inspiring that convinces them to work with you. That means a pitch needs to be a story and not a commercial. Everyone can relate to a story, right?

When you tell your story – it needs to connect with the audience. That means identify their pain and show them how you can help overcome that pain. This creates a need.

Back your story up with some relevant statistics but don’t go overboard, you’re a person not a spreadsheet, show your humanity and people can connect with it.

Scope out the pitching ground

If at all possible, try and find out as much about the space you will be pitching in if you can. It can really help you become calm quickly if you feel familiar with the environment you’re in.

Whether or not that’s possible, when you arrive plant your two feet firmly on the floor and anchor yourself. Put your hands down by your side, casually. Scan the room and take a little time to acknowledge the audience’s presence. Center yourself. Take 3 big deep breaths before you begin.

Prepare yourself

Look it’s hard to be perfect but it’s much easier to be perfect at pitching if you come prepared to pitch.  That means paying attention to all the details and rehearsing what you want to say.

You want your audio-visual equipment installed and ready to run as soon as you start speaking, don’t stop halfway through and try and set it up – it kills your flow and gets the audience focused on your kit and not on your message.

If the audio-visual stuff dies suddenly, make sure you have a backup routine in place, (handouts can help) and shrug it off. You can curse the capricious laptop gods when the pitch is over.

Stay on message. Cut anything from your pitch that doesn’t help the audience relate to you or make a decision. The best pitches are short and sweet not long and rambling.

Relate to your audience

If you’re dealing with an international audience, make sure that you speak their language – in some places it’s a courgette and in others it’s a zucchini. Knowing which is which, will help you bond with the people you speak to.

Most of all – Have fun

If you follow all of these tips, your pitch will be rock solid. If you want it to be spectacular, however, you also need to have fun. Show your passion, excitement and personality and the audience will love you for it.

About Kelly Lavery

Kelly Lavery is a perpetual motion machine. When she is not assisting her husband in his chiropractic clinic or parenting three children, she is looking for ways to make life easier for others. When she had her third child many years after the first two, she was thrown back into a world of nappies and spit rugs. Faced with buckets of mess and messy kids, she thought there had to be a better way. So began the journey and evolution as a innovator and inventor. The Strucket was born – a combination of a bucket and strainer. Through Kelly’s tenacity and nous, the Strucket has been picked up big retailers, featured on TV and is becoming a household name.

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