What is the client trying to achieve by asking you to tell him about your company and services in less than a minute? Well, that is pitching, and this is an important part of any growing business. On short, a pitch is a presentation of who you are, what you do, and why you are suited for a particular task.
As an agency, we are constantly confronted with this situation, but the question - what makes a pitch successful, came up only after we “delivered” our last pitch.
If you are wondering why a pitch is so important for your business here are some reasons for you:
- It is your chance to convince your potential clients to believe in your company, services, and products;
- In a world with so many options, unless you are able to effectively and quickly communicate about yourself & your company, your message won’t get through, and you won’t be considered as an acceptable option;
- A pitch is a process. Knowing your business and capabilities provides you an opportunity of taking advantage of your competitors’ weaknesses, and thus improve your business.
According to Michael Hyatt, there are 4 key elements your pitch should contain:
- Your product name and category;
- The problem you are trying to solve;
- Your solution for that problem;
- The benefits of your proposal.
Whatever you do, your pitch needs to carry your message in a clear and compelling way. As well, don’t forget that your business success depends on your ability to bring in more clients which ultimately means more money.
If you want to find out our tips for a successful pitch, just keep on reading.
Don’t be mechanical - your audience is human.
The people you are pitching to, are looking to make the best decision for their business. They may, or may not have an idea of what they are looking for, but in the end, they want to be sure that their future business partner is capable of understanding their needs, their business and providing suitable solutions for their issues.
Update your presentation skills.
Though, your content and plan are very important, don’t forget that the way you’ll deliver them, makes the difference between a successful and failure pitch. No, it doesn’t mean you’ll have to take a new course, it only means that you have to be confident, relaxed and able to deal with questions, all these in a pleasant and enjoyable way for everybody present. If you want to improve your presentation skills remember that: practice makes perfect!
Adjust to your surroundings.
Learn your lesson well, but be prepared to improvise as you go. Every pitch is different, and you need to be able to change your speech, even your idea, on the spot. See if people are getting bored or they are paying attention. Look for cues to help you shape your speech and get desired results. This will also prove your flexibility and your ability to bring something new, according to your clients’ needs, no matter of the changes that may appear.
Make a plan, create a strategy, and know exactly what you want to transmit.
It is crucial to have everything well prepared before sustaining your pitch. The last thing you’ll want is to find yourself digress from the subject or stumble. Organizing your thoughts is a key element for any successful pitch. Interacting with some new can be nerve-racking, thus by having everything done eases the anxiety.
Show them what you can do before the pitch.
Most likely your potential partner will search your company, qualifications, and previous projects before the pitch. So, make sure that everything you have: website, social media channels etc. tells the story of your company the way you want. Ask yourself what is the message you want to transmit, what is the image you want to project and what you want people to know at first hand. Make sure you have a value sentence that combines your expertise, your qualification and what problems you’re able to solve on each of your social media channels. If you have an incredible company with an outstanding service or product, your online presence needs to represent that in a precise and correct manner. By not doing so, you may jeopardize the end result of your pitch.
Learn about your client.
The biggest mistake you can do is forgetting that a pitch is not about your company but about your client. A pitch is a dialogue, not a monolog. Hence, try to speak about yourself only in relation with your client. Ask him questions and listen to their perspective.
Additional tips to consider:
- Try to establish a connection with your client as soon as possible. Your opening will set the tone and mood for the entire conversation;
- When a presentation is over it, doesn’t mean your job has ended. Put in place a follow-up plan to enhance your customer skills;
- Wendy Weiss, author and sales coach, considers that a successful sales person “should talk 20% of the time and listen the other 80% “;
- Explain to your client how your service will help him reduce costs, time and increase profit by identifying issues and addressing the right solutions;
- Make sure you keep your promise!
Seek professional help
How an agency like us comes in handy in this kind of situations? Well, we are here to help our clients prep all the necessary elements before they sustain their pitch. You mustn’t forget that, in business as in life, first impression matters. We are likely to choose someone that we think are great at what they are doing, a company with whom we can relate to and feel has the capability of understanding us. So, by properly developing and implementing your online strategy and presence, creating a website that tells your story we ensure that your clients and business partners know who you are, even before you tell them.
Your business card is another element that can count. Unlikely? Let’s think it this way: anything you’re doing in online is rather impersonal. The actual contact starts with a handshake and a business card swap. You should consider paying more attention to this material, as it is cost-effective and a very important marketing tool. A notable business card can do much more than you think, it associates you with your brand’s image, and it can also be a good starting point of conversation. That is if your business card is truly impressive! Try to avoid having a poorly design card that is produced on a low-quality paper.
What are the next components of any successful pitch? Of course, your presentation and printed materials! Make sure that you put some thought in how to make your presentation stand out. It is the most accessible way to present your ideas in a visual and creative way. Any additional material tells something about your care for detail, and about the way you generally represent your company, and thus the way you’ll be able to represent your client. We are here to help you put together the best presentation and additional materials so you can impress everyone.
Believe it or not, all these elements are very important in the eyes of your possible clients. More so in a business to business relationship.
In the end, a successful pitch means proving that you, and your company, are a client’s best option.
Don’t forget we’re just an email away if you want our assistance!
Until next time,