If you’ve got a business idea or are currently running a business, then you need to know how to pitch. From clearly expressing what you do at networking events to convincing investors your concept is worth funding, pitching is an essential skill to master as an entrepreneur. So let’s dive into the “12 Pitch Tips from the Perfect Business Pitch” from American Express.
What is a business pitch?
First things first, what the heck is a business pitch anyway? Typically a business pitch is a presentation of the problem, solution, target market and financial projections for a business idea to investors in order to convince them to fund your company.
Why do you need a business pitch?
The main purpose of a business pitch is to clearly and convincingly convey your business idea to another party. That could be customers, colleagues or investors.
12 Pitch Tips
Now for the good stuff! Here’s the 12 Best Pitch Tips to Make a Business Pitch according to American Express.
Get to the point fast.
You’ve got to grab people’s attention and you don’t have long to do so. Be sure to provide a concise and compelling proposition right out of the gate.
Create a winning pitch deck.
You need to give your audience the crucial information they need, but shorter is better when it comes to pitch decks. And don’t reinvent the wheel, there are templates all over the internet!
Establish the need.
All great businesses solve a problem and it’s your job when pitching to clearly illustrate the problem your idea solves. You can do this through sharing data, customer discovery feedback and examples. And be sure to express your solution to this problem.
Use a message map.
You must be able to share what you do in 15 seconds! You can use the idea of a message map (created by author Carmine Gallo) to do so. Start with a headline, followed by three key supporting benefits and end with data and stories to back up your claims.
Use a multilevel structure to your pitch.
Successful pitches start with crafting your 5 second version, a single sentence explaining your idea. Next you create your 30 second version, giving the audience a bit more interesting detail. Once you’ve nailed those two versions, build your 5 minute pitch. This strategy encourages you to be concise and persuasive.
State who your competition is.
Every business has competition. And you need to share who your competitors are and how you’re different when pitching. Without the audience knowing your competitive advantage your idea will fall into the “been there done that” bucket.
Include a sound bite.
Yes you need data and examples to convince your audience of your viability and ability to lead the venture, but you also need something catchy that sticks. Enter the sound bite. A short, catchy phrase that helps listeners remember the value of your idea.
Introduce the team.
Teamwork makes the dreamwork. And your audience wants to know you have a strong team behind you to turn this idea into a profitable endeavor. So share some relevant information on why your team is the one to make it happen.
Take “yes” for an answer.
Know when to stop selling your idea. Resist the urge to continue talking past the point when your idea has already landed. You don’t want to undo your convincing presentation.
Know your next step.
It’s not only important to practice your pitch, but you also need to practice your follow-up steps. Know what you’ll do if you get a positive response. Know what you want the audience to do.
Learn from others.
Figure out the goal of your pitch and seek out examples of others who’ve successfully pitched for that same reason. Study their pitches, break down the components you found most compelling, borrow ideas and learn from those before you.
Present with confidence in spite of the normal anxiety you will feel and avoid begging.
Prepare to pitch
When you’re getting ready to pitch, leverage all the work you’ve already done exploring the viability of your idea and use that to create a stellar presentation. Refer to your Business Model Canvas, as it will lay out much of what you need to include and then follow the 12 tips above.
Open Mic Pitch Night
Looking for an opportunity to practice pitching? Don’t miss our upcoming Open Mic Pitch Night! This casual networking style event allows you to pitch for practice, fun or to just share your idea in an informal setting of supportive community members.
This event isn’t just for those that pitch, but also for those that want to listen or learn. Be part of the voting audience to hear what community members are up to, provide valuable feedback to those that pitch and gain access to opportunities to team up to pursue entrepreneurial ideas.
As always if you need individual support to hone your pitch, figure out business idea viability and more, we’re here! Simply book a FREE Business Coaching session.