If tomorrow, you meet Bill Gates in the elevator or get a call from Warren Buffet asking you to pitch your business, will you know what to say?
In business, there’s nothing as sweet and as magical as when you have the opportunity to present your business to someone and you’re able to describe what you do with so much clarity that causes the other party to take action.
I don’t know about you but when I first started Onpoint Success, I had trouble explaining how exactly I could help small business owners succeed. I knew what I was doing. However, finding the right words that will make others take action was so difficult. It got to a stage whereby when people ask me “so what is Onpoint Success all about?”, I just respond by saying, “you won’t understand” or I look for other ways to end the conversation as quickly as possible. Then a few months later, I enrolled in a training themed “Effective Presentations” in which I learned about the art of pitching. Since then, I have committed myself to learn how to perfect my pitching skills.
As a business owner who wants to build a profitable brand, you must commit to continuous improvement and one of such improvement is being able to capture the attention of your audience at any given time. You don’t know when opportunity will come knocking so you have to be prepared. I remember in 2016 during a conference I attended with some top sale experts, I earned a standing ovation for the best pitch/introduction. We were asked to introduce ourselves, our business and what we do and through that opportunity landed a deal to train employees at an organization.
That leads me to the question, if you meet Bill Gates in an elevator or you get a call from Warren Buffet asking you what your business is all about, will you be able to describe with clarity while also using the keywords that will allow them to gain deep insights as to what you do?
As a small business owner, one of the ways you can prepare yourself ahead of opportunities and building a profitable brand is by being able to communicate what your business is about with clarity to other people.
How do you introduce yourself to others when they ask you “what do you do?” or when they say “tell me more about your business”? Do you just introduce yourself randomly without coherence or are you being intentional about it? Do your pitch make you stand out?
Let me work you through the steps.
First, there are majorly two types of pitches namely short-form and long -form. Short-forms are pitches that are usually 2 minutes or less while long forms are greater than 2 minutes. Whether you are developing short-form or long-form, the most important thing is for you to include pertinent details that will strike a chord in the person you are pitching to.
When you develop your pitch, include your name, the name of your business and describe what your business does.
When I teach my clients how to describe their business to others, I recommend taking the following steps:
For short-form pitch:
a. State your name and the name of your business
b. State your target audience
c. State the need you identified in your target audience and how your business will solve the pain they currently experience
d. State the SPECIFIC benefit(s) your target audience will gain as a result of doing business with you.
*Please note I highlighted the word SPECIFIC. The more specific you are, the higher the chances of getting a callback, an appointment, and the deal.
A type of a short form pitch is an elevator pitch which is usually pegged at 30 seconds. In 30 seconds, you must clearly state the pertinent details of your business.
For long-form pitches, you include everything in your short-form pitch and then delve into more details about the following:
a. why you started the business (you need to support this with concrete facts if you are pitching to investors or potential partners
b. state how you are different from the competition
c. describe the channels through you make money or intend to make money from the business
d. describe how you communicate or will communicate with your target audience
e. share your summarized financial projections or how you intend to become profitable
Lastly, don’t forget an opportunity most times don’t give advance notice of when, where, and how. It can meet you at the mall, in the cafeteria, on a plane or even while using an ATM machine. It can come at any time of the day and the least you can do is to be prepared. Also, remember to bring your business cards with you everywhere you go because sometimes all you have to connect with someone is 5 seconds. And in such cases, your business cards though small can be the difference between barely surviving and greatly thriving.
Thanks for reading! Did you learn anything from reading this article? What other ways can one develop or prepare a pitch? Leave a comment below and remember to share this post with a friend.