Are You Guilty Of Pitch Abuse?

I get it. We’re all busy building our businesses and on any given day, we’re checking off the boxes of any number of random activities to move us forward. Mixed into a typical day, there are even strategic calls, Skypes, and Zooms scheduled where you know you’re ready to absolutely nail a new deal. 

You are focused, you’ve completed your miracle morning mantras, squeezed in a good workout, and you’ve productively hustled your way to the big call! Nothing can stop you now (roll the 80’s anthem).

And then…it happens. You commit a crime that is so insidious, so commonly committed by others just like you that you don’t even know you’re doing it anymore…(cut the music).

You pitch TOO SOON! (See my last #hotPITCHtip on foreplay) …And you just spent an hour practically obliterating any chance of ever landing that particular deal again.

Your pitch, no matter how slick, tested, and proven as a conversion workhorse is nothing but a crime scene waiting to happen UNLESS you….

BUILD A RELATIONSHIP - FIRST. 

Let me say that again… TAKE THE TIME to BUILD A RELATIONSHIP - FIRST!

Look, the difference between a millionaire and a billionaire - the latter has MORE relationships - high quality, nurtured over and for the long term, mutually valuable relationships. (As an aside, the billionaire also does LESS overall, because s/he knows the power of relationship-leverage at every level!)

Remember, YOU ARE THE KEY and YOU effectively unlock the doorway of opportunity when you invest in building relationships. That means - talk less about yourself and your business, and ASK MORE questions about the person right in front of you. Authentic questions! Get to know the person - what do they love? What’s their story? Why are they doing what they do? Who matters to them? How are they moving forward? What are they struggling with? When are they taking their next vacation? Who do they want to be connected with (that you may be able to connect them to)?

I’m not saying that you need to get all this information before ever considering a pitch, however, I’m sure you can see how getting to know someone on a slightly deeper level than just ‘are we an ideal business match’ is a way to organically amplify your potential.

So, are you willing to step back from pitch-pouncing to allow for a little more space to build relationships (that convert)? Try it out. I’d love to hear your relationship building success stories!

Are You Making Time For Foreplay?

This tip is HOT HOT HOT :) The ‘Pitch’ is ONE COMPONENT of the bigger picture and in 99% of scenarios, you simply cannot pitch someone without…foreplay…ahem.

The pitch is the final step in the ‘sales conversation’ if you will and essentially takes everything you’ve gathered in the rest of the rapport building part of your interaction and brings it all together to sell and close.

Those of you who have been following my Tuesday Tips will really see how last week’s ‘You talk TOO MUCH’ tip becomes critical.

To effectively close a deal you need to spend a lot of time asking questions and listening - the foreplay component. Build rapport, determine suitability, uncover the problem or desire, help them to imagine possibilities, find out the options they may have…. etc.

THEN, once you’ve collected all the information you need and you’ve figured out if that person is an ideal match you go in for the pitch. 

Transition by saying something like, ‘based on everything we’ve talked about…’, ‘I’ve got a program/product/service that would support you and your audience’ — and then deliver your POP statement…problem-discovery-solution story…and the rest of the pitch (which you should keep to about 2 - 3 minutes - avoid going on too long).

It’s not often that we are in a situation to flat out pitch (Shark Tank style like on the PitchFest calls). Take time to figure out how to lead up to your pitch in a natural conversation where you ask questions and make the other person feel listened to and supported, and then you’ll land more of your partners, deals, and sales more of the time! …And you’ll enjoy yourself more, too ;)

THIS Is WHY You Are Not Converting

Today’s #HOTpitchTIP - How you’re losing deals, sales, and JV partners…(and the simple fix for higher conversion.)

You talk TOO MUCH! 

When you jam pack your pitch or sales conversation with too much talk, too many details, and my personal fave, too much about yourself, potential clients, investors, and partners RUN AWAY!

Less is more when it comes to your pitch. 

YES. You want to share enough to paint a clear picture of:

1. WHY you’re pitching, aimed directly (and in their language) at 

2. WHO you’re pitching

3. WHAT you’re pitching, and 

4. HOW it will result in a benefit (for them).

BALANCE and be aware of the amount you share in each area. 

The goal (part of the WHY) of your pitch is for you to CREATE space for intrigue and pursuit.

Think of it this way. 

Imagine if you open the door and throw someone inside to a situation they’d consider their worst nightmare… When you talk too much, that’s what you do.

Your pitch OPENS THE DOOR so that the person you are pitching gets a peek inside, maybe stands at the threshold, and feels invited and intrigued to step in further. 

So, instead of shoving MORE into your pitch, think about saying only what needs to be said to 

STIR the IMAGINATION, 

ACTIVATE some HOT BUTTONS, and 

INVITE PURSUIT.

Are you guilty of trying to say and talk too much?? At some point, we all are. I invite you to sit back and experiment with sharing a little less and watch how you’ll build authority and positive pursuit…and more partners and deals!

I'm Not Interested In Your Story

Despite the ever growing number of people telling you that you need to tell your story, what the vast majority of programs and coaches don’t tell you is that your story could, in fact, be losing you clients, partners, and sales!

If your story is included to elicit an emotional response OR if you include it to gain know-like-trust factor, then you’ve really missed the boat, and so will the people on the receiving end of your story.

Here’s the deal… Your story (or any number of your stories) will only matter if it is relevant and relatable in the given situation. IT MUST fit (organically or as pattern interruptor) to connect the dots from where your potential partner, client, or listener is at, to where you are - or where you want to take them.

In addition to relevant and relatable, especially when you're making a first impression, keep your story sincerely succinct. Save the longer version for interviews, your live events, and keynotes.

A story is an excellent tool to invite positive interest and pursuit - ONLY when you design it to be relevant, relatable, and to activate imagination and curiosity ;)

The Rule Of 3 And Why It Matters In Your Pitch

#HotTip Stick to the 'Rule of 3’ to land more sales, partners, and deals, and STAND OUT from the crowd!

You’ve created a pitch - whether it be to land an investor, partner, or to pitch your product/program/service - and you’ve shared a list of hot benefits that you absolutely know are attractive! In fact, you know that your offer is so hot, you’ve got 5 (or 7, or 4, or 10) things you simply know will push someone over the edge…. so you list them… and…. NOTHING HAPPENS!

HUGE ERROR ALERT!

It’s an age-old writer’s secret, and it applies to storytelling, comedy, and YES - even PITCHING! Things are more effective, more entertaining, and more likely to be remembered when they come in 3’s!

So, stick to 3 of the TOP, most RELEVANT, JUICIEST benefits or points whenever you’re listing things while you’re doing your pitch and you’ll get more response, more sales, and more partners!

I’d love to hear how you convert higher with this ONE simple tip!

IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU

W.I.I.F.M.

You’re already thinking it - ‘What’s in it for me’ as you begin to read this post. Take that as a huge indicator and guide when it comes to crafting your pitches of any kind.

What’s in this post for you? A HOTpitchTIP that will get you more sales, clients, and partners.

The more people I work with to develop their pitch, the more I see this as the most common, and most critical error.

YES, your story, your expertise, and your passion for your topic is absolutely important, HOWEVER, when it comes to pitching, nothing (NOTHING) is more important than reaching someone by identifying what’s in it for them - FAST!

When you are pitching yourself, a product, program, service, or partnership of any kind, get to the 'What's in it for them' factor - FAST! In fact, start off with a 'Statement of Seduction’ (big impact in the fewest, most concrete - jargon free - language) that is benefit rich, invites intrigue and pursuit, and reveals some aspect of the WIIFM factor.

Craft your pitch to be a consistent conversion machine!

THE Secret To Getting A YES!

Let me get right to it.

YOU ARE A CONVERSION MACHINE. In fact, NOTHING will convert higher. Not your copy, not your ads, not even your videos or carefully crafted pitches.

YOU are the key, and in a lot of cases, the missing link. 

When I work with people on their pitches, talks, and turning their events into world class experiences, the majority of my work revolves around uncovering your authentic message, essence, and the brilliance you have to offer the world.

And here’s the big catch. I always tell clients that the most effective thing they could possibly do in any of these situations (pitch, talk, event…) is to make a real personal connection, and to build an authentic relationship - at least to open the door to one.

It is in that moment (where you open the door to authentic connection) that YOU show up, and your conversion rates will soar! Combined with your personal clarity of what you have to offer, why and how… you are truly a conversion machine.

Try it out. Experiment, even. I’d love to hear about your experiences, and how you’ve been able to out-convert your copy with a simple personal conversation or phone call ;) 

The Why-What-How Of Pitching

After a lifetime of pitching and presenting all sorts of things in all sorts of situations, I’ve discovered that success (conversion, engagement, authority) is greatly increased when you address the following 3 big areas:

1. PHYSICAL - HOW you deliver

2. MENTAL - WHAT you say

3. CREATIVE - WHY they should take action

When you balance the physical and mental and spark imagination (accessing the creative realm), you will nail the sale, elevate your authority, and land MORE of the partnerships you want, MORE of the time.

So, take a look at your presentations and pitches…are you hitting the 3 areas? Effectively? Affectively? Succinctly? Dynamically?

Don’t get stuck like my African warthog friend ;) Always have someone coach you before your big moment so you don’t miss your one shot to make that first impression.

Every day, you are required to pitch ideas, yourself, a product or program - maybe it’s as simple as where it is you want to go to dinner, or what movie to watch, or maybe it’s a big money deal or strategic partnership…

After a lifetime of pitching all sorts of things in all sorts of situations, I’ve discovered that in any situation, a successful pitch addresses 3 big areas. When you nail all 3, you can consistently enroll, convert, land more of what you want. (Cool, right?)

What do you think are the essential areas to cover in a pitch? What would make you give a YES?