You just left college, your job or another empty place to work on your “Big Idea”? Now, after a few weeks of hard work, you developed an idea and all that’s missing is the initial cash to get you going? Congratulations – you are about to find out if your idea has what it takes! You know how important this is, so you started to prepare and Google searched “how to pitch an investor”? You lucky man! You found the one blog post that could actually prepare you for what is to come. So lace up your shoes and tuck in your shirt – it’s time to get in front of someone and deliver a pitch.
Your pitch is the single thing that could ether get your business off the ground or plunge your idea into eternal oblivion. It matters. So if you are the front man, the guy who has to take the Big Idea on the road and pitch it, you need to know exactly how to introduce yourself and the Big Idea. What’s important here is not your mastery over the details but your mastery over attention and time. Grab the audience’s attention from the start and don’t lose it until the end.
To consider this, just follow these 3 steps to boost your pitch to the next level. – When we’re done you’ll know exactly how to make investors begging to invest in your company.
Begin the pitch starting with your track record of success. Not a long rundown of all the places you worked. Not all the projects you were tangentially involved with. Not your whole life story. The key to success here is making it about your track record. Things you built. Projects that actually worked out. Real Successes.
There are two options: Either you have work experience relevant to your Big Idea, or not. If you have relevant work experience: Tell the story of why you bring the deep industry insights needed to become the revolutionary.
Should you not have any directly related experience, that’s fine too. Here, you make the case (with examples!) of why you are a person that can make ideas into successful projects and you have the brains to apply this to the new category that you are trying to kill.
Spend less than two minutes on it and definitely not more. Stop with one great thing. Get your track record on the table, and do it fast, clean, and problem-free. And don’t worry, before your pitch is over, the target is going to know a whole lot more about you.
How you do it:
Nobody wants to invest time or money into an old deal that has been sitting around. This is why you need a “Why now?”. It’s vitally important that the target knows that your idea is new, emerging from current market opportunities and that it’s not some relic left over from bygone days. The Target needs to know that you are pitching a new idea that came to life from a pattern of forces that your recognized, seized, and are now taking advantage of. And the target needs to know that you have more knowledge about these things than anyone else.
How you do it: Three-Market-Forces
When you describe your idea, project, or product, first give it context by using three key market forces or trending patterns that you believe are important.
Describe the genesis of your idea, how it evolved, and the opportunity you saw as it was emerging. The backstory of the idea is always interesting to the target. Once this story is told, everything you say in your pitch will be legitimized by it. By starting your pitch with the three market forces, your idea now enjoys a prominence that it did not have before.
Now your idea has a history, and exciting evolutionary path to present time, and credibility. With three market forces coming into alignment, you are literally showing the mind’s eye how the market is moving to benefit your Big Idea.
This does not take 15 minutes. It takes 1 minute. You don’t have to explain the Big Idea in great detail. Oh, I know you want to. But it’s not the time for details! Your target does not want to deal yet. The details can come later. (Of course – you should know your stuff! If there are questions, you should be able to answer them). First, you will establish the Big Idea using an idea introduction pattern which looks like this:
The idea introduction pattern breaks the idea down to the essential basics: Here’s what it is; here’s who it’s for; and here’s who I compete with. No anxiety, no fear, no drama.
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