On an episode of Pitchmen Billy Mays said almost prophetically, “Life’s a pitch and then you die”.
Like it or not, a lot of success in life is related to sales. The word sales conjures up images of sleazy salespeople with questionable ethics and even worse personal grooming habits.
Think of it more as influencing someone or even just effectively communicating what you want to share.
Here are some tips to help you perfect your pitch whether it’s written or in person, these tips can help you be more effective.
First Impressions –Shark or Schlep
People make snap judgments in the first few seconds before you even open your mouth or before they read what’s printed. Don’t start in a hole. Put your best foot forward.
Appearance: don’t look like a shark. A slick suit with a red power tie but don’t look like a disheveled college student that just rolled out of bed either. If you see a document in courier font you think BORING even before you read the content. Make it look interesting and easy on the eyes.
Suspense is for mystery novels –You need to BLUF
BLUF is an acronym I learned from a former Green Beret, friend and mentor, Jimi Tunstall.
Bottom Line Up Front. Get to the point and don’t waste people’s time. Save the drama for your mama. People are busy and they will not pay attention as much as if when you tell them what you are going to tell them first and then fill in the details.
What radio station are you tuned to?
You need to be on the same wavelength as the person you are communicating with. The radio station is WIIFM. The person listening to your pitch is thinking, “What’s In It For Me”. You need to tell them how it will benefit them. Demonstrate how the idea will generate value. What are their hot buttons, what are their pain points, scratch their itch.
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