Bad Pitch Bingo

Content
August 12, 2016

We’ve all sat through a pitch that made us want to go full Kanyeezy

“I’ma let you finish, but first I just wanna say, STOP TALKING AT ME”

As everyone in the room drifted off during a recent pitch, we had an idea – what are the cardinal mistakes people make when pitching?

Kanye West interrupts Taylor Swift at VMAs

The intro is all about you.

Research suggests that people make up their mind about whether you’re trustworthy, smart, successful and a whole host of other things within seconds of meeting you. If you can, take a minute, get to know everyone’s names, build the relationship and make note of any information that can help you tailor your pitch to them…

For god’s sake, don’t spend fifteen minutes going through your own C.V in detail.

Name dropping happens early and often.

Case studies are great; they’re a good source of social proof and give people a real world example of the results you’re capable of. Nice work. But just listing the names of previous clients is not a case study… it’s like mentioning an ex on a date. We don’t want to hear about it unless it helps us understand what you’ve learnt and how that will help us.

The scripting is obvious.

We know you’ve probably practiced your pitch a lot, and you may have delivered this pitch to a million customers before, but no one wants to hear someone giving them ‘the pitch’. If you’ve done your job in the introductions, you should have some information to tailor your message to us, tell us how your case studies and product will work for us. Don’t tell us what it can do in general… tell us what it can do for us.

There’s no energy

We’re not saying get jacked up on Red Bull before your pitch, but if you don’t care about what you’re talking about why should we?

Questions are asked, but not answered.

You’ve probably seen or heard this dialogue before:

“So does anyone have any questions?”

“Yeah, so you mentioned a cool feature; how does that work?”

“Um well, if you wait, I’m going to talk about that later.”

“Oh ok.”

Asking questions and then not answering them feels dismissive, pitchy and a little rude. A better approach is:

“So does anyone have any questions?”

“What about this cool feature?”

“Yep, here’s a simple answer, but I will go into that in more detail soon.”

“Thanks.”

People are more likely to like your product if they like you. So start with basic manners, be present, be attentive and enjoy talking to the people you’re pitching to. If you’re paying attention, chances are they will too.