Entrepreneurs often have great ideas but find it challenging to pitch this idea to potential partners or investors. No matter how brilliant your idea is, you will need partners and people to believe in your idea. You might even need to pitch your idea to your team as often as possible. You may need to convince others to help you with the resources you need. This is when you need to pitch your idea. No matter to who. Be it your uncle, your mum or an investor. Some might ask you to send a full document, like a business plan. This article will cover the principal elements and structure for a great pitch. Since none of the investors or partners knows your vision, your duty as an entrepreneur is to sell this vision to them.
You must have heard about the famous elevator pitch. Even when it might not happen in an elevator, the idea is to prepare your pitch for different formats. You might meet someone with 10 minutes to listen to you or another person with only 3 minutes. In this article, we will lay out the strategic template to guide you through pitching your idea for any format. Remember, your pitch is the story of your idea or your project.
Here are the key elements to structure your pitch:
- Grand opening
- Your WHY
- The WHAT
- Your team.
- Call to action
With these nine elements, you should be able to pitch any format. Depending on your time, you can extend or reduce each of these elements. Now let’s examine each of these elements.
Grand opening to pitch your idea
As the name goes, this is the first thing you must include when selling your idea to a partner or investor. If the person does not know you, start by introducing yourself. This should not be more than a sentence. No detailed biography is needed here. Move on to add a tagline. This is the line or statement that would capture your audience. If you are experienced, you can start with this tagline before introducing yourself. However you choose, make sure the tagline says it all. In a movie, the tagline is like the logline. That one statement that draws viewers to watch the movie. Your opening can be a question, an assumption, a fact, a statement, a mission or a simple hypothesis. Craft the perfect tagline for your pitch and rehearse it in many possible ways. You can be creative here to find intriguing ways to present this tagline.
After you have captured your audience, it is time to tell them why. The WHY is the main issue your idea is needed. It is like summarising the problem and how your idea or project is the right fit to solve it. Use a story to evoke emotions. Let the audience feel the pain point and who it affects. Use figures and statistics. Make it a pressing problem. A carefully crafted three sentences can cover this section. If you find it challenging to know your WHY, Check our WHY Template to learn more.
This is the section where you focus solely on the solution your idea brings. If it is a tangible product, you should be ready to talk about this product. Show this product in action if you can. Let the solution you propose here be able to solve the issue you just presented earlier.
What makes your idea more unique than those solving the same or similar problem? You see, it is essential to have done your homework by researching what solutions are already out there. This is where you tell the investor or potential partner you know what you are talking about. Communicate all special attributes of your idea. If it is cheaper, more durable, more sustainable, brings added value, and so on. Find creative ways to let the audience know this. You might hear this section labelled the USP in many business tutorials, meaning Unique Selling Proposition. It all boils down to the fact that you have something special and must communicate it.
All said and done; the audience wants to know if you have thought things through. Have you created a plan, like a business plan or a roadmap, to achieve this idea you intend to start? We have a few blogs on how to create a business plan or the structure of a business plan. We also have a template for developing a Roadmap or a Blueprint. All these tools can help you crafts this section correctly. This is where the audience is interested in your business or idea model. How do you intend to make revenue or earn an income with this idea? If your idea is charitable, you will still need to think about how to generate revenues because you need revenue to launch, develop and grow the idea, don’t you?
Every investor or potential partner wants to know how you are invested in the idea you pitch. If you want their investment, you must have invested something tangible. This is where you let them know the status quo for your idea. What stage are you at? It is impossible to say you have done nothing. You might have made a prototype, researched, and even started or registered your company. What have you achieved? Maybe you have won some awards relating to the idea or already have a team set up. The best-case scenario is when you can show that there is proof of concept. A proof of concept is when the target audience has purchased or used your solution and is happy doing so. How under this section, the audience wants to know what the actual potential of this project or idea is. Is it possible to scale this idea, say, offer it to a larger audience as the initial audience? Share the vision because it will increase your chances of getting support.
Introduce your team.
This is the easiest part because if it is just you in your team, tell the audience why you are the best fit to execute this idea. If you have managed to set up a team, let the audience know what the strengths of this team are and why they are the best fit. Because, remembers, not everyone who has an idea must be the one to execute it.
Call to action
You do not want to pitch and forget why you are pitching in the first place. What is it that you need for the audience you are pitching to? Is it finance? Tell them and explain the impact it would have if you got it. Is it services like maybe distribution? Alsospeak it out clearly and state the value it will bring to them. Every investor or partner wants to know what they get from any support they render.
After all is said and done, you must employ storytelling tactics to make the audience remember everything you have pitched. It is time to wrap up everything as short as possible smartly. Remember the story you told maybe during the WHY section; you can refer to that now. By referring to something previously mentioned in your pitch, you get to remind the audience about all that has been said. You can also manipulate the tagline to serve this purpose. It is basically to close the circle by returning to where you started. Thank your audience.
Some Quick Tips To Help You Pitch Your Idea
- When speaking, pause for dramatic effect.
- Look to the person you communicate with.
- Use action words and intentional words. Effective and powerful. For example, “we are aiming to create” can be best communicated as direct as possible – “we create”.
- Draft, edit and rehearse your full pitch before you present it.
- Practice different versions of your pitch – 3 minutes, 30 seconds and 10 seconds.
- When presenting, remember to smile occasionally, stand on your feet and leave your hands naturally.
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