How to Craft a Brief, Powerful Pitch

4 Simple steps

Bing* goes the bell. The elevator door closes. You have roughly 30 seconds to pitch your project. What do you do?

Here’s a simple answer:

  1. The Problem
  2. How People Solve it Today
  3. Your Solution
  4. Its Benefits
  5. Call to Action (investment, apply, sign up, etc)

For example:

“1) Through user research, my team has found that people want to give more to charity than they do, what stops people from being more generous is not trusting that charitable organizations use the money efficiently. 2) Some people do research to try to find the best charities or find charities certified by things like Charity Navigator, but this takes a lot of work and most people just end up not giving. 3) Our solution is to create a foundation that verifies and bundles charities into baskets, like an index fund, and enables people to donate to these charity indexes. 4) It increases people trust, saves them the time of doing all that research on their own, and enables them to be generous and help solve the issues they care about.” — the pitch for my non-profit foundation givewithfig.org

This four step process is a powerful way to do a pitch for a few key reasons.

Doesn’t Start with the Solution

Most people make the mistake of leaping right to their solution. This is a huge mistake because people don’t know what you are talking about and get confused. Also when people come on strong, we all tend to get doubtful and start faultfinding.

Starting with the Problem Grounds Your Audience

Instead, when you start with your problem, people become clear about what you are talking about and become curious and open. Remember that you think about your project all the time, but the person you are pitching has literally no idea what you are talking about at first.

Listing Current Solutions Builds Credibility

Why should your audience trust you? If you are just some person with an idea, they will be skeptical. Making a good laundry list of the present solutions to the problem builds a ton of credibility with your audience and further opens them for when you do share with them your novel solution.

End with Benefits, Not Features

A benefit is not a feature. I’m going to say that again

“A benefit is not a feature”

A feature is that you have integrated customer service chat bot. A benefit is our software is easy to use and provides instantaneous support. A feature is that you are a cross-platform application with a native iPad app. A benefit is your software can be used anywhere from phone, to tablet, to desktop.

Common benefits are saving time or money, helping customers meet their goals, being easy to adopt or implement.

Educator, Founder, Engineer. Interested in Evidence Based Education and Solving BIG Problems.