7 Ways To Nail A Pitch
Sales is a dirty word for many. This really frustrates me as it shouldn't be because no matter what you do- you are selling. Be it selling an idea to your boss, bank manager or customer, we're all selling something daily. I personally enjoy the pursuit of the sale, even the smallest wins feel like successes and need to be celebrated. If you nail the art of selling you are king of the world. Here are my top tips to nail that pitch this week:
1. Set Your Objectives
What the fuck do I need to do here? Many of us get straight into pulling the presentation slides together. Preparation means really taking the time to consider what your objectives are, what do you want to achieve in the meeting and know if you're going to do well or not. It may be as simple as getting another meeting or to sell a concept for €100k, either way preparation is key.
2. The Stalk
Also known as building rapport. This isn't a cliche- people like people that are like themselves. LinkedIn is a treasure throve for this. Find out about the person you're about to meet, what they like and who they know. It's easier to build rapport if you both love mountain biking and have some common links. Talk about the weather on the walk from the reception to the board room.
3. Role Play
This is were you need an honest co-worker to really test you out and throw all sorts of questions at you that you hadn't even considered. It is a painful thing to put yourself through but it is worth going through the pain in a safe environment rather than losing that €100k contract. If you prefer to fly solo film your pitch and you will quickly see where it is slick and where it needs work.
4. Reasons To Say Yes
Set up your hooks. What are the reasons to buy from me? What might be the reasons not to? List out 10 reasons to say yes and 5 reasons to say no. These will be the frame work of your pitch. If you think price is a reason to say no- be prepared for that. Can you take it off the table? Is that the only reason you won't buy? If I can do something on price will you buy? Ask yourself all these questions in preparation.
5. Tell A Story
Don't give a boring sales pitch- the art of presenting is the art of story telling (Niall Harbison does this very well). Link your presentation to your own stories or other client experiences that your prospective client can relate to. Build your presentation around images not words.
6. Show Passion
People can tell if someone is truly excited about what they're selling. You must believe in the product or service and be its number 1 fan. Showing your true passion through excitement and understanding of how it works is key. There is no point in selling that piece of software or killer app if you aren't a believer in what it does. Know your product's weaknesses and be ready to dismiss them as reasons not to buy.
Glengarry Glenross is a must watch for everyone selling. Always be closing, ask for the sale. At the very least, clarify the next steps and follow through on them as promised.