Knowing how to successfully pitch an idea or new venture is a crucial skill in the business world. As an entrepreneur, you will be pitching to banks, your staff, business partners, venture capitalists, and other potential investors. So, it is very important that you brush up on your public speaking skills as often as you can so that you will be prepared for your next pitch. We have listed 5 tips below that will be sure to blow your audience away during your next pitch.
Practice, Practice, Practice
You have heard it thousands of times – practice makes perfect. Well, the same goes for your next pitch. Practice saying it over and over again. If you get nervous during public speaking, practicing your pitch repeatedly and memorizing it will help so that when your nerves are peaking, you will still continue on with your presentation. This is perhaps the most important tip that we have included in this list. What do you think Steve Jobs did before he gave one of his famous speeches? He practiced saying it over and over again, just like you should do before you give your next pitch.
Know your Audience
When we say “know your audience,” that doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to be acquaintances with everybody in the room. However, knowing some of the individuals could make you feel more comfortable while presenting. If you have time before your presentation, try to spend a little bit of it getting acquainted with some members of the audience.
Another important aspect is understanding who you are presenting to and tailoring your material for them. Now, if you have a business pitch about a specific product or service then you might not have the luxury of changing a lot of your material; in this case, just do the best with what you’ve got. The key point here is that you should try to avoid saying anything that could be deemed inappropriate or unrelated to your audience. For example, if you are pitching to a venture capital firm in China then you don’t need to talk about political issues from America because your audience most likely won’t relate to that topic.
Make Eye Contact
This tip should seem a bit more obvious, however, you will notice as you continue with your career that a lot of people actually struggle with this issue. Making eye contact is extremely important. It will make you appear more confident and assertive, and will help your audience to pay attention during your pitch. I mean who wants to listen to a speaker who just stares at the ground during their entire presentation? Always make eye contact.
Project your Voice
This one goes hand-in-hand with the previous tip. Nobody is going to listen to a speaker who is mumbling their sentences and looking down at the floor. You will never convince anybody to invest in your venture if you are guilty of these two common habits. When giving your pitch, speak loud enough so that everyone in the audience can hear your voice; and make sure you are pronouncing your words clearly and precisely. Again, always make eye contact – and always project your voice.
Have Fun with It
Giving a pitch doesn’t have to be perceived as a boring task. Next time, think of a funny story that you could add to your presentation. Just make sure that it is appropriate and related to your topic. You could also tell a funny joke, or even include some funny pictures to your PowerPoint slides; perhaps something ironic or exaggerated. Your audience will appreciate the humor and it will help keep their attention on your idea or venture. Life is short, laugh a little.
What do you think?
Is there any tactic you are using for your pitch?
We want to hear from you.