5 Ways To Successfully Pitch Ideas to Clients & Investors
It doesn’t matter if you have the most creative and innovative idea, product or design known to man, if your pitch stinks chances are your clients and or investors won’t give you the time of day. Don’t let a stellar idea go to waste. To learn how to successfully pitch your creative idea, following these easy tips listed below. I only really scratch the surface in this post, but there is so much to say. I summarized the posts for easy following.
1. Explain the Concept
First and foremost, you need to make sure that you can wrap up the premise of your idea in a nice, clear and concise “speech” to your clients. Your pitch should include how your idea can help resolve business problems or how it can help meet business goals. It should also include how it will ultimately bring customer satisfaction. Make sure to validate your claims by using concrete evidence and by specifically pointing out how the elements of your idea will help achieve these goals, including everything from design choice and color scheme.
To explain the concept of your idea, you may even want to address how you came up with the idea in the first place as an introduction. This will make it more personable and help your clients relate to you and your idea better. Just make sure to not drag the story out. Get to the point quickly.
2. Address Weaknesses and Answer “Why” Questions.
All too often clients are quick to point out all of the weakness of a person’s idea. That being said, it’s your job to find all the weaknesses beforehand and find a way to convince your clients that your weaknesses aren’t truly weaknesses at all. That’s not to say you should spin everything. You need to maintain some level of honesty regarding your idea. But pre-formulating answers to questions your clients might ask will make it seem as though you’ve got all of the groundwork covered and you are confident in your idea/product.
You also need to be prepared to answer really tough “why” questions. Some may include “why did you use that specific typeface?” or “why did you use that color?” The biggest mistake that you could do is say “because it’s my favorite” or “I like it.” This sort of answer leaves your client to retaliate with a “well, I don’t like it.” Instead, give a justifiable and non-emotional answer to all of the choices you make. For example, if you used a particular typeface you could argue that this typeface is known for being easy on the eyes. In addition to convincing your client that you know what you are talking about and can be trusted, this type of answer may also educate your client, who may otherwise just think of your idea on a superficial level.
3. Investigate Competition.
While you may think your idea is completely original, it may very well not be. And that’s ok. But don’t let your clients blindside you during your pitch if/when they call you out on the similarities your idea/product has with another company. Instead use the similarities of a competitor to your advantage. Meaning, know your competition and openly acknowledge how successful the other product or design, for example, already is. Emphasize how gathering inspiration from the already well-received idea will rest well with the public; just make sure to simultaneously weave-in how your idea is even better than your competition. By doing so, this will convince your clients that you’ve done your homework and will give you a sense of credibility.
4. Rehearse Your Pitch.
Whatever you do, you never want to wing your pitch. Rehearsing is key. Write down everything that you want on a piece of paper or some note cards and rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. While talking to yourself in the bathroom mirror will suffice, it’s usually best to practice in front of a live audience. See if you can get a friend or family member who is willing to hear your pitch. He or she should be able to give you an honest opinion about how you sound and whether you make a strong case or not.
5. Investigate Rejection.
If your idea gets rejected, don’t just immediately quit and toss it in the trash. Instead, try to see if you can discover an unspoken reason why your clients may not be too keen on your idea in the first place and consider taking the idea to new investors or clients. For example, when James Dyson first came up with the idea of inventing a bag less vacuum cleaner in the late 1970s, many of his clients rejected his idea. It wasn’t that his idea seemed impractical, but many where reluctant to go through with the idea because vacuum bags were a huge industry back then—they provided tons of revenue into the markets and provided employment opportunities for sales people. But Dyson refused to take no for an answer and took his idea to several other clients until someone finally gave him a chance.
If you constantly get rejected from an array of different clients, then maybe it’s time you step back, put your ego to the side, and evaluate all of your feedback. Maybe you do in fact need to make some changes to your idea. Good luck.
Guest Post by: Lauren Bailey, who regulary writes for best online schools. She welcomes your comments at her email ID: firstname.lastname@example.org