Ready, Set, 60-second pitch!
There are two ways that you can think about “pitching”:
- The most terrifying 60-seconds of your life
- The greatest opportunity to share your business
When looking at these thought-frameworks, option two is the preferred choice. So why do most people think of it like option one?
To answer this question, I’m going to ask you to think back to high school. Now, when you started high school, you were just you. For many of us, by the second or third year of high school, we had been given a label (Thankfully, this is not as present as it once was but there’s still a lot of work to do here!). In some instances, we may have allowed these labels to define us and in other cases, we rose above the idea of ‘labels’ and chose to define ourselves.
Looking at the instances in which we may have let a label define us, we can begin so see an “if-then” thought framework:
- If I’m athletic, then I’m not an A-student
- If I’m an A-student, then I don’t like to go to parties
- If I’m popular, then I must look perfect every day
- If ___________, then _______________ (I’m sure you can fill in many many more blanks).
Thankfully today, the above “if then” scenarios are starting to break down – although there’s still a lot of work to be done by all of us in this space.
So how does all this connect to 60-second pitches?
“Pitch” is just a label for the way you explain who you are and what you do. If we’re going to make our own “if-then” scenario for pitching, it might look a little bit like this:
- If I’m told to pitch, then I must be perfect and say exactly the right thing.
- If someone asks me about my business at a bar or networking event, then I should casually tell them about it and seek their advice or feedback
You see where I’m going with this? Both options above are the exact same action, just called something different!
Anxiety comes with labels; that’s a tried and true hypothesis that we’ve all likely encountered.
So what should we think about when we’re asked to, “pitch”, our ideas? Try these:
- Share your excitement about your business
- Provide an overview. You can share all the details afterward
- Let your online presence give people the long description. When you’re pitching, be genuine! People invest in people, so let them get to know you through your pitch.
If you have any questions or want to practice your pitch, just ask or post a video/audio file and we can even crowdsource pitch feedback!
For other pitch practice opportunities, try presenting at a 1 Million Cups event powered by the Kauffman Foundation. There’s probably one happening in your area!