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28 Pitching Essentials

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If you are like many people, even the thought of delivering a speech in front of an audience will get your palms sweating. The fear of public speaking ranks high among the most common phobias, and for good reason: most of us approach the situation with the wrong mindset, which in turn makes us live out our worst fears in a public forum.

As Michael Parker notes in IT’S NOT WHAT YOU SAY: How to Sell Your Message When It Matters Most (A TarcherPerigee paperback; on sale January 2016), our fixation on the content of our words – and not the presentation of ourselves – is what brings us down. Once the Vice-Chairman of London’s Saatchi & Saatchi, and one of the world’s most experienced advertising pitch men, having made more than 1,000 pitches in his successful career, Parker has learned first-hand that an effective presentation, a job interview, or even a speech at a wedding hinges on our ability to portray ourselves as passionate, relatable, and collected. But, if we are focused on what we say, and not how we act, we will fail to persuade our audience.

Applied in the boardroom, at the pulpit, or even in conversation, these tenets will help you present better in any situation.

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28 Pitching Essentials

  2. IT’S NOT WHAT YOU SAY, |T’S THE WAY YOU SAY IT Over 65% communication impact is non verbal
  3. IF THEY | l0N’T LIKE YOU THEY W| JN’T Bl| Y Yllll To sell anything, you must first sell yourself $
  4. PEIIPLE ACT [IN EMIITIIIN THEN JIISTIEY WITH BEASIIN ‘People will never forget how you made them feel’ MAYA ANGELOU
  5. PASSION PIIHSOAOES Don’t fake it. If you don’t have it, settle for enthusiasm 9
  6. (16th century proverb). Whoever is the hungriest, wins
  7. Your proposal was bulletproof. Your interview was flawless. Your speech was profound.
  8. Every pitch is a battle. The winning difference is leadership ‘</ ’ / (,I‘{' ' §HA{ I R‘ % 1”‘ E $1?“ ‘IE6’ . ~ . S‘ if ’ ‘ um . l y A V; .. ‘ , at 01’-/ /(I f A
  9. MAKE THE AIIOIENOE YOIIII EIIIENO Not your enemy. They’re there because they want to be there
  10. POT YOIIIISELE IN THEIII SHOES Why are they here? What do they want? What’s in it for them?
  11. IF YOU WANT TO BE HEARO LISTEN People listen to you if you listen to them ‘ mu DRAM rursr wanns mm MY EARS AEAINST ’ THE smn/ IA an or MY snvsr. WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
  12. A Your ‘elevator pitch’ must capture hearts not just the minds ‘I I A I‘
  13. OMNIOM TRIIIM PEREEOTLIM. THE OSEFIIL ROLE OF THREE Ideal number of supporting themes. Long lists lose the audience
  14. TO COME FIRST, OON’T AOT LAST MINUTE 1%. The commonest error E -
  15. ENERGY. THE PREMIUM FUEL. TOP UP IN THE MORNING Energy is infectious and morning energy is best x: .9§>~: _m, vnr I ellenins
  16. AL ARE ON GOOD IF HAUEA OIOEA Only use them if they make for better communication ; :— A ARE
  17. FAIL TO REHEARSE, FAIL TO PREPARE Find someone neutral to tell you how you come across
  18. A WINNING START MEANS A WINNING FINISH Beware, audience will make minds up in first few minutes
  19. TII INSPIRE IITHERS YOU NEED TI] BE INSPIREIJ ‘One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world’ MALALA
  20. ‘ L ,1_I__ ‘RV IV-L: _ gnu II_I| II, I,| II, I,l3'l 1% 1}: pxn1vIv1=nii ul an an _, -mu-LI at-ws
  21. clearwell-reasoned argument ’’‘~ ‘ 44--. -- Trigger an ’ emotional response
  22. THE LIINEER YIIII G0 IIN, THE LESS THE IMPACT The Gettysburg Address lasted less than 3 minutes . . “ M ' M g 20 MINS EN» 59eac. H orsvsecn
  23. GIVE THEM SOMETHING TO REMEMBER YIIII BY Story, phrase, theatre, setting, visual, participation, an idea! Remember
  24. PITBHES HAPPEN IN THE PAIISES Pause for emphasis, for confidence, for audience to catch up
  25. g? 1.Break speech into chunks 2.Conquer the opening 3.Memorise key words o . 4.Rehearse to someone ' 5.Practice the pauses sPem<mc+, ? IN PUBLIC?
  26. And if the charts don’t add something, chuck them
  27. LOOK AT YOUR AIIOIENOE, AS THEY LOOK AT YOO Looking down to read loses eye contact (and audience! ) R [A DING IS BAD
  28. BEOOME A POSEOR- YOO KNOW YOO’VE ALWAYS ANTEO TO Try wer posing! Amy cuddy TED Talk ‘Fa ' till you become it’
  29. JOST ONE LAST THINO. BE YOORSELF. BOT BETTER spontaneity and confidence grow through rehearsal
  30. /1 / wxzw/ //W/ J /7xa. W// W 77;; z/ /’/ /// ,/ l:§‘/ /I/ // I/I/ /J/ V 531/ BUY THE BOOK A creatively illustrated guide to selling your ideas, and yourself, by one of the top advertising pitchmen in the world. Michael Parker is the former vice chairman of Saatchi & Saatchi London. AVAILABLE AT BOOK STORES OR CLICK ON PENGUINRANDOMHOUSE