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The Art of Pitching: Introductions

You have your speech rehearsed, your presentation slides prepared and your deck ready, but will your business pitch really guarantee you get that investment? There are too many businesses competing for too little time from investors. Here’s one thing you can do to guarantee you have their attention: hook them fast. It takes merely seconds for an investor to decide whether to listen to you – the next on a long list of entrepreneurs – or return to checking his email.

Introductions are key.

Investors have listened to countless stories and presentations for entrepreneurs trying to raise money, which makes it fairly easy to zone out when they all sound the same. So what do you do? Utilize the beginning. Attract attention through a brief introduction. By creating a short starter, you’ll ensure that you’ll not only prevent the speech from becoming monotonous, but you’ll also get to the point, which is precisely the target of your whole pitch.

What to include?

  •  Present who you are in less than 5 words

  •  What problem are you solving?

  •  How will your product solve this problem?

All in all, this introduction should be no more than 20 words. Think it’s too simple? That’s the point. An introduction is the beginning of a conversation, not the end. It’s not about selling something or about asking for something from the investor. The purpose of such a short starter is to arouse interest, allow space for asking questions and engage in dialogue that starts a long-term business relationship. And ultimately, the aim is for the other person to learn more about how your business can help them.

But concise introductions aren’t only important for investors, they’re necessary for networking and growth. How is anybody going to tell anybody about your product if they can't describe it in a few words? Because people need a simple way to spread word about your business, here is a clever and simple phrase to include in your introduction: the high-concept pitch.

Make every word count.

What is your product? What does it do? Who needs it? Too many questions to be answered in a mere 20 words. But the high-concept pitch can answer most of them in a couple words. It represents a business’s essence in a single phrase. Here are some examples of high-concept pitches for movies:

  • A lawyer is forced to tell the truth for 24 hours: Liar Liar

  • What if Peter Pan grew up? Hook

  • Horror film in the ocean: Jaws

  • Dinosaur theme park: Jurassic Park

  • He’s having the day of his life, over and over again: Groundhog Day

A good high-concept pitch should make your offering sound both unique and relatable. Use it as an attention grabber in your 20-word starter that describes your product and vision.

Finally, give your audience something that will stick with them.

The introduction is your chance to present the clearest and most concise explanation of your business. Make the 20 words count; make them unique and project confidence. And remember that the best introductions are natural, repeatable, and customizable.

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