Whether you’re a recruiter pitching a job to a candidate, an inside salesperson on a call, or an outbound salesperson delivering a pitch in-person, pitching is a huge part of your job. Depending on the industry, your prospect/customer is receiving numerous sales calls each day. How do you differentiate yourself from the rest with your pitch?
Preparation for a pitch is obviously a no-brainer. But the way in which you prepare can make a big difference. By practicing in front of a mirror and/or recording yourself, you’re seeing what the potential customer is seeing. Also, ask a friend/loved one to watch your pitch. You may have not noticed that you constantly fidget with your hands, or touch your face, or shrug too much. But noting that while you’re practicing enables you to adjust and improve your presentation skills.
Another part of preparation is preparing the technology side. Far too often, we watch presenters fidget with their laptops and identify problems with the grammar in their PowerPoints. It’s not the end of the world when this happens, but it’s certainly preventable if you look into the space in which you’ll be presenting beforehand.
Starting out the recruiting call/sales call/pitch by telling the prospect what to expect in terms of content and length can put both parties at ease. By setting the schedule upfront, you’re removing insecurities that YOU may have about the prospect becoming disengaged, and you’re removing any thoughts in the prospect’s head that are saying, how much longer is this going to be? The transparency helps keep both parties’ minds where they need to be- on the pitch and not the clock.
If you’ve prepared, you’ve done some research on the client. Now, apply your knowledge of the client and frame your pitch in terms that will resonate with them. In order to be trusted, you must be in their operating reality. What needs/pain points will you solve for your client? How can you solve their pain points better than anyone else? Can you prove it? Have intelligent questions prepared for them, and allow the client/prospect to ask as many questions as they want.
You’re probably familiar with the most common objections that customers will bring to you. Have your rebuttals mapped out and well-rehearsed. Something that can be helpful in covering all of your bases is a pre-call planning worksheet.
Authenticity means a great deal to people. Not only does it help people to trust you, but it also brings life and spark to an ordinary pitch. It’s what separates the great pitches from the good ones. Yes, your prospect needs to like your idea. But it’s equally as important for the client to like you. You’re pitching yourself just as much as your product or service, remember that!