7 Critical Elements of an Entrepreneurial Pitch

There are 7 critical elements of an effective entrepreneur “Pitch” that works (video here on the blog):

The 7 elements of a good entrepreneurial elevator pitch 
A good entrepreneurial elevator pitch will contain these 7 elements:

  1. description of the problem you solve 
  2. the individuals or groups that will benefit 
  3. the specific product or service you will deliver 
  4. how you differ from competitors and other substitutes 
  5. how you will make money 
  6. what resources you require (money, time, support, expertise) 
  7. an outline of the value that will be created
What do you think?  What is the best pitch you have seen?  How much time do you spend preparing and practicing your pitch?
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Pitching: Get the first 10 words right

What are the first ten words of your next pitch, speech or presentation?

Participants of Wayra Week Barcelona 2012

I was at Wayra Week Barcelona this week working with 30 selected startup businesses to prepare their companies for growth and investment.  All were looking to raise a round of venture capital financing for their businesses.

I spent a lot of time going from group to group asking “what are the first 10 words of your pitch for tomorrow?”

I received a range of replies:

  • “Huh.  Oh.  Ah.  Yeah.  My name is… and our business is …”
  • “We are a platform for connecting users to providers…”
  • “We have a solution for the publishing industry…”
  • “Hello.  Thanks.  I am very happy for this opportunity…”
  • “Uhh.  Why?  Only ten words…”

These answers are lessons in putting audiences to sleep.

Lets get it clear.  Investors hear hundreds of pitches.   They know they are probably not going to invest in your business and want to confirm this assumption as quickly as possible.  They have years of experience in knowing when to switch off listening to the pitch and check their email on the blackberry, or plan their ski weekend.  Why let them tune out before you have finished your first 10 words?

What should the first 10 words achieve?

  1. We are not here to waste your time
  2. We are professionals (we prepare well and practice lots)
  3. We are a serious business
  4. We know what you are interested in
  5. We know what criteria you will use to take this decision

The first 10 words are vitally important.  The first 10 words gets you attention for 30 seconds.  You then have 30 seconds to earn attention for the next 5 minutes.  If your first 10 words loses the audience, you will not get them back.

What are your first 10 words of your next pitch, speech or presentation?  

I think there are only 3 ways to start a pitch.  Interested?

Resources for Wayra Week Barcelona 20 Feb 2012

This is a resource page for the session at Wayra Week Barcelona on 20th February 2012.

Event Hashtag: 
Organiser:  Wayra.org

Follow Today’s Speakers (Bios here)

Preparing a Pitch

Improve your Speaking email course:  http://bit.ly/practicespeak

Video Lessons:

Posts on Entrepreneurship:

Getting your emails read
Great Organisations that Can Help you Develop as a person and a professional:

10 Commandments for Business Development from Goldman Sachs

John Whitehead, co-head of Goldman Sachs in the 1970s, wrote the following 10 commandments that guided their business development efforts:

  1. Don’t waste your time going after business you don’t really want.
  2. The boss usually decides— not the assistant treasurer. Do you know the boss?
  3. It is just as easy to get a first-rate piece of business as a second-rate one.
  4. You never learn anything when you’re talking.
  5. The client’s objective is more important than yours.
  6. The respect of one person is worth more than an acquaintance with 100 people.
  7. When there’s business to be found, go out and get it!
  8. Important people like to deal with other important people. Are you one?
  9. There’s nothing worse than an unhappy client.
  10. If you get the business, it’s up to you to see that it’s well-handled.
Good list.  What do you think?

I came across this list thanks to Mark Graham’s post over at The Entrepreneurs’ Organisation blog.