Both job seekers and business owners need to have a pitch that will quickly explain what they do and why they do it. To give our readers more information about the perfect pitch I spoke with Jacqueline Franchetti, Chief Marketing Officer of Franchetti Communications, about her firm’s pitch presentation coaching, which was designed to give executives the skills they need to deliver a pitch or sales presentation that gets results.

Q: What is a pitch and why would a small business owner or job seeker need one?

A: The pitch is the most important communication tool small business owners have in their arsenal. Businesses need the perfect pitch to succeed; it’s essential for getting heard, getting recognized and getting ahead. In business, a pitch is used to convey what you have to offer – it can be about you, about your product or service(s), about a great idea that needs funding, or about a new concept to present to your organization.  Job seekers will use their pitches when networking, on interviews and when introducing themselves to people who can give them job leads.

Q: How do you decide what to say?

A: Crafting the perfect pitch takes time. It’s one of the most daunting tasks you’ll ever accomplish, even for experienced communicators. To craft the perfect pitch, put your audience or customers first. You have to think ‘what’s in it for them,’ not ‘what’s in it for me.’ Most people have the hardest time translating what they are pitching into something that matters to their audiences. But that’s the most essential element. The ‘aha’ moment comes when speakers put themselves in their audience’s shoes. From there, they can craft a strong pitch.

Q: What verbal cues are important when giving a pitch?

A: One of the most important factors of successful communication is authenticity – demonstrating your passion and commitment to your message and showing that the pitch itself is well considered and thoughtful. Authenticity helps keep your pitch from becoming stale – the pitch itself or your delivery of it.

The most important way to demonstrate whether your pitch is worth paying attention to is by tailoring it for your audience. A room full of engineers will prioritize information differently than a room full of Wall Street investors. Businesses succeed with perfect pitches, so take the time and effort to customize your pitch for your audience.

Q: What is the most important thing to keep in mind as you deliver your pitch?

A: Remember this – only you know what you plan to say, the audience doesn’t. So if you have a misstep, you’re the only one who knows it. Keep going, keep smiling and don’t let it wreck your confidence.

Mindy Stern, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, ACC is a trusted HR advisor, career coach, author, speaker and president of AIM Resource Group Inc. Visit the website at www.aimresourcegroup.com  or call 718-217-1074 if you would like to learn more about your Perfect Pitch.

Franchetti Communications has been providing media interview and presentation training to high-level executives for 37 years and is consistently praised for its focus on message development.  Visit their website at www.franchetti.com.

Do you want your questions answered in this column? Send requests to: info@aimresourcegroup.com.