The Next Titan Season 5 popularly known as @thenexttitan avails you the opportunity to present, pitch and unveil your idea, startup or business and you have the chance to win five millionaire naira and a ford range rover. Even though, I am using this post to prepare my pitch for the Next Titan Season 5 auditioning taking place in Lagos this week. Yes! One of my startups (www.agromerchant.com) was shortlisted to onboard at this year auditioning. Few contestants will be screened in to be among the top 50 that participate in the in-house for 10weeks and jostle for the winning prize of five million naira and a branded Range Rover to complement the smooth running of your business. For me, it is not just the winning money, I am excited that I will be featuring at the auditioning this week and I look forward to it as it will give me another beautiful opportunity to network, meetup with winning entrepreneurs in different and most importantly, to further hone my pitch.
You can only know you are a great pitcher when you are standing in front of seasoned business judges and they give you thumb up and useful feedbacks. Anytime I have the opportunity to pitch my startups in front of an audience, judges or apply for startup funding, I always jump at it like a wide bear. I have realized that to win in business, remain relevant and build fortune, you must keep selling. Keep pitching. Glitching.
By now, you should be sensing this post is going to be quite long (don’t worry not too long though to scare you) but you are going to learn a great deal that will spur you to the next level and strategically positioned you to win any pitch, sales, grants or funding competition. I am reaching out to you as I am preparing to feature in the next edition of @thenexttitan. Sharing my personal thoughts, experience, plans and exponential learnings empower me to plan and practice better. It is my utmost belief that someone will learn from this post. I look forward to also learning from you.
More info about the Next Titan
This might excite you. I run this blog to help startups, aspiring, emerging and practicing entrepreneurs and people that love to make money doing what they love. I teach you how to leverage your skills, passion, technology, digital presence, other people money (OPM), other people time (OPT), other people expertise or knowledge, funding and opportunities to quickly enhance yourself, brand and business. Who wouldn’t love learning how to leverage what he has within his reach to reach out to and get what he wants in life. I teach you how to be rich leveraging what you have within your reach. You can leverage available grants like Tony Elumelu Foundation $10,000 grants or the next titans $15,000 competition.
Pitching Beyond Money: Great Roles Pitching Plays Beyond Raising money
Pitching has helped me to quickly discover my strength and weaknesses beyond just raising money or capital for startups. I was once an introvert and shy person for many years. Growing up wasn’t easy for me when it comes to building relationship and smoothening my communication skills. I was confined within the walls of my thought and shut out from the numerous opportunities the outside world presents. It took me many years of struggling and battling to discover myself, this became a great and exciting moment for me. It inspires me to want to impact knowledge and experience to others. If you love teaching others, you will definitely be a great pitcher.
I love teaching others, beyond just been my passion and giving me the platform to inspire, mentor and lead others- it gives me ample opportunities to improve my skills- communication, presentation, and interpersonal skills and ability to learn from others which form the bulk of you been a great pitcher and effective strategist, marketer and networker. Teaching others helps my growth. What a great benefit?
Why Practicing Pitching
Pitching should be a daily thing and practicing it should be done daily. You have to put deliberate and strategic effort into your pitch if you want to go far and become successful in business, your workplace and any project execution plus presentations. Hey, it doesn’t matter maybe you are applying for and pitching at The next Titan 5million grant competition, shark tank, writing a business proposal or Tony Elumelu Foundation $10, 000 grant- what matter is your prowess and ability to sell yourself, your product or service anywhere you find yourself.
Your pitch practice and preparation should have started from when you are still in school. I find it amusing when I see thousands of students dodging leadership positions and team lead. They don’t want to forefront presentations- reasons why many fail interviews despite been brilliant at school.
A decade ago, you might not be needing to be a great pitcher to succeed, not any more. The competition is now stiffer, tougher and more demanding. If you want to be ahead of your game without much effort, you much be great pitcher or seller.
What is a Pitch?
A pitch is a concise, detailed and sequence presentations or arrangement in a manner that characterize all the features and benefits of your products or service to your customers, investors and team. Pitching can be interrelated to selling yourself, brands or product. A good pitch must project accurate data, statistics, numbers, and figures. A good pitch must be appealing to listeners or audience emotion and it must be value-driven. Your pitch must be a win-win strategy. Enough of the definition. I have simplified enough for you to understand.
Types of pitching
There are two forms or ways your pitching can be presented. It is either you are writing your pitch or you are verbalizing your pitch. Writing pitch or verbal pitch.
For example, applying for grants or seed capital from organizations like Tony Elumelu Foundation grant, you don’t need verbal pitch, what is only required is basically writing. In some instances, like the next Titan competition, you need both writing and speaking (verbal) pitching.
Models of Pitching
There are three broad categories or models of pitching.
Elevator Pitch: as the name implies, how would it be when you meet personalities like Richard Bradson, Strive Masiyiwa or Tony Elumelu in an elevator. I know you want to quickly maximize that opportunity as a prepared entrepreneur to speak about yourself and brand. You only have 30-60seconds before the elevator door opens. You have no time to go into details or gibberish. You only have few seconds to fly or regret wasting such an opportunity. You can see the core reason why you must always prepare ahead for your pitching. Preparation makes you ready always even without or on short notice.
Written Pitch: not all pitches are verbal or oral. Many pitches could be in the written form. Some pitch is presented in form of emails or competition which are done through filing of online forms or sending business plan or proposal. In this type of investment pitch, you don’t need to appear in person. It is like sending out your CV to prospect employers or interviewers. Your written pitch will be vetted by a team of expertise that are skilled in numbers, financials and value statements.
Conference Pitch deck: you attended a conference or business meeting and you are called up to woo investors with your pitch. It is normally called pitch deck. You can be called upon to present a smart and concise pitch deck to a small or large audience, angel investors, board of customers or foundations like NGOs’. It is more prepared for and most times expected than elevator pitch that is sudden. In pitch deck, you prepare your pitch in creative PowerPoint slides, and PDF which should comprise your business profile which include-
— The name of your company or startup,
— The problem statement you are trying to solve
— The proffered solution you are bringing to the market
— Market Validation (this is also called your proof of concept)
Your market showing your target market, market size and market share
Product or service (what are you offering your existing or prospectus customers or clients)
— Traction (how many customers have you sold to? How many customers have patronized or used your products or services?)
— Business Model (how are you making money? How do you generate profit? How are you generating revenue?) if you don’t have a clear picture on how you want to generate revenue and make profit, your business will be vague. Your pitch deck must clearly state your revenue model in simple and clear terms.
— Competition (who are your competitors- both direct and indirect competitors) Competitive or Comparative Edge (this should show your positioning statement, unique selling point or proposition. In simple word, what makes you distinct and difference from your competitors).
— Team (who are your team members- management team, board of advisors and probably board of directors and working staff. Show their expertise, experience and skills. Your team profile must be brief and catchy)
— Contact information (this should your contact details- company website, blog, official emails, phone numbers and office address including your company social media handles like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter).
The above pitch deck statements make a very strong and bold broad and simple statements about the company you are running or you want to run. Your market valuation and traction will make investors to quickly see through the lens of your startup to determine your company valuation- your company worth.
Displaying confidence, aura and readiness are determined by how prepared you are. You will mostly be given 2-3minutes to do this. No long story. If you want investor money, be apt and concise.
Don’t be scared about all the technical statements above. They may look technical but when you have a mentor most especially a grant and investors’ money winning mentor that can hold you by the hand, you will soon discover the simplicity of those terms. I have been there, in your shoe when I was starting my disruptive business, I can help you climb the ladder faster than you might expect. In three month or lesser, you will become a guru in understanding startups, numbers, figures, data and how to boldly write, speak and prepare your pitch either to one investor, group of investors or to a large audience or judges. You will develop the essential skills you need to prepare a winning pitch any day anytime.
Join my network today and I will help you become who you want to become faster. You can start to achieve and live your dream in 3months or lesser. Likewise, writing and speaking a winning pitch shouldn’t be stressful. Enroll in my high-flying startup mentorship network.
There is no two ways around it. Real success beyond basic needs requires conscious and deliberate hard work, dedication, commitment and consistency. Lasting success don’t beckon to the lazy.
If you are doing what you love and working out your passion, hard work becomes smart and fun. No matter your work, create fun around it. Pitching is fun!
7 Simple but most Effective Ways to Practice and Prepare your Pitch
1. Pitch before your spouse- one person that can be frank and blunt with you without fear is your spouse. Walk up to your spouse and practice your pitch in his/her presence. It is a plausible idea.
2. Pitch in front of selected audience- don’t say no to speaking engagement even if you are not paid. Speaking in front of audience helps you to hone your presentations and communication skills. it also helps your interpersonal relationship and networking skills.
3. Pitch before your team- if you want to go far business or career, learn how to build and work with a team. Don’t be a solo entrepreneur or run a one-man show. It saps and dissipate energy.
4. Pitch before your mentor or thought leader- don’t isolate yourself and struggle alone. Be open to receive help. Spending some cash to get help will only fast-track your growth. Be wise! Get a mentor and ensures he listens to your selling or investment pitch. Mentorship accelerates your growth beyond you.
5. Pitch in front of a standing mirror. Look yourself in the mirror and talk, sell and pitch to yourself. Do self-evaluation, appraise yourself and score yourself. If you love yourself, you will be transparent and accountable in your appraisal. Don’t deceive yourself. Study your body language and gesticulation.
6. Record your voice pitch- get a phone and do voice recording of your pitch. After the recording, listen to your pitch over and over again. listen to your tone, strength and vibrations of your voice. It is a wow moment.
7. Read your pitch aloud- if it is a written pitch, read it aloud to yourself before sending it to potential investors. Reading it loud will help you to quickly spot unnoticeable errors and mistakes. Don’t be lazy about this. Hone your writing skills by reading it what you pen down.
Wow! This article is extremely important if you want to be relevant in life, in your career or business. You can’t execute any project without pitching. You can’t get access to any opportunities without pitching. It is either you are a job seeker, attending interviews, starting a business or traveling outside the country, you must surely pitch-sell yourself, brand or project. As a startup, work on your selling and investment pitch- you will continuously be on the lookout for more customers and investors to stay afloat in business.
Go and leverage on strategic pitching to win in life or you die trying. Bitter but better to and know stick with the truth. I have taken my time to write over 2,000 words in this article just to help you get your footing faster. Be on top always.
In my next pitching series, I will elaborate more on 10 super-ways to hone, improve and accelerate your pitching skills to quickly position you to become investors choicest. I will also write on the essential and Wow ingredients your pitch or selling presentation must contain to get your choicest investors and paying customers.
To be on top always, you need a mentor. Don’t hesitate to join my 30+ millionaire mentorship network today. I will soon be shutting the door for this year. The earlier, the better as it remains just a fewer slot to be occupied. Get knowledge to be the shark and not the smaller fishes. Take your slot here today before the window closes.