How To Pitch Yourself As An Opportunity
Craft a personal pitch that seals you into someone’s memory.
The first sentence we use to describe ourselves can either seal us into someone’s memory or sink us.
One can sniff confidence, thoughtfulness, and kinship through the way someone presents themselves. As business owners, this first sentence is an opportunity if we position ourselves correctly.
That’s why I don’t leave this first sentence up to chance, I think about what I’ll say in advance and change it up frequently depending on who I’m speaking to and what I need right now.
Here are some frameworks I use to think about my personal pitch critically, with the goal of boosting the memorability of who I am and what I do. The more that people remember what I do, the higher likeliness that I’ll be connected to the people I should meet.
Frame it in a pain point
I frame my pitch in a pain point because I want people to remember me by the problems that I solve.
This way, whenever a person who has met me engages with someone who is struggling with the pain point I solve, they immediately think of me. If I’m lucky, I’ll be referred to that person.
When framing your pain point-focused pitch, make it simple and specific.
Romantic, wordy pitches don’t translate well verbally and are hard to memorize. I often frame my pitch as: I help womxn entrepreneurs make their first $200K in sales. Specific pain point, simple, and easy to remember.
What are you needing at the moment?
I’ve gotten into the habit of changing my pitch according to what I need at the moment so that my pitch also acts as an ask.
By default, I’ll use the pitch above to introduce the work I do, but if for example, I’m currently organizing an event around diversity and inclusion and I’d love to spark some conversations and support around it, I’ll talk about my passion project instead.
This way, I use my pitch to not only introduce a passion of mine in addition to my work, but also as a conversation starter to ask for something I need.
3 drink test
When I was getting trained by my fundraising mentor, I was frequently told that my pitch had to pass the 3 drink test.
My pitch had to be simple and memorable enough that someone with 3 drinks in them could repeat it back to me and could still recite the pitch from memory the next day.
This is an easy test to try out on someone who doesn’t know what you do. The easiest way to refine a pitch to pass this test is to draw references to business models people already know or to frame it as a pain point as noted above.
I’ll more easily remember (and repeat to others) that you’re the TaskRabbit of makeup artists rather than that you’re an on-demand mobile app that populates a list of makeup artists for hire in one’s area and facilitates transactions between customers and makeup artists.
The fewer mental models people have to build in their brains to understand what you do, the stronger stickiness your pitch will have.
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