I recently finished reading a 2012 tome by Daniel Pink called To Sell Is Human. I thought it was excellent. It revolves around the premise that we all practice selling, even those of us in non-sales roles. We sell our kids on going to bed on time, our company on our project over someone else’s, our spouse on this holiday destination over that, and so on.

One of the sections is about 6 different ways to pitch a product, service or idea. They’re developments from the tried, trusted and a little outdated elevator pitch. Here they are:

  1. The Once Upon a Time pitch. You tell a story as follows: Once upon a time [there was a situation]. Every day [something happened, like a problem]. One day [introduce your solution or idea]. Because of that [something different happened]. because of that [there was a specific benefit or good outcome]. Until finally [there was a new situation brought on by your solution or idea].
  2. The twitter pitch. As it sounds, can you get your basic idea over in 140 characters or less, ideally less to allow others to retweet it?
  3. The rhyming pitch. Something is more memorable, catchy, lasting and prone to propagation if it rhymes. Example: if you don’t make it rhyme, you’ll need to make more time
  4. The one word pitch. If you had to distill everything it’s about into one word, what would it be?
  5. The question pitch. A pitch can be more powerful than a statement as it invites you to think about fairly solid facts. Think: what could you do with a faster internet connection?
  6. The subject line pitch. Designing your offering like the subject line of an email that you really want people to open is a really good way to tighten your pitch

All of these have their merits and situations they’re best suited to. The book has loads of other thought-provoking recommendations and is well worth a proper read.

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