An amazing pitch is not only a short presentation of your business idea or your company in 3-5 min. Pitching is much more. Pitching is an art! Art of word, gesture, rhetoric, facial expression and of course competence. Let’s concentrate on your attitude before, during and after your pitch.

I was lucky to attend the pitch training of Bernd Litzka, who is on the Board of Directors of „Business Angels Europe“. He gave us really practical and useful recommendations on how to stay cool during a pitch.

#1: Pitch should be emotional! Why?

The main purpose of the pitch is getting business angels excited about your company and making them trust you. Your pitch should inspire them to the highest point possible. Why’s that? After the pitch, while talking to the Business Angels about formalities, the inspiration will be decreasing. The higher the level of inspiration after your pitch, the more time you will spend talking to an inspired investor.

#2: Why should founders be motivating and motivated?

Every Business Angel knows that after the first positive results hard times will come. When the start-up world is crushing down, it is crucial for founders to be emotionally strong enough to motivate their team and bring it to a safe bay. Show your charisma during the pitch! Don’t confuse it with the show.

#3: Pitch is the time to make business!

Don’t think that pitching and then leaving your contacts is all there is to successful business. Go to Business Angels after your pitch, talk to them, get some feedback, talk about next steps, use this time when they are still thrilled about you. Every hour or day you lose during this phase will take you further away from your goals.

Wanna get your Pitch on? Register until April 3rd to Startup Salzburg Weekend which will take part on April 28th.

Wie man in Salzburg pitcht

DO’s

  • Check the location and the stage before the pitch. You should know the room very well. Everyone will notice that you feel at home. It will make you look confident.
  • Pin something on the floor to mark the best place where you want to stand during the pitch. It will give you the better orientation.
  • At the beginning of the pitch say your name and the name of your project clearly.
  • If you present your team, start by introducing your team first and yourself second.
  • Try to throughout the pitch keep an eye on the jury/audience.
  • I know it’s hard but keep your hands down and raise them only when you want to highlight some points. It looks very strong when you use your hands while showing figures. (e.g. We got TEN early adopters for our product after the FIRST day of our marketing campaign!)
  • Spread peaks of some positive facts into your “normal” content to keep the attention of BA’s constantly. For 3 min. pitch it is ok to use 3 peaks with some outstanding information. (e.g. PEAK 1: After the expo we signed SEVEN letters of intent, PEAK 2: We reached 20K followers on Facebook in ONE week, PEAK 3: We reached our breakeven point 8 months earlier than expected).
  • When becoming an experienced pitcher, you will be able to observe the reaction of the audience to some parts of your pitch, so you can shorten or extend them next time. When being a pitch newbie, spontaneous reactions will almost be impossible. To be honest, the only thing you’ll want are the 3 minutes to be over.

Have you read this story? Storytelling for Startups (DE)

DON’Ts

  • Don’t be boring and monotonous! Don’t show that your pitch is something you just learned by heart.
  • Don’t say SORRY for anything!
  • Don’t look on the floor. Only people that hide something look on the floor.
  • Some start-ups find it to be cool to behave a bit chilly and slack when for example, listing their clients. It’s a bad thing! Don’t give a feeling that you need some time to list your prominent clients looking on the ceiling while doing it. Be like “And our clients are well-known companies that you all know. They are PAM, PAM, PAM!”
  • It may sound strange but don’t laugh! Laughing on the stage shows anxiety and uncertainty. Don’t laugh even at the end of your pitch.
  • NEVER say THANK YOU after any presentation! Instead give CALL TO ACTION! “My team and I are here the whole day. Use the chance to talk to us!” or “We are here to find the best partner for manufacturing our product. We will be happy to talk to you after the presentation about possible partnerships”.

Pitch in Salzburg

Insider tipp:

To get the feeling of lightness, imagine yourself talking about your idea to your school friend you haven’t seen for 10 years, sitting with him in a bar. You want him to be excited of what you are doing and at the same time you want him to understand it!

More useful links:

Good luck!

Alina kommt ursprünglich aus Moskau lebt seit mehreren Jahren in Salzburg. Unternehmergeist, New Economy, „out of the box“-Denkweise und Rulebreaker-Mentalität inspirieren sie in jedem Bereich ihres Lebens. Sie hat zwei Jahre bei einem Startup gearbeitet und die Liebe zur Turbulenz ist ihr geblieben.

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