how to pitch lesson 9

We’ve been going through all things pitching, so now it’s important to consider why your pitch didn’t win.

Speed dating

Pitching can be a little like speed dating, there’s nothing personal if you didn’t get the gig. This is why I say I never spent an hour on my initial pitch, because it can certainly be a waste of time. You can’t get downbeat because lead generation is a vital and ongoing part of business life. Just keep pitching.

Speculation

I have certainly been guilty of doing this in the past. Sometimes people just need to get an idea of who is out there, timescales and costs. Even though they make all the right noises, they aren’t really interested. One other worrying trend is that large agencies/companies are aware of the fact that they get overcharged for everything and will fish for free ideas and cheap suppliers. You might think this is paranoid but a number of projects I’ve been asked about from seemingly small companies “with limited budget” have turned out to be national TV ads. Luckily my spider senses tingled.

Bigger Fish

No matter how experienced you get, they’ll always be someone with more experience, a better portfolio, a nicer website. That’s just the nature of the world. It can certainly feel like a dog eats dog world sometimes.

Still Blind

A large aspect of pitching is you don’t know who else they are talking to, the prices they have pitched, and the things they are willing to do to win the business. You can sometimes split hairs if you find out someone you’d consider less suitable than yourself wins work, but there are a million and one reasons why they might go with someone else. It could just be they hit it off over the phone, or their pitch included more revisions than yours. The biggest competition is still them deciding to do it themselves.

What you can control

With so many aspects out of your control all you can ensure is that you pitch effectively using the tips throughout this series. It’s also crucial to respond quickly to questions and although this may get in the way of paid work you’re already doing, but you can never stop pitching for work.

©2020 Oliver Gwynne

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