9 Strategies To Pitch An Idea Effectively (And Get The “Yes” You’ve Been Dreaming Of)

9 Strategies To Pitch Effectively (And Get The "Yes" You've Been Dreaming Of)

Pitching goes way beyond pitching. Sure, it can be an elevator pitch to a promising investor; but it can also be a job interview, a project presentation, or even a story of your life.

Are you a freelancer who’s about to pitch a proposal to your first big client?

Are you a tech founder who wants to win quality leads at a trade show exhibition?

Heck, are you a budding entrepreneur who wants to secure funding for a new idea?

Let’s roll:


Strategy 1. Unpack It Into Constituent Concepts, Principles and/or Steps

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Image credit: Pixabay

Complex ideas are ridden with jargon.

They’re boring and difficult to understand, especially when you’re pitching an idea to a crowd that hasn’t warmed up to you yet.

Break down your pitch into smaller, understandable blocks!

In this video, a blockchain expert explains blockchain technology to five different people: a child, a teenager, a college student, a graduate student, and another expert.

Observe how she constantly changes and positions her pitch according to these people’s level of understanding:

Strategy 2. Show, Don’t Tell

Say, you want to deliver a fundraising pitch. You want to convince a Fortune 500 corporate to donate to your non-profit organisation.

Which pitch is likelier to encourage them to reach out for their wallets?

a) “Your donation will help homeless people in the poorest neighbourhoods.”

b) “Every Sunday, we walk around the poorest neighbourhoods to meet people without homes. These homeless folks are often cold, hungry, and sick. Your donations help us to buy basic necessities and warm clothes and fund their daily doctor visits. Your support helps us better serve these underprivileged people.”

Showing creates a lingering effect. Telling doesn’t.


Strategy 3. Localise It

A pitch stuffed with Singlish will most likely not work in Australia. Similarly, a pitch full of Australian slangs will fall on deaf ears in Singapore.

Localise your pitch. Speak their language. You’ll be surprised how big of a difference it makes.


Strategy 4. “I-You” Focus Language

Use first person, second person, and third person to create powerful effects.

This doesn’t just work in any pitch, it works in your writing too.

Roy Peter Clark, American writer and coach, writes: “‘I’ or ‘me’ or ‘my’ makes a personal appeal. ‘We’ or ‘us’ proclaims collective power. ‘You’ makes prose sound conversational.”


Strategy 5. Personal Storytelling

Personal stories show the raw, human side of you.

Want to get a start-up capital grant? Have your eyes on a business mogul and want her as your mentor?

Dig into your memory palace and see if you can make a stronger point through your personal stories. As long as you can tie it all together, go for it!


Strategy 6. Icon-ify it

Did you know? We process visuals 60,000 times faster than text. Use icons in your slides. Websites like Flaticon and Icons8 have some of the best (and free) icons around.


Strategy 7. Visualisation

Take a beat from TED Talks speakers. Use simple, beautiful images that pull your audiences in and keep them engaged. Check out these 10 tips to create slides that complement your pitch and communicate your ideas.


Strategy 8. Historical and Contemporary References

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What do you do when you have to pitch about influence to a group of 17-year-olds?

For public speaking coach Benjamin Loh, he shared a controversy involving Logan Paul, an internet personality who’s incredibly popular amongst teenagers. Or was.

In December 2017, Logan uploaded a video of himself laughing at the body of a suicide victim in Japan’s Aokigahara forest. The video attracted widespread criticism, to the point where YouTube took actions against him and over 500,000 signed a petition to remove his channel.

If this doesn’t show the power of influence, we don’t know what will.

Go with a historical or pop culture reference if you want to pitch your idea effectively. It makes it unforgettable.


Strategy 9. Metaphors & Analogies

Tap into the power of metaphors and analogies to make your pitch sing.

During her TED talk about the 10 ways to have a better conversation, Celeste Headlee shared the importance of being brief.

She could’ve ended it on that note, but she took a step further – by sharing an analogy:

“A good conversation is like a miniskirt; short enough to retain interest, but long enough to cover the subject.”

Noticed how it paints an image in your head?

Metaphors and analogies connect the dots. Leverage it to make your pitch come alive.


This blog post is a recap of our recently completed pitching workshop facilitated by Benjamin Loh.






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