March 16, 2015
Entrepreneurs are constantly pitching, it comes with the startup life. From pitch events to one-on-one meetings with VCs, it’s all about that pitch. If you’re at SXSW–or any major tech event for that matter–startup pitching is part of the soundtrack of the festival mayhem.
Last night, Tech.Co hosted our annual SXSW Startup Celebration Pitch Competition where 24 startups had the opportunity to pitch their ideas to a panel of renowned judges. Entrepreneurs had one minute to pitch, which can be very challenging with all things considered. After the competition, I asked the judges how some of the pitches could be improved. According to them, for most startups, the number one mistake most entrepreneurs make is not actually sharing what it is that your product does.
This might sound like a simple mistake, but you would be surprised by how many entrepreneurs bury their lead in the pitch. If you can’t describe your business in one sentence, then you don’t understand it well enough.
Here are some tips on nailing down your startup pitch:
1. Get to the Point
If you have very limited time, make sure to mention exactly what your idea is and what problem you’re solving. As tech journalists, we often hear pitches that don’t explain what the product does.
2. Don’t Waste Time With Anecdotes
If you don’t make the connection between the story and your idea quick enough, you will lose your audience’s interest. Sometimes it’s important to tell a story that relates to your product, but you need to gauge how much time you have.
3. Be Concise
Many times, entrepreneurs get caught up explaining the technicalities of their products. As complicated as your product may be, make sure to keep it simple. You won’t impress anyone with big words.
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