Pitching for the Creative England Accelerator

Yesterday I pitched for the Creative England accelerator in Bournemouth which was a great exercise to refine a 7 minute pitch to a panel of 6 people.

So I thought I would explain how I prepared and what I spoke about yesterday and although I don’t know whether I’ve been accepted, it can only help BeBirbal.

1. Google Best Pitches
It’s simple, google best pitches and there’s an endless list of how to pitch to investors. It might’ve been an accelerator that I was applying for but the process is still the same

I found this breakdown of a tech star pitch and found it really helpful. Jump into minute 9 and 20 seconds to get straight to it
http://youtu.be/RAKJcWYAvW4
Much is covered in the above but here’s what I selected as the most important

1a) introduce the app quickly

1b) why have you started your project, what problem does it solve?

1c) show you’ve done your research and you know your stuff

1d) why are you the man for the job, show you have experience?

1e) what will make you stand out- an exciting marketing opportunity, a letter of intent?

1f) make sure you have a finish- a final thought and invite questions

2. Practice, practice, practice
Make sure you’re well rehearsed and comfortable with your pitch. I wrote it out first and reread it many times. Then I recorded myself giving the pitch using the voice memo app and then went for a cycle to play it many times and start repeating it as I cycled! Then I wrote down bullet points to guide me through the pitch. I continued to go over it in the days leading up to the pitch, focusing on paragraphs that I kept losing my way on. I practised every half an hour the 2 days before and then when I’d run through successfully on the last day I stopped practising- I was ready and felt confident.

3. Be passionate
I was excited that I had more people to explain my app to and the what I’d accomplished with the product and even marketing opportunities. I knew I was going to be given some tough questions but I was confident I would have well thought out answers. I should have after all, already considered most of their questions. It wasn’t as though they would be finding a reason for me to pack up and go home, I would be able to fill my answers with even more reasons why I thought BeBirbal would be a success.
I was nervous, it’s natural pitching to 6 people but I was comfortable I would portray myself strongly and with a good knowledge of my industry and product

4. Be Nice
It’s important that you demonstrate yourself as a polite and respectful person, make sure you say hello with a smile and shake people’s hand’s firmly while looking at them. A very simple gesture but one that goes miles. It’s a favourite of my Grandad’s who always made me shake his hand firmly

5. They’re real people
Remember that the people you’re pitching to aren’t superior or need to be put on a pedestal, they’ve been in your position and have nerves and worries like you. Treat them as normal people who you can communicate with otherwise you’ll be holding them in high esteem that only effects your nerves

This is what I’ve learnt so good luck. What would you suggest?

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