Pitching complex technologies to a number of investors and industry executives across Silicon Valley, I have come to learn when people really “get it.” At the beginning I started by using industry jargon to make the product seem really impressive but usually I just got a pretend nod or a glaze from listeners who eventually walked away. I realized that I was the only one talking and I got no real feedback. Then as I got better at describing the product and shifting from selling my product to focusing on what it is actually doing (so people can automatically see how it benefits them and our society) I started seeing three amazing things happen:

  1. No More Product/Service Questions: No one was asking me questions about the product anymore – They just got it. I used to spend 30 minutes with one person telling them what it is. They would keep asking me questions and I would say well it is kind of like that but it also encompasses this. I learned that if I kept talking about the product – the emphasis was not on its impact. That’s what people truly want at the end of the day.
  2. Ideas for Marketing Product/Service: They started giving me ideas on how to market and sell. As I made the transition from the product to describing what it is actually doing, people started understanding the product intuitively. They could connect and relate to the scenario in which the product was supposed to be used.
  3. Ideas for Product/Service Use: They began telling me how they are going to use it. When they give you ideas of markets or additional revenue streams or applications in their daily life – you have struck gold with clarity! If your potential customers are doing this then you know you are on your way!

Next time you are pitching, if the conversation ends up with new ideas and applications for your product or service, then you know you are headed in the right direction. If you can get your pitch down to one sentence, you’ll be in even better shape. Check out my previous blog https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/reverse-engineering-one-sentence-pitch-laxmi-gandhi/ on how you can do that.