Most employees in agencies aren’t the biggest fans of pitch presentations. They can be stressful, restrictive for creativity and usually come with a really tight deadline to deliver a solution or an idea for (potential) client’s problem. Whether you’re working in a creative agency, digital agency or a full-service agency, I’m quite certain you’ve had your fair share of pitch presentations. For some, you may have done some crazy stunt because a pitch brief you’ve received allowed that. Others were straightforward, with a simple PowerPoint template which you customized according to the needs of potential investors, customers, partners or clients. In any case, an agency’s pitch presentation should be a kaleidoscope of creative and persuasive ideas with solid and informative solutions.
The whole point of a pitch presentation isn’t just to roll off a list of reasons why a prospective client should hire you, it’s merely a basis. It should provide value to them, for their company, brand, product or service. It is up to you to prove to the other side you are the right team to fit their needs. To do so, you need to show them you understand their brand and can help them with whatever service they want you to pitch them. Remember: pitch presentations aren’t about you, they are about your clients.
And so it begins…
Alright, so how and where to start with creating a pitch presentation? During the last couple of years in Kontra, I’ve been in charge of many pitch presentation preparations, so I’m quite familiar with the whole process. Once we receive a call or an email with the official brief or invitation to a pitch, all of us in Kontra like to sit together and go over the details.
- What do we know about this company? What can we find out about them by simply Googling them, but also asking around if necessary? Do we know someone who can tell us more and give us insight which could help us get a better understanding of their brand and company culture?
It is essential to know your client before they become a client. With a better understanding of the potential client, you’ll be able to adjust any further steps in pitch presentation because you’ll be aware of who you are talking to. That way, you can personalize pitch presentation without cluttering it with information that won’t matter to the other side.
Once you’ve gathered all the necessary information on your prospective client, tailor your pitch presentation according to that. Let’s say you’re participating in a social media marketing pitch and you’ve noticed your potential client doesn’t use Instagram as much as it should. You can use this to your advantage, especially now that Instagram is such a huge deal. Suggest a comprehensive marketing strategy for their Instagram, how to achieve better results with it, why it would be good for their brand and everything they can get in return.
Create a concept for the whole pitch presentation
Don’t even bother opening a new PowerPoint file before you’ve prepared an overall concept in your head. Even better, put it down on paper and work from there. Make sure you have a flow that is easy to follow, both for you when you’ll be presenting it in front of your potential client, but for them as well.
There are a couple of things to remember:
- Focus on the prospect’s challenges, not yourself. It definitely mandatory to introduce yourself, say some key point about your agency and introduce the team, but don’t bother going over every single accomplishment and award you’ve received throughout the years. What is more important to the other side is that you present them with a solution to their problem and convince them that you understand their brand. Show them you’re the best agency to help them overcome their challenges. Also, don’t shy away from pointing out you’ve done research on them. In fact, it can only impress them. For example, you’ve found out your potential client usually sells around 300 products per month? Great, tell them that and then proceed to explain it to them how you can double it.
- Be very clear about marketing strategy you are proposing. Note that people you’ll be pitching this presentation to might not be familiar with all terms you use daily. Don’t try to impress them by using flashy terms if you’re not going to explain it to them. Even though if you are pitching your idea to a company that has used this kind of service before, that doesn’t mean you’ll be presenting in front of people who had anything to do with that. Let’s say you’re pitching an idea for content marketing to a room full of people from various departments. It’s safe to say a lot of them don’t know what SEO is and how it works unless you explain it to them. The same thing goes for metrics you’ll be measuring: be very direct by saying which tools you’ll be using, how will that help you optimize your strategy, and how these results will help your clients in the future.
- Make sure you have a professional do all your finishing touches on the layout of the presentation. In Kontra, we usually prepare all texts and visuals in a plain, blank presentation, then hand it over to our designer who makes sure our final PowerPoint presentation will be visually stunning for a client-facing meeting. This means we use our agency’s colors, fonts, and logos so the client can be sure it’s coming from Kontra when looking at the deck alone. Furthermore, it’s quite important not to clutter the slides with too much text, rather break it down to bullet points. Make text visible from a reasonable distance and use a font that is big and bold enough to be seen from the back of the room.
Tell a story
Storytelling is the ultimate skill in marketing, so be sure to use it in a presentation as well. That way, it will be a lot easier and more interesting to follow the flow of the ideas you’re presenting. By telling a story, you pull your audience in which allows you to create an emotional connection. And don’t forget more people remember stories than cold, hard facts. With great storytelling, your pitch presentation can introduce the problem in the introduction, create tension in the middle, and then show the solution for a grand finale. By presenting them with the ideas that will lead to a happy end from which they will benefit, your potential new clients should easily become – just clients. 🙂
And there you go, all the tricks and tips which should help you seal the deal on your next big pitch. Is there anything else you think it’s crucial for good pitch presentations? Let us know!