Creative Director Alan Williams attended and presented at this year’s FITC Styleframes NYC. This conference is a unique opportunity for industry leaders and Fortune 500 companies to discuss the process and nuances of the art of pitching. It’s a great blend of creative and logistic perspectives.
There are a myriad of opinions on how to successfully pitch your ideas, and here are a few more to add to the mix: 5 tips on pitching that Alan took away form this year’s conference.
Always Pitch in person, if the opportunity is available to you. This is the most impactful and memorable way to present your ideas. If you are not able to present in person, according to IBM’s Elizabeth Kiehner, try delivering your pitch standing up. The active participation of standing up and engaging (although they cannot see you) comes across in your voice and delivery.
Elizabeth goes on to say, when presenting multiple concepts, have a strong opinion as to what direction is your top choice. Your client is looking for your expertise and your particular voice. Leaving the client to guess your favorite, can instill doubt that you have found the perfect solution. Don’t undersell your opinion; they came to you for a reason.
Whether you are investing 20% of the budget on a pitch, or like Mike Alderson of Man Vs Machine, a simple test video shot on his iPhone, if the concept is smart, never underestimate your clients' ability to see it. Steve Viola, SVP of Design at FX, spoke to this fact, that when you know you've found the winning solution and the remaining concepts aren't yet there, remove them. Never risk diluting the potency of a strong concept for the sake of quantity.
During a panel discussion lead by Ben Radatz of MK12, we learned to make sure you are giving the client what they want: this includes ideation, budget range and restrictions. Remember that you are the expert. Don’t sell them on something that doesn’t make sense with the budget or the timeframe, or the potential team/studio capabilities. This can also mean making sure that you are not too hyper focused on one aspect of a client request and rather looking at what they are saying as a whole.
Elizabeth Kiehner also stated, artists shouldn’t be be addicted to pitching, but to winning. Understand what your company excels in and find the clients that appreciate that. Practicing discretion on what you will or won't pitch on will only increase your chances of success.
Of course there are always exceptions to every rule. The biggest take away is that there are many subtleties and techniques in the art of the pitch, most importantly, you need to hone your own voice and unique perspective and find out what works for you!