How to pitch?

Yesterday we gave an introduction about “how to pitch an idea, product and service” in Entrepreneur-Student Networking event in Oulu. We were asked to summarize the given tips into a blog post. So here it is, our free tips for pitching:

Tecinspire Pitch by Teemu Kivioja

Tecinspire Pitch by Teemu Kivioja

Introduction – what is a pitch?

A technique to tell about your idea, product or service in short & interesting way that aims for something. Most common pitch types are:

  • Sales pitch
  • Product pitch
  • Service pitch
  • Idea pitch
  • Investor pitch
  • Elevator pitch
  • Personal pitch

Pitching happens also in our daily life, when you propose something to someone. In this article we concentrate on idea, product and service pitching.

How to prepare a pitch deck (presentation material)?

  • Make it visual and use images.
  • Minimize text, use only few words per slide.
  • Use big font size (min 30 pix) and avoid bullet points.
  • Use consistent layout and color scheme.
  • Fine-tune your pitch for the audience and nature of the event (e.g.investor pitch is different from product pitch).
  • It’s better that audience listens and follows you instead of reading your slides.


What to emphasize in your pitch?

  • Show your commitment, results, vision and passion.
  • Emphasize how you differ from others and competitors.
  • Concentrate on the benefits instead of technical features.
  • Focus on facts, don’t hypothesize or try to predict the future.
  • Introduce strategic partnerships, if you have them.
  • Less is more! Don’t try to include everything about your fantastic idea.
  • Team and core competences, for investors team competence can weight > 50%.


How to deliver and present your pitch?

  • Keep it simple, clear, compact and understandable.
  • Be emotional and evoke feelings, since feelings are remembered.
  • Start and finish strong. Have a rocket start and remember call to action at end.
  • Tell a story if it resonates with your product or service, arouse interest.
  • Change tone, volume and tempo. Remember to breath and pause.  
  • Be yourself and deliver with your own style.
  • Stick to time limit (if max 3min, target to 2:30).


How to practice your pitch?

  • Practice, practice and practice some more!!!
  • Deliver without notes, if you might freeze then keep notes nearby.
  • Practice in front of a mirror, with your team, family & friends.
  • Film it, for example with your phone.
  • Remember  a good body language.


Teemu Kivioja introducing "how to pitch an idea, product and service" in Entrepreneur-Student Networking event.

Teemu Kivioja introducing “how to pitch an idea, product and service” in Entrepreneur-Student Networking event.

What to include in pitch and some important tips?

  1. Introduction: Wake-up your audience to gain attention. Aim for a rocket start by a strong punchline or summarize shortly your product or value proposal. It’s better to introduce yourself after this.
  2. Problem: Describe clearly what you are solving. Problems, losses with the current way/solution. 
  3. Solution: Introduce the main features of the solution. Include one or two screenshots or mock-ups. Concentrate on benefits instead of technical features.
  4. Traction: List how many registered users you have or how have you validated the idea. Include short customer testimonial if available. 
  5. Business: How you will make money with your product.
  6. Competition: Describe market and competition, how you differ, stand out and are unique.
  7. Team: Core team & competence, for investors team competence can weight > 50%.
  8. Call to action: Why you are pitching. Always ask for something. If you are asking for investment, tell how you’ll use it. 
  9. Outro & thanks: Your start & end will be remembered. Give good outro or repeat your value proposal. 

Need some more instructions how to pitch?

Some instructions didn’t fit into this blog post. We can also help your startup in creating a perfect pitch together. You can also use Tekes innovation voucher for our services. Check out our services.

Hopefully you find this article useful. Did we miss something important from the tips? -> Please comment below. 

Tecinspire has now participated to 3 pitching competitions and won 3!

Teemu Kivioja from Tecinspire

Happy pitching!

Teemu Kivioja

CEO, Tecinspire