Growth5 Blog

Monday, July 27, 2009

Context In 60 Seconds or Less: Go

Listening to entrepreneurs talk about their business can be extremely frustrating at times. Same goes for sales people and anyone else who is pitching something. It's because they start pitching at the beginning of their story, career, idea, life, etc... Those that "pitch" well have something in common: they lead with the punchline.

When you come to sell us something, as listeners we are constantly trying to make connections with what you are saying to what we know in order to understand the true context of the conversation. Once the context has been established, we have a much better chance of deciding if it is something we want.

If you don't get to the context quickly, we may have already decided we don't have the time to connect the dots for you. That might sound harsh, but it is true. If you are an entrepreneur, your pitch gives us an idea of how successfully (or not) you will be at selling your product/idea to the rest of the world.

The dictionary defines context this way:
the circumstances that form the setting for an event, statement, or idea, and in terms of which it can be fully understood and assessed
Lead with who you are, what you do, why you do it, and what you want. This can easily be done in 60 seconds or less. You'll be surprised at how much you can say in 60 seconds. You should practice. If your watch doesn't have a second hand, you can use the stopwatch on your iPhone.

If you can nail the context of why you are in the room in the first 60 seconds, we can spend the next 14 or 29 minutes efficiently drilling down further into what you are offering in a productive way.

Related: Prepping for a First Meeting with a VC

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