23 October 2006

Use a 15SecondPitch

Having morphed once again to being a grant writer (but with a decidedly more trenchant focus), I was woolgathering for a more effective approach to marketing My services.

I use "The Grant Planner" as My nom de oeuvre and I created a weekly compendium of Federal grant opportunites called The Grant Planner Report, available by e-mail. But I felt I needed a better "hook", so I did what I usually do when searching for practical ideas: I searched My computer.

Over the past decade, I've collected tons of files and bookmarks on a wide variety of subjects, marketing being one of the biggies. And I rediscovered a site I'd written about in 2005, called 15SecondPitch.com. Its creator, Laura Allen, helps you improve your marketing focus and overall level of response by having you create, polish and deliver a 15-second pitch. The pitch is not a flabby "commercial": it's a vibrant, unique, benefit-oriented idea that calls to action.

Consider the power of a sales message contained in a 15-second sound bite... You can easily toss it out dozens of times a day and that alone should help improve your sales results because you make more attempts. Sales is a game of numbers: the more quality attempts, the more sales you make. Simple.

In 15 seconds, you can not only engage a potential prospect, but qualify him or her, too. Freelancers often waste a lot of time pursuing "dead end clients," those that seem to be interested, but will never really commit. With a polished pitch, you can move from "Are you interested?" to "What exactly do you want from Me?" in under a minute. That's the qualification process in a nutshell, in seconds rather than hours or days.

There's even a trademarked Pitch Wizard on the 15SecondPitch website to help you draft your pitch, then open a free account to share it with others in the network. And with free weekly tips, Laura keeps you focused on improving what could be the most important tool in your marketing kit.

Considering the economic miasma We're headed for beginning next month, it means more now than ever to have a clear, precise and valuable message to deliver to enhance your marketability and sales potential. If you're an employee, it matters more, because your security and financial future are not in your hands, but in someone else's. (Freelancers have--or should have--multiple income streams. If they don't, they are even more vulnerable than employees.) Unless you can easily reinforce your value--no matter where you are--you will struggle more in the coming months.

So hop on over to Laura's place and take 5 minutes to create a 15-second pitch. They could very well turn out to be your most important 5 minutes of 2006.

The Jenius Has Spoken.


Laura Allen

Patti Smith realized what a big deal it was that CBGB was closing when she picked up the New York Times and saw a picture of herself, on stage at the final show, above the fold, on the front page of the paper. For me, I realized that maybe there was something to this 15SecondPitch idea when I was mentioned by the Jenius today! Thanks for making my day, Gil!

GCSchmidt said...

Laura, the pleasure was mine, too. Your focus and developments into making 15 seconds pay off handsomely are not only helpful to Me, but they are a godsend to those of Us who find self-marketing a tad tawdry. I am now your fan and will make sure to keep improving My pitch until it delivers like clockwork. Thanks!