Pitching Innovations; When Spoilers Are a Good Thing

Creators of fiction take great care to avoid leaks, from extra security guards hired to watch over the printing of a much anticipated new book to shooting multiple alternative endings for a TV series so that even the talent doesn't know what happens.

But for entrepreneurs, developers and marketers who are trying to pitch an innovative new product, technology, idea or whatever, this is the worst way to approach a presentation. Perhaps in movies you can spring a complete surprise on someone in a literal elevator pitch, and they decide to greenlight it on the spot. Reality is different. People normally distrust new ideas the first time that they see them, but over time they come to accept and then like the new idea simply by being exposed to it.

There is an important lesson in this idea. If people need time to get used to a new idea before they accept it then the effective influencer takes care to make sure that this happens. Long before you ask someone to decide about your great new idea you should make sure that they already know about it, preferably for at least a few weeks but less will also work if necessary.

You can introduce decision makers to ideas in advance through different channels. One approach is to mention your idea during informal conversations, another is to write about your idea in channels you control yourself, in blogs, in media -- wherever you think that the target audience might be available. You can also look for speaking opportunities where you can be getting people used to your ideas before you make a direct pitch.

When this preparatory work is done well, when you finally make your formal pitch the target audience already knows about it, they are familiar with the idea and they are more open to considering it. During the preparation work you also had time to respond to questions, doubts and critiscism, making your pitch even stronger.

Lectures, Workshops, Coaching and Writing

For lectures, interactive workshops, one-to-one coaching and writing about how to communicate innovate ideas more effectively contact Andrew Hennigan on speaker@andrewhennigan.com or 0046 73 089 44 75.


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