We've all heard of pitch competitions in relation to startups. The pressure is intense and these infant business ideas often have a small window to demonstrate their ability to sell their product (and their company) to would-be investors. But the pitch isn't new and it isn't limited to startups. Mission-driven organizations who have mastered the pitch are recruiting more dollars, volunteers, partners, and investors than those who haven't for the very same reasons: You have a small window to sell your cause.
Too often, a pitch looks like this:
We tell people what we do or recite our mission statement rather than sharing the impact we have.
The small nonprofit "provides free mental health services to low-income, uninsured adults" instead of "relieving debilitating mental health symptoms for those most at risk and most in need so they can get back to work and take care of their families".
The community foundation "pools donations and expertise through coordinated grants to improve the quality of life of Sunshine City" rather than "catalyzing ideas into action for good to change our neighborhoods, schools, and community for the better".
How much more compelling is the following pitch?
How many mailings did you receive between November 1st and January 1st asking for a donation? Now consider the number of emails, tweets, websites, texts and other forms of media vying for the attention of your would-be donors.
If you don't think your in sales, think again. Mastering persuasive communication skills, especially in sharing your impact with potential donors, board members, or partners, is critical in this digital era.
Let's get the juices flowing with some ideas from Dan Pink, master of motivation and author of Drive and To Sell is Human:
Take the next step RIGHT NOW. Share your own fast pitch in the comments.