How to Create a Great Pitch: Present a Problem and Then Solve It

Category: Writing and Public Speaking Created: Monday, 12 December 2016 Written by Boogie Boydon

How to Create a Great Pitch - Present a Problem then Solve It

We all know that anyone who steps up to a podium would like to give his audience the best speech he can. We also know that achieving that depends on a lot of factors. But you can achieve a greater chance of meeting this objective by focusing on a factor that you can control - your script.

The goal of any well crafted speech is to guide your listeners through a journey of knowledge discovery. It is leading them from a point of not knowing to a point of being able to understand. But the journey needs to be captivating as well to ensure that your audience follow you throughout the journey with enthusiasm and excitement. Otherwise, you might just be standing there thinking your audience is glued to their seats without realizing that they are just waiting for the first opportunity to bolt out of their chairs. Or worse, they might end up still glued to their seats well after your talk but only because they have fallen asleep.

Having said this, obviously a great talk is one that is compelling. It is one that captures the imagination of your audience because they can immediately relate to what you are saying. One great formula for achieving this is when you present a problem that your audience can relate to and then slowly unveil a solution to it through your talk.

Right from your opening lines, walk your listeners through a realization that every one of you in the room share a common difficulty. Make it as personal as you can so that that bond of empathy is established between you and your audience. Identify the common "pain points" associated with the problem. Pain points are typically of the form "I find it difficult to ... because of ..." or "I hope there is something that can be done about ... because right now what is happening is ..." Once you've made your point, your listeners will all be in one accord with you in the desire to find a solution for the problem you presented. At this point, you may start to unveil your proposed answer and you can do this in three parts.

The first part of the solution presentation is to describe how the solution will look like. You will not yet identify what the solution is but just speak about specific abilities and capabilities of the solution that can directly address the pain points presented earlier. If the solution is in the form of a product or a service, this part will visualize the features of that product or service and how those can resolve the given problem.

The next part will reinforce the visualization achieved in the previous part. Features can only get your audience's interest to a certain level. Presenting situational benefits is what will heighten their anticipation of knowing what the solution is. It will be more of the form, "When you are doing ..., this (product of service) will make it (easier, faster, more efficient) ..." This will paint for your audience concrete images of how they will benefit from the solution and will make them want to know what it is as soon as possible.

You then close your speech by giving them concrete actionable things they can do to make the solution a reality. You unveil what the product or service is all about and you give them specific details of how they can avail it. What started as passive listeners will now become action-takers and you will be seen as a valuable partner in solving their problem.

 

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