If you are like me, you write atleast one pitch a day. To prospects, sponsors, influencers, investors, and bloggers.
I am so much into pitch writing that once I helped a friend pitch her dog to her landlord because she was looking to rent an apartment in New York City with pet restrictions:-)
But the one thing I always remind myself and my clients is that pitching isn’t about selling; it is about asking if there is an interest in what is being offered or available.
Pitch is an ask. It doesn’t need to be grand; it could simply be an invitation to have lunch together or a request to conduct an informational interview.
The famous and profitable relationship of Chris Guillebeau and J.D. Roth wouldn’t have developed had Chris, reader of J.D.’s blog: Get Rich Slowly , not asked him if he could have lunch with him on his visit to Portland, where J.D. lives.
Besides them, there are several other amazing entrepreneurs who grew their businesses with a simple ask.
Asking is very important. And the best part is that, sometimes, you ask without realizing that you are actually asking.
When you say I love you , you are exploring the possibility: what could be, and should we?
Ask is a proposal for consideration, not a request for commitment. When you propose or pitch, keep this in mind. Don’t pressure others with your ask; instead, allow them the opportunity to know you and what you bring to the table.
And, be classy about it. Remind yourself that an ask doesn’t come with guarantees. But if you don’t try, you will never know what it could have been.
I don’t want to ever live with regrets; therefore, I always ask. Sure, I fail at times. But, I wouldn’t have been able to achieve so many things had I not asked.
Had I not cold-called Enrique Yeves, Chief of TV Production Section at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, I wouldn’t have earned the chance to work on the promotional video package for World Summit 2005.
Had I not reached out to Edie Hilliard , one of radio’s legends and a member of The Women’s Media Center Advisory Council, I would have probably never written opinion pieces for Women’s Media Center . In fact, my freelance career would have never begun had I not emailed Jennifer Thurston at Women’s eNews .
I believe – and I tell everyone – that if you don’t try, you will live with that what if regret.
So, don’t let your inhibitions control you.
I have five core beliefs that help me reach out to whoever I want to. In case you are interested, here they are:
You are good enough . Rejection doesn’t mean anything.
Imagine what would have happened had:
Steven Spielberg given up on his filmmaking dreams after he was rejected from film school…three times.
Oprah Winfrey quit television when she was fired from her job as a television reporter because she was told she was not fit for television.
Walt Disney not believed in himself when he was fired by a newspaper editor on the ground that he lacked imagination and didn’t have good ideas.
So, you see, rejection comes to us all. Sometimes, repeatedly. But that doesn’t mean we are not good.
There is no one else like you — and there can never be. Never let someone’s stature determine yours. Do not let their titles and designations impede your ability to communicate with them.
Who you are pitching to is also a human being, not a robot . Communication is between people, not robots. Once you see others (no matter what their accomplishments are) as human beings like yourself — with hopes, aspirations, and insecurities – you become a better communicator.
Everybody starts somewhere . There are people who are born to achieve, but they are not achievers by birth. They start somewhere at some point. Similarly, you also have to start…from here on out.
There is no better day than today . Today is the best day, and right now is the best time. Make this your mantra for life, and you’ll see big things happening for you.
What if, why not, and so what? Whenever I am confused whether or not to say or express something, I always ask myself these 3 questions: What if I don’t? Why should I not? And so what if they say no? You see, I never let ego stand in the way.
You shouldn’t too.
Give it a shot, give it a chance. If it works out, great. If not, on to the next opportunity. Life is full of them.