Wednesday, May 7, 2014

You all know I attended the FabLab Bohol Symposium recently and that we got to pitch about StartupWeekend Bohol to the FabLab organizers and participants. Here's what I've learned about (teeth-shatteringly) pitching to a room packed with experienced intellectuals about an event you're organizing. Most of these is just common sense but that's pretty hard to remember when a hundred pairs of wide, judging, bespectacled eyes are staring at you seeing every gross trickle of your condensed, thick sweat rush from your wide forehead to your sweaty, tiny palms.

1) Make your pitch quick and concise. Get to the point and prepare your pitch. Make sure you get everything down as fast and as clearly as possible. Most of these people don't usually have the luxury of time so get it through you head that they won't wait for you.

2) Bring yourself with confidence. Nobody want to see a slouching speaker, nor even want to hear his unsure laugh and "umms" and "errs" echoing through the auditorium. Suck that stomach in, keep that back straight and hold that head high. You mean business!

3) Talk about the event as briefly and clearly as you can. Again related to the first tip, talk in a slow, clear way so everyone gets what you're saying. Make your explanations short and to the point.

4) Tell them who are your target participants. Maybe the event isn't for everyone in the room so reach out to the ones that are there that you want to invite. Let them know who you need to make the talk more personal to those interested and maybe, if you've explained well enough, they might refer (or wrangle in) their friends to you.

5) Event details like venue, time and registration fees (if any) must be mentioned at least twice in your pitch. I mean I guess that's self-explanatory. Most people, because of nerves, forget to tell their audience who to go to or what site to visit in case they have any questions or if they want to register to your event. Don't leave them hanging. You're loosing valuable talent.

6) Quickly run through future or preparatory event related to your main event. If you have an orientation about the main event the week after, let them know. If you have a mentor/organizer open to skype calls on questions about the event on a specific time, let them know. Do so really quickly before you end your pitch. Just to let the audience know this event is continuous and there's much in store for them if they sign up to your network.

And that's it for me. If you have any suggestions please let me know, I'm no expert at this, I'm just sharing what I learned haha Mostly for my own future reference. I'm looking forward to more opportunities where I can step up and learn more. Especially more events I can attend (so I can rave and blog about it). Hope I was helpful to someone out there by sharing this :)

Horrible screenshot of me pitching in SWC3. 
Wasn't able to execute Tip #2 very well, I recall haha.


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