I get a lot of pitches from authors who want to be speakers. They’re excited about their book and want to hit the “circuit” and touch as many audiences as possible. I get it and respect that. But in these pitches there are a few things that are almost ALWAYS the same – which is why I delete half of the requests. I’m sharing this because in our own efforts to promote something we love, we often forget the thoughtfulness required to really engage a potential “yes” person.
Here’s what they do that totally turns me off – and although I’m using myself as an example, I just mean to say this applies to the media, other founders, conference organizers…anyone who offers a “broadcast” channel in some way (and many of you are being pitched the same way and will relate!)
– They don’t bother to find out my name despite that it’s on the website.
– They refer to the company as SmartyPeople even though the brand is clearly SMARTY.
– They offer sample tips on what they’ll cover and what the audience will leave with, but it has nothing to do with what we do (for instance they talk about changing corporate culture when we are a group of small business owners.)
THEN….this is my favorite part – they suggest times and dates they are available to talk to me! This is all before they’ve ever exchanged ONE single email with me – the person they want to influence. The whole thing just feels like spam; totally under-researched and impersonal…
We all want to influence someone. So how do we do it and make it work?!?
1. Look at the website, about the Founder, and the audience before you pitch. If any of those things are not a match, find a connection – or don’t pitch at all.
2. Tell them what they’re doing that you think is cool – or tell the person how you found them. If there’s no connection or attention paid, it feels like spam.
3. Do not suggest times to talk before someone has even replied! Yikes! Let’s have an email date before we invest in dinner, ya know?
Our ability to be conscious and truly mindful of what we are offering and to whom has a direct influence on the results. Don’t be in a hurry; be in “the zone.” The zone means you’ve done the research, written something well and can almost surely count on some type of response – which is better than a “delete” or a poor impression.