Since I started my business, I’ve eaten a lot of breakfasts! For those of you that are also frequent business networkers, this scene is probably familiar.
Someone stands up to give their 60-second pitch and starts with:
“Hi, I’m xxxx from xxxx Limited. We are a family-owned company that has been in business since 1985 providing high-quality services to clients in xxxx and the surrounding areas.”
They spend the first 20 seconds talking about their business, by which time many people have lost interest, especially if there are 30 or 40 people in the room and this pitch is number 27.
And yet, this information is beneficial. Mentioning the fact that the business has been trading for nearly thirty years is a good way to build credibility, for example.
So when should you say it?
Well, giving a pitch at a networking meeting is just another form of marketing. To ensure that you get the best results from any marketing activity, follow the acronym A.I.C.D.A. (this stands for Attention, Interest, Credibility, Desire, Action).
The point here is that before you can build credibility with your audience, you must capture their attention and their interest. Do this by explaining what makes your business different and how they can benefit from your products or services.
Telling a story is also a good way to generate interest and demonstrate to the audience what you can do for them (or someone they know).
Only then should you try to build credibility, by (for example) talking about your qualifications, experience, clients, awards or how long you have been in business.
It’s difficult to stand out from all the other businesses out there, whether at a breakfast meeting or in any other form of marketing, but AICDA provides a tried and tested structure for success.