Posts Tagged ‘Clients’

How pitch songs can help you win

Posted on: July 14th, 2010 by Fransgaard 1 Comment

Tonight, I’m gonna have myself a real good time…
I feel alive and the world it’s turning inside out Yeah!
I’m floating around in ecstasy
So don’t stop me now don’t stop me
‘Cause I’m having a good time having a good time…

When I go to bed the last thing I remember is music (last night Who made Who) and the first thing I hear in my head in the morning is another song (this morning 10000 Nights Of Thunder).

Music has many recreational uses. One business use is The Pitch Song!

How the pitch song helps you

The pitch song’s main purpose is to give you an appropriate soundtrack of confidence.

The pitch song will make you smile, dance, sing while you make the final preparation and do the final rehearsal in front of the bathroom mirror before heading out to the pitch itself. It will get you into a good and relaxed mood which is key to controlling the otherwise stressful situation a pitch is by nature.

The client

The reason why I wrote “appropriate” above is that whatever song you choose will affect your behaviour so choosing Smack My Bitch Up when pitching in front of a law company may not be ideal.

On the other hand choosing I’m Too Sexy will help diffuse any serious or dry atmosphere and give the lawyers a sense of you being fun to work with and the project being an interesting break from their day job.

This may be a good point to mention that you should not under any circumstances hum or sing the pitch tune it should all be in your head… a little dance move here and there doesn’t hurt though ;-)

So we’ve established that pitch songs:

  • Give you confidence
  • Make you relax
  • …and can help convey how fun you and your project is going to be

But what about your colleagues?

Your colleagues

The best possible time to suggest a pitch song is when everybody are most stressed and close to getting into a fist fight (well… we all want to win, right?)

Suggest it like it is something super serious. Make a point of sounding as serious as everybody else. They will look at you as if you are mad. It is working, Don’t stop. Demand that we all spend a substantial amount of time choosing the pitch theme.

Ofcourse this won’t (and shouldn’t) happen, but it will make people calm down and even laugh by providing some unexpected distraction. All good. The pitch song is already doing its job even before it is chosen.

Now that everybody has laughed a bit you can get back to work… but don’t let go of the pitch tune! Start lobbying for a song. Don’t be afraid to use surveymonkey.com but keep it simple; 3 songs max and always have a field for “other suggestions”.

When you come to rehearsing your pitch bring up the pitch tune topic again before you start and see if you can get everybody to quickly agree on a tune; if not take charge and suggest one yourself.

Choose a song that fits your team.  A song with equal balance of cheesiness and cool; one that everybody can sing along to in the pub (whether they want to admit it or not) but also one that doesn’t hurt the cool kid’s image.

I personally find that The Final Countdown works. Either everybody literally starts singing OR they all quickly agree on another song. Problem solved either way.

What just happened? Let’s take it step by step:

  1. Everybody sits down to do one of the most uncomfortable tasks; rehearsing in front of your colleagues.
  2. Bringing the pitch song to the table will focus everybody on this seemingly random subject.
  3. By the time everybody has agreed a pitch song (or agreed to dismiss the idea) they will collectively have agreed on something; they are essentially on the same page ready to present in unity!

And ofcourse there’s the fourth bonus point:

If everybody agrees on a pitch song will put you all in the same frame of mind and mood when you step into the pitch arena.  And it shows. The client will get a feel of a united team that can and will work together.


Relax

I’ll end this post with a commercial I think more than anything conveys what you and your team will look like when you enter the pitch arena with the winning attitude supported by your perfect pitch soundtrack:

Selling social media with less scary words

Posted on: May 25th, 2010 by Fransgaard 1 Comment

I read some user feedback the other day. 

Some users thought forums where place for geeks, pointless and time wasters… even though they may never have used a forum themselves. Equally Wiki was seen as something techy and geeky… again not necessarily based on any experience.

But they did recognise the words so it’s very much a case of a little knowledge can be more dangerous than no knowledge.

I concluded an interesting point revolving around social media; New words scare people.

This made me look back and review how my approach to selling social media has changed and yes, I do tend to avoid any social media related words these days.

Why? Because clients are ordinary people. Many of them have just recently gotten used to the fact they have a website or an e-newsletter. Many of them pride themselves with having finally learned to use the content management system, and so they should be! It is not their full-time job to work with the Internet on a daily basis like it is for web professionals.

My philosophy has essentially become: Names aren’t important so stick with words people know, preferably from the real word to take it away from that scary thing called the Internet.

So I was thinking back on what words I’ve used recently to describe social media and here are some I could remember using:

  • Twitter, RSS = News stream like the scrolling banners use on TV news or Latest News or Alerts similar to your e-newsletter
  • Facebook or LinkedIn groups = personal/ professional interest groups (some times a client will recognise this as a forum which is great as it gives some psychic credit to the client)
  • Wiki = Library or Collection or Resource centre
  • Blog = Diary or Newspaper 
  • Commenting = Open letter to the editor/author
  • Sharing = Word of mouth

This approach does not assume clients are stupid and most of them will have heard the correct terms, but to many it is all new and, more importantly, untried stuff and when push comes to shove clients will invest their money in things they know work, especially in the current economic climate. Giving them a reference point to something they know helps them visualise the potential and see beyond the words.