I was heading to the parking lot after a business networking meeting, when Andrew approached me. He’d been giving the same pitch to everyone he met for six months, and no one had referred or hired him.
“I just can’t explain what I do,” he said. “My service is terrific, but no one gets it.”
I asked him to give me his pitch.
“We specialize in risk reduction for oriented-companies with step by step strategies so they can reduce lawsuits, their number and cost of insurance claims and become more profitable. I help clients lower operating costs, increase profitability, lower the number and cost of their claims… etc.”
Andrew was leaping right into his pitch.
I told Andrew that they won’t get his value until he has their attention first. Nothing happens without focused attention.
You can get their attention, and deliver your value, by engaging the part of the brain that decides – the ancient reptilian brain, or the Lizard Brain.
Why the Lizard Brain? If you want an interested, curious, engaged response – this is the part of the brain that will give it to you.
Here are 3 techniques to get the kind of engagement you want, whenever you speak about your business.
Get Their Attention First
1. Don’t jump into your pitch. Most people launch right into:
“We specialize in risk reduction for oriented-companies with step by step strategies …”
You’ve lost them by the second sentence.
If you deliver your “menu” of professional services, in business jargon, you will sound like every other professional. It doesn’t matter what profession you’re in. All jargon turns the Lizard Brain off. And when the Lizard Brain turns off, you’ve lost your audience.
2. Surprise people. This is one of the fastest and easiest ways to “grab” attention. You have to interrupt that private, 24/7 mind chatter we all have going on. Then you can focus your audience on you.
So disrupt their thought pattern. You will have their full attention. For example:
Do you know how the ultra-wealthy protect their money in a crash?
Do you know the No. 1 reason people won’t return to a hotel?
Do you know that 95% of the people in this room are losing money on their website?
Once You Have Their Attention
3. What’s In it For Them? Your value lies in the results you produce for them. This is what they want to hear. Tell a brief story with great results.
And deliver it as soon as you have their attention. The Lizard Brain, the decision-maker, will give you 8-10 seconds before it drifts off.
Here is Andrew’s new pitch, that got him smiles, nods, congratulations, and 3 new inquiries.
“Do you know what they call the oldest lottery game in the United States?
The employee lawsuit. Let me tell you a story.
Most companies would love to add between $1- and $3 million to their sales. We show business leaders how to do that by lowering their claims and lawsuits by 63% in less than 12 months.
One of my manufacturing clients went from $300,000 in claims over a three-year period to only $28,000 in one year.
Guess what? It had the impact of adding $13 million to his sales.
I find lottery money companies didn’t know they had.
If you want to increase profitability without increasing sales, ask me about our system. Andrew Johnson, Risk Management KSB Insurance.”
Get their attention first.
Then tell a results story, in casual street talk, with hard numbers to prove “what’s in it for them.”
This simple strategy captures the attention of the decision-maker, Lizard Brain.
You can finally see the kind of interest, curiosity, intrigue, and full frontal attention you’ve been looking for.
Alert – In case you’re worried about “guaranteeing your results”, you can qualify your story by saying that you get a range of results, but that this is typical for your firm.