How to fall in love with your pitch

Your pitch

Forgive me for making some assumptions here. You’re a researcher, deeply focussed on what you need to be doing to prove your thesis and change the world. So thinking about your pitch, let alone falling in love with it, is the last thing on your mind.

Let’s see if we can persuade you that a love affair with your pitch is a serious business. But first, ask yourself if you fit into any of these pitch partnerships.

The Fizzler

You pitch believing your impressive research methodology is all you need to woo a prospective partner. Before you get anywhere near the promise, your intended’s eyes glaze over and they mentally leave the room.

The Commitmentphobe

You know a powerful pitch is attractive and a long term relationship will bring with it great benefits. But preparing and practicing the right pitch seems like such hard work. You leave your potential partner waiting by the phone till the last minute, and then fail to make your intentions clear.

The Adulterer

You pitch, but you’re really on a palm-fringed beach, cocktail in hand, with someone else. It’s an empty promise, even a lie,. when you say, ‘I told you I loved you, didn’t I’?

The Narcissist

In your eyes, your pitch sparkles with genius. But it’s froth, with no substance or purpose. It will only ever be of interest to the person gazing star-struck into the mirror of your own ego.

The Nerd

Diligent, earnest and deadly serious, this pitch is in dire need of a personality transplant. No matter how valuable the content, if it’s just information, it’s a characterless text book, not a riveting story.

Derby and Joan

Comfortable and smug, it does the job. But oh my, it’s boring and few want to spend time in its company.

Ginger and Fred

You’re in a long term, sustainable partnership with your pitch. It brings you purpose, joy, and untold benefits the longer you’re together and working on your relationship.

Five steps to a healthy relationship with your pitch

Get clear on your purpose

Why are you doing what you do, who are you serving, and what difference do you believe in making for humanity? Without a clearly articulated purpose, you won’t attract and retain a relationship with those who might love why you do what you do.

Be curious about your people

Who are the people looking for exactly what you have to offer? What do they want? What keeps them awake at night? What are their issues? How can you help? How will your pitch demonstrate empathy for them?

What’s your intention

A good pitch is flexible and can accommodate different intentions. When you pitch, perhaps you just want an opportunity to follow up the relationship and not an exchange of rings! If you just want permission to meet again, make that clear.

Input your value

Your value is the insight you have into your world far beyond facts and statistics. Share this intelligently with others in your pitch, and you demonstrate how you’ve changed information into knowledge and transformed knowledge into wisdom.


A great pitch contains good stories that fascinate and inform. Science shows us that our brain activity changes when we tell and hear purpose-driven story disposing us to feel empathy and trust and a willingness to co-operate. Isn’t this what we desire in a committed relationship?

When you inject these five steps into your pitch, you can’t but help fall in love with it. It is the sum of all that you are, have experienced, and can share with the world to better humanity.

We’d love to show you how to incorporate these steps into your pitch. Have a look at our latest PowerPitch programs in Sydney and Melbourne.

Five myths about presenting or pitching your PhD research

pitching your PhD research

There’s no doubt that pitching your PhD research in person-to-person dialogue is a great form of persuasion, when you are working at high levels of intensity.

But as you mature in your research and professional life, you’ll find the need to pitch your research or present your findings to larger groups of people becomes more pressing. Can you seamlessly and with simple clarity get your complex message across?

Or will you fall into the trap in which so many highly educated and credentialed academics perish? In other words, explaining the methods of your research, the how, instead of its purpose, the why, and the outcome, or the what.

Speech isn’t the same as writing

Don’t let anyone tell you that speech writing is just writing by another name. True, it shares some characteristics of writing:

  • Ideas
  • Words
  • Communication (the art of getting people to act on your ideas).

But speaking has powers that writing lacks. It gives you tone, gesture, movement, emphasis, variety, and timing. And you don’t have to be Abraham Lincoln or Martin Luther King to learn how to prepare and deliver persuasive talks in any format or setting.

Write to be read, speak to be heard

Start with the basics—few people write like they speak, or speak like they write. Even hard-to-fathom teenagers know that a text message needs a different structure to a phone call or a face-to-face. (And if you’re anywhere near my age, be grateful!)

What makes writing and delivering a speech the second most feared fate next to death?

It’s fear itself. Would you believe though, that most of the fears that haunt speaking and speakers are just not true?

These are the five big myths about pitching your PhD research:

  1. It’s inherently stressful.
Most new experiences involve a dose of uncertainty. Remember getting on to a bike for the first time? But like millions before you, you can learn how to write your pitch and deliver it with ease, with the right tools and approach.
  2. You need an orator’s skill and courage.You just need to give the audience a little value. They don’t want perfection. They want to take away something interesting; a fact they didn’t know, or a new angle on something they did.
  3. You won’t be able to say everything you need.
The best pitches and presentations say only a little. But they say it in strong, clear, plain language. Too many speakers, especially those starting out, try to cram too much into their performance. Just a few main points are all you need. More, and you risk losing yourself and your audience.
  4. What about stage fright? 
If you’re well prepared—not over prepared—you’ll be poised, confident, and calm. You’ll have your speech either fully written out or in easy-to-follow notes as a back up. What’s the worst that can happen? You lose your place. So you apologise, and fall back on your script. Often the audience doesn’t even notice. Be honest, and few will really care. Most will actually sympathise. Some will even encourage you with applause.
  5. The audience wants to see blood.
The opposite’s true. They’ve invested time, energy, (and possibly money) in your performance. They want you to succeed. And they don’t need very much to satisfy them. No matter how small the fact or thought, if it makes them think, feel better, or feel differently, you’re a winner.

Lets dissolve those five myths about presenting or pitching your research into four secrets to writing and making a great speech:

  1. It’s only as stressful as you make it
  2. You don’t have to say everything—one main idea and two or three supporting points are enough, as long as they give value
  3. You have great value and profound stories to share
  4. Your audience wants you to succeed.

There. Who said you couldn’t pitch your all-important PhD?

Contact us here to wipe out the tension and map out the success of your next pitch or presentation challenge with our PowerPitch training for PhDs.