Ucraft Brew has done it again! We successfully made it through our second pitch for the Nevada Governor’s Cup. As I’ve discussed before, it may feel nice to finally be done with our pitch after weeks of stressing about it, but there’s still work to be done. My team and I will need to sit down soon and really go through the details of what we did well, but more importantly, how we could’ve done better. It’s about continually improving the process and making sure that each time we give our pitch, it’s better than the last.
“Almost like a good comedian, a good presentation needs to come out of the gate with a punch. It’s what grabs people’s attention.”
Having gone through the process twice now, I’ve made a few observations which might hopefully help someone else down the road.
- Don’t be afraid to interact with judges (or investors). More so than our last pitch, my team and I really had the opportunity to interact with the judges and get some solid feedback. In addition to this, we also got ideas, which we feel will be invaluable to helping get this off the ground. After our pitch was over, we were able to pivot into an open discussion about different ideas the judges had to make Ucraft Brew flourish. It almost felt like the judges were also team members kicking out big ideas they have for the business. I believe much of this had to do with our disposition relative to the last pitch. To put it simply, we were less nervous than the first go around, and I think that’s just something that goes along with more practice.
- Timing is everything. Like many other things in life, timing is very important. If I could go back and change anything in my part of the pitch, it would be how I timed my words. In this pitch, I really focused on slowing things down and emphasizing certain points of the presentation, but as a result, I went a little too slow initially which made the presentation feel slow out of the gate. Almost like a good comedian, a good presentation needs to come out of the gate with a punch. It’s what grabs people’s attention. I don’t think it hurt me too bad overall, but it’s something to improve on.
- Check, check, and recheck. The difference between a good pitch and a great pitch is all in the details. As meticulously as my team went through our slide deck for our first pitch, we failed to go through it once more before this presentation. This led to one big change that was needed that we failed to make. Thankfully we had the wherewithal to quickly recover from our mistake, and it was a good laugh at the same time, which lighted up the mood a bit. Still, this is something that would have been easily caught had we just checked once more before giving our presentation.
Overall, this was a phenomenal experience. Whether we win anything or not, we got a lot out of talking with the judges and it will only help to build and improve upon the business model for Ucraft Brew. The lesson here is to make every pitch, presentation, or spiel a learning experience, regardless of how well you did.
Got advice for knocking it out of the park with a pitch? Please share in the comments below!