Pitch Perfect(ly)

by Jeff Gadway
on February 28

Pitching your business to job-seekers in 3-minutes (or less). 

A stage. A microphone. 3 minutes. If that’s all you had to capture the interest of a room full of job-seekers – a captive audience who have come here specifically to learn about your company – what would you say? How do you stand out? The answer might surprise you.

At a recent job fair hosted by Communitech, a number of pitchers found themselves in that very position. While the companies couldn’t have been more different, after a few pitches they all start sounding remarkably unremarkable and the audience’s attention turned to Instagram. Here’s a taste:

“We’re the leading cloud platform/app/marketplace for ________.” Another one?

“We’re in growth mode.”  So is everyone

“We’ve got a great culture.” Great, get in line.

“We’ve got great product market fit.” Let me consult my startup dictionary.

“We’re looking for talented motivated people who want to make a contribution.” So is everyone.

And then someone gets up and opens their pitch by asking a simple question.

“How many people recently watched a red sports car get put into space?”

75% of the room puts their hand up, intrigued and re-engaged.

“Science fiction just happened in my lifetime,” says the speaker. “But what does this have to do with KW and our company?”. The pitcher then connects the dots between a recent Space-X milestone, the rise of satellites orbiting the planet and the need for someone to make sense of the mounds of data they’ll be beaming back down to earth. “At our company, we put that data together.”

The room was hooked. Not surprisingly, there was a lineup at their booth after the pitches ended.

So what makes a good company sales pitch to would-be job seekers? Maybe a better question is, ‘what do job seekers really want to learn about your company?’ In this case, the audience literally told us.

When one speaker was struggling to get his scripted pitch out, the audience (in an effort to help him find his sea legs) started shouting out questions. As is so often the case in marketing, we need to listen to our audience and answer the questions they care about.

What did they want to learn?

What gets you excited about getting up and going to work in the morning?

What does a day in the life look like?

What will someone find at your company that you won’t find anywhere else?

How do you make people’s lives better?

What characteristics are you looking for?

Notice the difference?

They aren’t asking what the company made, whether they are in hyper-growth, or whether they serve catered lunches and have beer on tap. They couldn’t care less about that.

They want a picture of what their life would look like as part of the team, in pursuit of a mission –  not a picture of your fancy office.

They want a human answer; a personal story – not a scripted pitch read word for word from behind the podium.

They want to feel your passion – not just hear that you want passionate, driven people.

Whether you’re pitching to the job-seekers that will help build your business or customers who will fuel your growth, keep these three things in mind to build a stronger, more compelling pitch


If you’re looking for help with crafting and telling better stories, or building a sales pitch that cuts through the noise, check out our upcoming Marketing Masterclass workshops in Waterloo, Ontario.

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