Pitch like you give a damn

Today, I want to talk about pitching your creative work and presenting.

Because I think it’s something that junior copywriters and art directors should be improving on as time goes on. As an ad student, I’m sure you worked hard on crafting cool ideas and edgy headlines or that cool app to get hired. Once you get hired, you have to be able to present your ideas internally all the time. (Did I mention that you have to present to clients too?)

One thing for sure, is that your presentation should never look, feel, or sound like one of your past college assignments in Marketing 101. Huge Fail. In my point of view, a good copywriter should be an awesome presenter. So, I’d like to encourage all of the creatives out there (all levels), who may cringe when it comes to pitching. Everyone should play to win. (Metaphorically speaking)


Here’s 8 tips that I found to be true from my own experience.

1. Know your audience and tone.  Put yourself in the place of the audience you’re presenting to.. What do you like about presentations? What do you find interesting and what do you find boring? Establish a feeling and maintain it.

2. Engage from the start. Hit them with something funny, sad, etc. in the beginning that resonates with the brand. This part is kind of like setting a serve in volleyball.

3. Keep it Simple. Hold on to what is absolutely essential to your pitch and cut out the rest. Give them what they asked for and include what your client needs.

4. Never wing it.  Practice makes perfect. Create an outline, memorize it, and throw it out the window. Speak with clarity and enthusiasm and don’t rush through it.

5. Visuals and Copy.  Avoid filling your presentation with numbers, facts, and charts. Instead, use a combination of images and short crafted messages that tell a compelling story. You should never be reading from the slides.

6. Organization. Arrange your presentation in a strategic manner. It should all flow together like the scene of a movie.

7. Teamwork.  Present your own work whenever possible. Sometimes you’ll have to present other team members ideas during a pitch. Collaborate. Remember, that’s the point of the pitch is to win the client over with a solution as a team. (Remember, don’t contradict your peers, this isn’t a competition)

8. Be yourself. Pitch like you give a damn.  It shows that you’re passionate and capable of being a leader. (Which always helps out when agency reviews come around)

Also, be sure to read Louis Sullivan’s Hey Whipple Squeeze This and The Art Of The Pitch by Peter Coughter.

Dear Andre


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