In investment sales, there’s a huge focus on getting the meeting, often at the expense of crafting a strong pitch. That oversight represents a critical misstep.
Anytime you make a pitch, there’s a lot at stake – and not just for you. Every time an allocator recommends an investment product, they’re taking a career risk. Every time you sit down to pitch an investment strategy, you’re asking them to invest in a product that, if it performs poorly, could cost them their job.
That’s why the pitch is pivotal. For the institutional investor sitting across from you, no is the safest answer. It’s your job to make them understand your strategy at the deepest level possible.
An ace sales pitch can be a true game-changer. It’s a differentiator that has the power to communicate all the information a buyer needs in an engaging and memorable way. These six tips can help you craft that next-level sales pitch.
1. Think Narrative, Not Just Numbers
People are naturally drawn to stories. Your pitch should be framed as a story, a narrative you tell about your investment strategy to help buyers better understand it. Yes, institutional investors need numbers, but they also need the story of how you got to them. A narrative provides context and a linear structure to the data.
2. Skip the Jargon
People who are passionate about and well-versed in what they do often use jargon. But by using it, you risk losing your audience. Research shows that even experts are turned off by jargon. Carefully choose words that will animate your story in a memorable and easy-to-understand way.
3. Take Control
Use the opening minutes to take control of the message. Craft a clear and concise statement about what you do, covering the 15 to 20 questions the allocator needs answered. Now you’ve moved the conversation forward. Rather than asking about basics, they can focus on questions that will advance the sales process.
4. Bring the Story to Life
Try to bring your story to life in an engaging and memorable way. Carefully choose words that add color, character and depth. This is your teaser and the preview of what’s to come. It should make a buyer excited about what’s next and fearful about missing out.
5. Highlight Benefits, Not Features
Most salespeople focus on features – their investment process and how they created it. But buyers respond better to benefits. Think about your strategy in terms of the problems it solves. A benefit can be as simple as it reduces risk and increases return or it gives you zero correlation to the market.
6. Maintain Control of the Story After the Meeting
Follow-up is critical. It allows you to continue the narrative beyond the meeting, advance the story and introduce new elements. The more personal and contextualized your follow-up, the better. Provide content on particular areas of interest and address specific questions from the meeting.
Creating an effective pitch can be an imposing task. But it’s a worthwhile endeavor. Strong messaging has the power to pique a buyer’s interest, make them comfortable with your strategy and give them the confidence and enthusiasm to move the conversation forward.
Through narrative, you can control the story being told about your strategy and the words used to describe it, and significantly increase the probability of making the sale.