Learn how to write a pitch in six easy steps. Plus, discover the main elements, best practices, and the most common errors.
We've all been there — sitting in front of a blank screen, the cursor blinking back at us as we struggle to start a pitch. It sometimes feels like trying to catch lightning in a bottle, doesn't it? But writing a killer pitch doesn't have to be a shot in the dark — it's more like crafting a masterpiece with the right tools and techniques.
Here, we’ll explain everything about the world of pitches, including how to write one and helpful tips and tricks to follow. We’ll also share an example to help you get started.
What is a pitch? 🎤
By definition, a pitch is a presentation or speech given to convince an audience. Think of it as your passport to grabbing attention –– it's a persuasive piece of communication tailored to ignite interest and inspire action. It's like a movie trailer for your idea, project, or business, giving your audience a glimpse into what you have to offer.
A pitch could take the form of a quick elevator speech or even a written proposal, but its purpose remains the same — to make your audience say, “Tell me more.” It's not just about what you say but also about how you say it. And the beauty of a well-crafted pitch? It turns spectators into believers and ideas into reality.
Why do you need a pitch as an Independent? 🤠
As an Independent, having a well-crafted pitch can mean the difference in securing a deal instead of ending up in a rejection pile. It allows you to effectively communicate your skills, experience, and value to potential clients. A well-written email pitch serves as a powerful tool to catch their attention, highlight your expertise, and ultimately gain new clients.
There are several types of pitches commonly used by freelancers:
- Project proposal: This is a detailed outline of understanding, approach, and pricing for specific projects.
- Service offering: This highlights benefits, unique selling propositions (USPs), and how you can help clients achieve their goals with specific services.
- Portfolio showcase: This displays your past work, best projects, and client testimonials.
- Consultation pitch: It emphasizes your expertise in a particular industry, showcasing how guidance and insights can bring value to clients’ businesses or projects.
7 main elements of a pitch 📖
The key components vary based on the kind of work you do, but all pitches should include these elements:
- A greeting with the hiring contact’s name
- An introduction to you and your work
- An example of a relevant past project
- How your experience makes you a great fit for the position
- How you can help the client reach their goals for this specific project
- The tools you use that are relevant to the opportunity (i.e., social platforms for a social media marketer, SEO for a writer, or coding languages for an engineer)
- A call-to-action (CTA), signoff, and contact information
6 steps to write a winning pitch 🪜
The perfect pitch is like a clean cover letter –– the client doesn’t look at your competitors and immediately onboards you. It’s time to put your thinking cap on, bring out the writer and editor in you, and breathe life into words. Here’s how:
1. Spark interest ✨
You need to grab the reader’s attention right from the start. Craft an engaging introduction that incites curiosity and leaves a lasting impression.
2. Showcase your expertise 🌟
Here, you highlight your skills and experience to establish credibility. Share your portfolio or achievements that demonstrate your expertise.
3. Address client needs 📢
In this step, connect your skills and experience with specific client needs. Explain how your unique abilities make you the perfect fit for their project.
4. Present value proposition 📦
Highlight how your contributions can help clients achieve their goals and solve their problems. Showcase the value you bring to the table.
5. Seal the deal 🤝
Create a clear call-to-action (CTA) that encourages the client to take the next steps. Provide options for further discussion or additional information, making it easy for them to move forward.
6. Close on a high note ⚡
End your pitch with a warm, friendly signoff that leaves a positive impression. Reiterate your enthusiasm for the opportunity and express your eagerness to connect further.
5 tips for writing your pitch 🚀
Looking to craft a pitch that will help you land clients? Here are some valuable tips to keep in mind as you write your pitch:
- Write a punchy lede: Start with a captivating hook or question to make the reader curious and eager to know more about your offer.
- Don’t let your focus dwindle: Keep your pitch to the point, communicate key points, and highlight the value you bring in simple language for easy readability.
- Be honest: Let your authentic self shine through to create a genuine connection with the reader, being friendly, approachable, and enthusiastic in your tone.
- Share your previous clients’ testimonials: Emphasize the specific results and benefits you can deliver, painting a picture of how working with you will positively impact the client’s project or business.
- Offer customization: Tailor your pitch to the individual client by referencing their specific needs, challenges, or recent achievements, making them feel important.
Most common mistakes to avoid 💪
Your pitch can either set you up for success or hinder it. And that’s why it’s vital to be aware of the most common mistakes when it comes to writing your pitch:
- Being too generic: If your pitch is the same for all prospective clients, there’s a high probability you’ll lose the client. Personalize each pitch to every client and project, showing that you understand their needs and have done your research.
- Overloading information: Overwhelming the reader with excessive information can result in the reader leaving your pitch halfway. Instead, focus on the most relevant and impactful points to maintain their attention.
- Neglecting proofreading: Typos and grammatical errors are off-putting. Take the time to proofread your pitch, and check for spelling and grammar errors.
- Lacking clarity: Pitches with complex vocabulary and jargon can sometimes irk readers. Ensure your pitch is easy to understand. Use succinct, concise, and straightforward language.
- Forgetting a CTA: Guide the reader on how they can connect with you, whether it’s scheduling a call or requesting more info.
- Avoiding follow-ups: Don’t forget to follow up after sending your pitch. A friendly and polite reminder can help keep your pitch on the recipient’s radar.
Example of a great pitch 💯
We’re certain your elevator pitch will be mind-blowing. But if you need inspiration to get started, here’s an excellent example:
"Hello [Client's Name],
I hope this message finds you well. My name is [Your Name], and I'm a seasoned freelance graphic designer passionate about creating stunning visual narratives. I understand you're looking for innovative designs for your upcoming product launch.
With over [number of years of experience] in the industry, I've successfully transformed ideas into compelling design pieces for brands like [Brand 1, Brand 2, Brand 3]. I specialize in delivering eye-catching, memorable designs that not only align with your brand identity but also resonate with your target audience.
I've admired [Client's Company Name]'s commitment to [something you appreciate about the client's company], and I believe my skills and aesthetic can add significant value to your project. I'd love to discuss how my expertise can help bring your visual story to life.
Looking forward to potentially working with you,
What happens if my pitch gets rejected? 🤔
Coping with rejection is a reality of the pitching process. Should your pitch be turned down, or you find silence on the other end, don't let despair set in! It's important to remember that every “no” is a step closer to a “yes.” Not securing one opportunity may simply be a matter of timing or a more precise fit found in another candidate. This doesn't diminish your abilities or worth — it's just a sign to dust off and dive back into the game.
If you're consistently hitting walls, consider it an opportunity to refine your approach. Double-check your applications — are they relevant to your skills, and does your portfolio accurately showcase your capabilities?
And don't hesitate to seek external insights — perhaps share your pitch and portfolio with a trusted friend or within the Contra community. Feedback can illuminate unseen weaknesses or strengths, helping you craft a pitch that radiates your true potential. Remember, rejection isn't the end — it's a launch pad for growth!
Elevate your pitch with Contra ⬆️
Crafting an effective pitch as an Independent is crucial for capturing your clients’ attention and standing out from the competition. By personalizing your pitch, highlighting your unique value, and clearly communicating how you can meet their needs, you can increase your chances of securing new projects.
Speaking of securing projects, Contra is here to help do just that. Join our community today, where passionate Independents like you are carving out their unique paths. Share your pitches with potential clients on our platform, and discover the wealth of opportunities waiting for you. Remember, every pitch is a possibility, and with Contra, you're not just pitching — you're building relationships, enhancing your craft, and shaping your future. Start your journey with Contra today.