Sales Pitch

10 Sales Pitch Mistakes costing you sales

A sales pitch can be completely undermined by some elementary but deadly mistakes. It requires a significant investment of time, energy, and effort to get the opportunity to present your sales pitch to your ideal clients. And, to undermine the opportunity to get the sale by making avoidable but deadly mistakes is going to cost you money and hold back your career.


There are ten deadly mistakes that you need to avoid when delivering your sales presentation.


Sales Killing Mistake 1: No Introductions

It is a basic common courtesy to introduce yourself and ensure that everyone in the room knows each other. It is arrogant and presumptuous to assume that everyone knows who you are.

A simple act of introducing yourself and others puts the room at ease. This allows everyone to focus on your pitch – and not become preoccupied with who they are sitting next to.


Sales Killing Mistake 2: No Rapport

An introduction is only the first step in the process of establishing rapport and building a connection with each person in the room. The next mistake that you need to avoid is the mistake of not building and deepening the rapport with your clients sitting through your pitch.


There are several ways that rapport can be established and strengthened over the course of the pitch. Before the pitch even starts you should be in the room, setup and waiting for clients to arrive. As they walk into the room “meet and greet” them – shaking each persons hand if possible.


In your pitch there are several ways that you can increase the depth of connection. This is by utilising appropriate terminology for the clients industry or organisation, by using the right examples to highlight your understanding of their problem and the solution, and by sharing your personal story. A well crafted and though out personal story allows you to build trust, and demonstrate that you have the experience and credibility to assist your clients to solve the problems that they are facing.



Sales Killing Mistake 3: No clear purpose

Every pitch needs to have a clear purpose. Without understanding what you want to achieve with the pitch the likelihood that you will be successful is very low.


You need to understand upfront what the purpose of your pitch is. Is it to make the sale? Position yourself as credible expert? To get a follow up meeting with the decision maker?


When you know exactly what you want to achieve with your sales pitch you can tailor you content to better achieve your aims.



Sales Killing Mistake 4: Lack of individuality

You need to be your authentic self when delivering your pitch. Don’t fall into the trap of mimicking your mentors or hero’s style when delivering your pitch. This will impede your ability to deliver your presentation naturally. Your clients will establish a better connection with you when you are your authentic self. In the process you will be more memorable as there will be no one can deliver a pitch like you!

Your individuality will make you memorable and authentic!


Sales Killing Mistake 5: Ignorant of the pains being felt

To avoid this mistake you must make a concerted effort to know your market and the experiences of the customers that you are pitching to. Across an industry there may be common challenges and pain points, but these will be experienced and described slightly differently by each potential client in the industry. You must avoid being careless and investigate every challenge and pain point before proposing a solution. A pain point missed is a potential upsell passed up.


Investigate every challenge your clients have and you will be able serve them better, make more sales, and earn more money in the process.



Sales Killing Mistake 6: Being Unprepared

The better you know the pains felt by your clients individually the better you can share your solution to them. However the solution needs to be shared with them in respect of their circumstance and language. If you are unprepared for your sales presentation you will not be able to tailor your solution, the examples and testimonials, and the language you use to reflect the specifics of your client.

A generic sales pitch will force the client to mentally interpret what you are saying to their situation. They will get it wrong and there will be misunderstandings – and NO sale!

The more tailored the pitch the higher the likelihood you will make the sale.


Sales Killing Mistake 7: Talking too much and not adapting

It is cliché to say that we have two ears and one mouth for a reason and you should use them in that ratio. Your sales pitch will be most effective when you are listening and adapting rather than talking and lecturing.


As you are delivering your pitch you should be monitoring the body language and eye contact of your clients. And if they are exhibiting signs of confusion, frustration, or concern then you need to alter the direction of your pitch. An easy way to avoid this situation is to “check in” with them on a regular basis and ask “does this make sense?”


By showing concern for your audience you will garner their trust and they will reward you.



Sales Killing Mistake 8: Being Boring

As part of your preparation for your pitch you need to consider how you will keep your audience engaged and interested for the duration of your presentation. Whether you are delivering your pitch in person or on a webinar the concepts remain the same. You need to keep your pitch engaging for the ear, engaging for the eyes, and engaging mentally. To achieve this look at personalising your language and ensure that each client in the room feels like you are talking only to them, ensure your PowerPoint presentation is visually appealing with plenty of images and multimedia, and ask plenty of questions and wait for a response from your audience.


To avoid being boring challenge yourself to always ensure your sales presentation passes the Ears, Eyes, and Fingers test.



Sales Killing Mistake 9: Not presenting a custom solution

Your solution might be generic across all of your clients. Whether is a generic service, such as lawn mowing, or you supply standard widgets when you present your solution to your clients you must describe it to them as though it’s a custom solution. How? By referencing back to their particular issues and challenges.


When you describe it in relation to their unique situation you can highlight how your widget or standard service will relieve the pain they are experiencing today and show them how much better off they will be after you have mowed their lawns, supplied your widget, or “insert your solution here”.


Sales Killing Mistake 10: Losing Nerve when closing

This is an area where many sales are lost. The sales pitch, until this point, has been delivered with vigour, energy, and enthusiasm. The sharing of valuable and actionable content is mentally easy as you are providing great value. But the transition from sharing to asking becomes a mental minefield. Crossing the mental minefield results, for many, into decreased energy, a weaker posture, and less enthusiasm – at a time in the sales pitch, when there needs to be a lifting not a dropping in the energy and posture.


After sharing great value you have earnt the right to share your solution to the problem faced by your clients – and they will be eager to hear it. More often than not, if you have demonstrated you understand the challenges faced and established trust with the client, they will want to invest in your solution.


Each of these mistakes will inhibit your ability to successfully pitch your product or service. However each of these sales killing mistakes can be easily avoid when you deliver your sales pitch. Take the time to prepare yourself and your pitch properly and you will enjoy more success and better results in your sales.


About The Author

Mark Kyte

Mark Kyte is a public speaking mentor and founder of the Public Speaking Skills Academy. Mark loves helping clients achieve dynamic results that help them increase their influence and get more clients. Read more of his blog and if you like what you see check out the mentoring programs.