In many aspects of our life we are pitching concepts and ideas to people.
It may be the entrepreneur trying to attract seed capital. Or a more advanced company trying to attract venture captial funding to quickly expand their operations which will in turn lead to potential increased profit.
We live in the information age. Information is being shared constantly and it is more competitive to get your great idea noticed.
So let's meet Uma Oldham. She is dynamic. Walks fast and completely unforgettable.
Uma at her wedding. Mamallapuram, India. March, 2014
What is your background Uma? Tell us about your experience and any career highlights.
I'm a communication specialist with 14 years experience in account management, digital and strategy. I've worked across some of Australia's biggest brands: Qantas, XXXX Gold, Drumstick, Heineken, Hyundai, Fairfax, Sanitarium, Reckitt Benckiser, 20th Century Fox, just to name a few.
Career highlights include working in the project team to bring the XXXX Island project to life. Basically XXXX Gold leased an island in QLD and turned it into a blokes paradise: bbq, fishing, beach huts etc. Our role was to come up with the consumer engagement strategy which ultimately lead to XXXX being the number 1 beer brand in Australia (2012).
Leading research pieces for 20th Century Fox on a more discerning film audience which helped the Grand Budapest Hotel achieve BO success.
Winning various awards across strategy and digital over my career and helping others achieve.
Being a part of the Kia/Hyundai winning pitch team.
What is your current job role?
I am a Group Business Director at ZenithOptimedia in Sydney.
What is your advice on how to nail the perfect pitch?
It's about knowing your audience and asking the right questions before the official pitch. This makes sure you stay on brief and you present in a style that suits the audience.
Is it sometimes a bit of a numbers game? The more you pitch your idea, you are more likely to increase your rate of success?
I think it is a numbers game as it makes you "pitch fit". Practice makes perfect etc. For me your core idea and company philosophy should remain the same however you might dial certain things up depending on the audience.
Do you try to warm up your audience before a pitch? For example, drip feed the audience information before a presentation or send presentation/information in advance?
Absolutely. I think most pitches in our industry are won before you get into the room. Fostering relationships, Q&A sessions, teasers etc are all key to winning a pitch.
Any advice on how to sell in a complicated idea to a group of boffins?
Make a video
Communicate it in a tweet
Make sure you exercise the "mum" test. Or. If your mum gets it, then you've explained it clearly!
Any recent success stories? Or your most successful pitch?
We've recently been successful in retaining Tourism Northern Territory. This was an integrated digital, creative and media pitch which was interesting and loads of fun.
Uma getting to know the locals in the Northern Territory.