Wheeler dealer Oren Klaff’s book “Pitch Anything: An Innovative Method for Presenting, Persuading, and Winning the Deal” has become a well known reference for those who want to tune their pitches in a different way than many other sales books, and it can be used by real estate investors for many different scenarios. Since much of the sales techniques also include what amount to negotiation scenarios, there is a lot of applicability for purchase and sale transactions plus investor interactions with other investors, financiers, brokers, and more.
At its core, the approach centers around being a bit different while also being very confident. Klaff goes into detail about meeting the needs of people’s deeply embedded “croc brain” instead of the usual presentation styles that cater to a more analytical or logical brain. Most people think logically and believe that will make the best connection, but Klaff believes that targeting your message to everyone’s core needs and relative sense of importance to yourself is much more critical.
“Frame control” is where you go into a negotiation or sales pitch and try to be the alpha (respected leader) while making everyone else the beta (follower). Though it may sound a bit strong, Klaff describes it almost like a cerebral dance, and one that should be approached with a sense of fun. This concept gets expanded by providing explanations and examples for power-busting frames and beta traps, frame collisions between opposing people, setting up yourself and your offering as a prize, seizing status and star power with an audience, eliminating apparent neediness, and intriguing the croc brain.
He emphasizes elements of his STRONG approach to story telling and winning deals: Setting the frame, Telling the story, Revealing the intrigue, Offering the prize, Nailing the hookpoint, and Getting a decision.
For presentations, he advocates spending less than 25% of your time introducing yourself and the big idea, half the time on the budget and secret sauce, a little time on offering the deal, and less than 20% of the time quickly firing on the hot cognitions. The methodology includes three primary content ingredients to demonstrate the value of your product: economic forces, social forces, and technology forces, all of which should be pointing to answer the question “why now?”.
For idea introductions, Klaff utilizes a pitch formula of “For [target customers] who are dissatisfied with [the current offerings on the market] my idea/product is a [new idea or product category] that provides [key problem/solution features] unlike [the competing product] my idea/product is [describe key features].”
Like many sales books, there is sometimes a feeling of this being about manipulative techniques (which get denied by the author but are nonetheless present). But the underlying concepts are valuable to keep in mind and adapt to your own purposes, while also being aware of how others may be using these techniques in your presence from time to time. There are many situations where a real estate investor can utilize and tap into the concepts as needed. As such, it is a solid addition to your reading list if you want to improve your pitch or negotiation skills.