Every year I take a long look at the ongoing projects I have on my plate, currently ATL Tech Blogs and Pitch Practice, and make a plan for their future. As for ATL Tech Blogs, we reached a cool, albeit vanity, milestone in December: 20,000 Twitter followers. No big changes for that publication anytime soon. Just keep on keepin’ on promoting startups, entrepreneurs, community, and jobs from Atlanta fo’ free. Pitch Practice has some neat things brewing, though, on the heels of raising more than $6,000 to build a home for a family living in a tent in El Salvador. Here’s what we have planned for the new year for Pitch Practice.
However, let’s first acknowledge the word “plan.” My second favorite Bible verse explains this quite well. Proverbs 16:9 says, “A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” I saw a slightly looser translation on Facebook the other day: “How do you make God laugh? You make plans of your own.” That sounds about right.
That Book I promised
Yeah, well over a year ago, as (I thought) the Pitch Practice Podcast was accelerating, I promised a book. My, how life does get in the way of our plans, no?
But the book is 99% done! I’ve created a LOT of content for and about Pitch Practice over these 4 1/2 years and 2,600 pitches. Over the Christmas break, I took a deep inventory and ended up with nearly 15,000 words that really encompass what Pitch Practice has been, is, and will be all about.
It was very cathartic to walk through almost the entire history of the meetup, see what I was thinking at every stage, and bring it all together into one (hopefully) cohesive and helpful publication. The book should end up being about 75 or 80 pages (depending on formatting, etc.) and is built upon the six points of the Pitch Practice methodology of building a great pitch.
Now, I need an editor, a job which will not make you rich, or famous, but would be very rewarding. If you have some pro bono time on your hands, and enjoy shredding mediocre prose with fat red pens, please drop me a line. The plan is to release the book along with another part of the plan (keep reading) that is coming soon.
That’s the plan anyway.
Constant Content Creation
Every session of Pitch Practice is full of content, both from the individual pitches and the open discussion after each pitch. Sometimes we delve into the business model to learn more about the pitch, and sometimes we dig deep into the pitch to discover the story. Either way, it’s fantastic content, and, starting this Friday, we’re going to begin digitally capturing more of that content. I’m not perfectly clear on exactly what the plan is for that content yet, but at least we’ll have it available.
Capturing the audio and video will help us determine the best use of the content. Maybe a YouTube channel or a differently formatted podcast? I’m not sure yet, and would love to hear your ideas. I am getting some inspiration from Pitch Practice graduate Ed Bolian, who discovered that telling stories about exotic cars can indeed fund a startup. VINWiki‘s YouTube channel is getting millions of views and driving serious downloads of the VINWiki mobile app.
Maybe I’ll be a youtuber! Yeah…maybe.
Pitch Practice on the Radio
How would you like to pitch your startup or idea or yourself to half a million listeners? That’s the idea behind a Pitch Practice radio show pilot. This idea made it to the top of the stack last fall, and now it’s a plan (there’s that word again). Basically the same format as the weekly meetup, but a little less wild, wild west. We’ve considered – many times actually – recording the entire Friday sessions. However, there’s so much chatter among 10-20 people in the room. Without a Hollywood style camera crew, and days of editing, it would never go over very well.
We’ve ended up at a plan for a 4-person event. Three of the people will deliver their pitches, and then we will discuss them, LIVE on the air for about 8-10 minutes each. There will obviously be a little more pressure on each pitch, but we’ll do our best to keep things light, because, after all, it is still Pitch Practice.
There is a cost to producing a radio show, so we are seeking sponsors who want to put their message in front of half a million listeners at midsize B2B businesses with 25-1,000 employees. There’s a limit to the number of sponsors we can take for the pilot. The pilot will be 6 episodes airing between over the next couple of months. We already have two sponsors ready to roll, and we’re looking for 4 more.
The plan for all three initiatives is to make the experience of Pitch Practice available to more new entrepreneurs. Perhaps we can mobilize that larger community to build more homes or pay it forward in some other way.
Thank you for your ongoing support of Pitch Practice. If you are or know of an editor or potential radio show pilot sponsor, please shoot me a quick email.