1. A good way to get your audiences attention is by starting with a problem or question.
2. People want to know about who you and your company are... not just your product. Sure, tell us the problem you are solving but we want to know more about who the team behind it is.
3. When you do speak about your product or service, be sure to sell the benefits and not your features. Look at Apple for example, you hear less about the 1334-by-750-pixel resolution at 326 ppi on the iPhone 7, and more of "a beautifully stunning display!"
4. Know who you are speaking to and use your words carefully. Don't over-promise... or even under-promise. "Great success" from a customer's perspective might be true, but "Interesting initial traction" might be better when speaking to an investor.
5. Avoid jargon, vague or technical terms. Assume the audience doesn't know anything about it - so you don't lose 80% of them in la-la-land.
6. The purpose of any pitch is to ignite interest. You want to tell a strong story, but you also want to leave the audience curious enough to want to come up to you afterwards, ask more questions, visit your site, or download your app.
7. If you sell a physical product: show it during your pitch. If you don't have it produced yet: make a mockup... maybe even cut it out on paper - whatever it takes to be able to demonstrate to people the shape or size so they don't have to sit there wondering.
8. If you've sold 30 products valued at $30,000 each, that's awesome. But a better way to say that is: "We've made over a MILLION dollars in revenue!"
9. Don't forget to slip in things like your years of experience in the field, your education, or achievements to date - it simply makes what you're saying more credible.
10. A lot of pitches end REALLY strong, but start off a little weak. Look at your script again when you think it's ready and see if you can put the last line at the start. Because if you lost them within the first 10-seconds, the last 10 don't matter. Start strong.
11. Practice, practice, practice. Set a goal: be it 30-seconds, 60-seconds or 5-minutes. Whatever target time is, practice with a timer, and try to achieve it. Another useful idea is to have your friend or colleague deliberately distract you during it and practice it like its the real thing. You never know when a baby is going to cry or someone's phone is going to go off during your pitch!