Bookbinge: Pitch Anything by Oren Klaff

Oren is an investment banker who specializes in pitching, and closing deals, but early in his career he thought there had to be a better way to deliver the perfect pitch. That’s when he began his research in neuroscience and how the different parts of the brain react to information.  That’s when he created the process behind his book, Pitch Anything.

In the beginning of his book, Oren talks about the three different parts of the brain:

  • Crocodile Brain: Survival – fight or flight response.
  • Mid-brain: Social Relationships – Determines what is going on in the moment.
  • Neocortex: The problem-solving brain.

The goal is to get your message through the crocodile brain and into the neocortex.  The crocodile brain immediately wants to code new information in three ways:

  1. Boring: Ignore it.
  2. Dangerous: Fight/run.
  3. Complicated: Radically summarize and pass information in severely truncated form. Resulting in a lot of data loss.

The way to make sure your complete message gets through to your audience is to use his STRONG method:

  • Set the frame
  • Tell the story
  • Reveal the intrigue
  • Offer the prize
  • Nail the hookpoint
  • Get the deal

His idea of Frames, and how to use and deal with them, is the main point of the book.

Most business situations you’ll encounter three major types of opposing frames:

  1. Power frame
  2. Time frame
  3. Analyst frame

There are three major response frame types you can use to meet these oncoming frames, win the initial collision, and control the agenda:

  1. Power-busting frame
  2. Time constraining frame
  3. Intrigue frame
    The fourth is useful against all three:
  4. Prize frame

Get in the game (7 steps)
Step 1: Learn to recognize beta traps and how to step around them.
Step 2: Start stepping around beta traps.
Step 3: Identify and label social frames.
Step 4: Begin to initiate frame collisions with safe targets.
Step 5: The small acts of defiance and denial you use to take control of a social frame create a certain amount of conflict and tension.
Step 6: Frame control cannot be forced because this takes the fun out of it.
Step 7: Work with other frame masters.

Most Important Terms
Frame control: This is what you’re trying to do in your presentations.  You want to control the presentation and the direction of the discussion.  If you control the frame, you’ll be able to move past the crocodile brain and into the neocortex.
Power-busting frame:  If you encounter the three types of frames discussed earlier then you can use the four power busting frames to capture frame control to control the direction of the conversation.
Frame collisions: When two frames collide and battle for frame control.  The result of being challenges by one of the power frames and then using a power-busting frame against it.  There can be many frame collisions in every business conversation.
Prizing:  Is a power-busting frame that can be used against any of the three power frames.  Prizing is when you hold a prize out to the audience or target to draw them toward your decision.
Beta traps: Anything that can be used to take away from your status.  Waiting rooms, receptionists, being placed on hold, dealing with non-decision makers, or acting to needy at the end of a presentation are all types of beta traps.
Seizing status: At the beginning of your presentation seizing control of status about why should people listen to you and why you have authority.
Local star power: Similar to seizing status.  Addressing why you’re a start and people should follow your thoughts.
Push/pull: the natural tug and pull of trying to control the frame.  If done to forcibly then it can actually harm your goals and turn the audience off.  It’s supposed to be a fun game and not total domination.
Alpha: The main frame in the room.  If you’re presenting you need to establish yourself as the Alpha otherwise who ever does will be able to sidetrack or derail your agenda.
Hot cognition: Deciding that you like something before you fully understand it.
Crocodile brain: The first area of the brain that new information encounters.  This harbors the fight or flight sensors and immediately tries to code new information.
Neocortex: The problem solving section of the brain.  This is where you want you message to go so people can absorb your story.