Entrepreneurship · Professional Development · Selling Yourself

The Pitch By Chris Sacca

Chris Sacca is a venture capitalist out of the San Francisco Bay Area and was recently featured on NPR’s radio program “This American Life.” If you missed it, you should download the podcast from here. The second story of the podcast describes one wantrepreneur’s interaction with Chris (they’re connected somehow as friends), and some of the guidance he gives for a newbie pitching a business idea. The whole thing is well worth a listen, and the highlight for me is Chris’ off-the-cuff pitch of his buddy’s idea, which I’ve transcribed here, as a learning opportunity:

“Hey look, can I get two minutes from you? So here’s the thing: you probably know me, producer of ‘This American Life’, been doing it for 15 years. You know it’s the most successful radio show, top of the podcasts on iTunes, etc. So here’s the thing: I realize there’s a hunger for this kind of content out there. There’s none of this shit, it’s all just a bunch of jerkoff postcasts, there’s nothing out there. Advertisers are dying for it, users are dying for it, and if you look at the macro environment you’re seeing more and more podcast integrations into cars; people want this content; it’s a whole new button in the latest version of iOS. So here’s the thing: nobody else can make this shit. I know how to make it better than anybody in the world, so I’ve already identified a few key areas where I know there’s hunger for the postcasts, I’ve got the subject matter, we’re going to launch this shit. I know there’s advertisers who want to get involved with it. But here’s the unfair advantage I have, because of what I’ve done in my past careers with ‘This American Life’ and ‘Planet Money,’ people are actually willing to just straight-up pay for this stuff, and I’m not just talking about traditional subscriptions. We did this t-shirt experiment at ‘Planet Money’ where we got $600,000 coming in where people actually gave us money to buy t-shirts with our logo on it as part of the content. It was integrated directly, and I know we can replicate that across these other platforms. So here’s what we’re doing: we’re putting together a million and a half dollars that’s gonna buy us 3/4 guys who are gonna launch these 3 podcasts in the next 12 months. We think very easily we could get to 3/400,000 net subscribers across the whole thing. With CPMs where they are with this market right now I know on advertising alone I know we could get to break even, but as we do more of this integration we get people texting in to donate to this stuff, buying some of this product, doing some of these integrated episodes. I know where what we’re going to have on our hands something that will ultimately scale to be a network of 10/15 podcasts, the audience is there, they want it, nobody else can do it like we can, are you in?”

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