If you've invented something and looking to license it, a compelling pitch is non-negotiable. But the difference between a pitch that wins over your potential licensee and one that falls flat may lie in how well you tell your story.
Enter Donald Miller’s StoryBrand Framework, a seven-part method that simplifies the storytelling process. It is no secret that we are big fans of the StoryBrand framework. In fact, we've infused every page of our website with the framework, and even work with StoryBrand certified professional Katie Lantukh help us craft compelling messaging.
In this blog post, we’ll break down how to leverage this framework to craft the perfect pitch for your invention.
What is StoryBrand?
Stories are inherently relatable. We've been telling them for centuries to connect, educate, and inspire. Donald Miller's StoryBrand Framework distills the elements of storytelling into a formula that can effectively guide your audience to the outcome you desire—in this case, licensing your invention.
Donald Miller's StoryBrand Framework consists of seven elements:
Character: Introduces the hero of the story.
Problem: Defines the challenge or obstacle facing the hero.
Guide: Introduces someone who helps the hero.
Plan: Outlines the guide's strategy for solving the problem.
Calls to Action: What the hero needs to do.
Avoid Failure: What’s at risk if the hero fails.
Success: The final result if the hero follows the guide.
How to Apply the StoryBrand Framework to Your Pitch
1. Character: The Market/End-User
In the StoryBrand framework, the hero or "Character" is often the customer. In your pitch, highlight who this end-user or market segment is. Make sure to establish why this market is crucial for your potential licensee. For example:
“Meet Sarah, a busy working mom who struggles to keep her house clean. She represents a market segment worth $50 million annually.”
2. Problem: Pain Points
State the problems or challenges faced by this market segment, framing it in a way that shows your potential licensee how they can benefit from solving this issue:
“Sarah often finds it impossible to clean up spills while managing her kids, which leaves her frustrated and dissatisfied with existing solutions.”
3. Guide: Your Invention
Introduce your invention as the guide—the entity that helps the hero overcome their problems.
“Our invention, the ‘SmartMop,’ can be a game-changer for Sarah. It’s a mop that not only cleans effectively but also has autonomous navigation.”
4. Plan: Licensing Benefits
This is where you explain the plan—how licensing your invention aligns with the licensee's business strategy.
“By licensing the SmartMop, you can capture a significant share of this $50 million market, delivering a convenient solution to a real problem.”
5. Calls to Action: What You Want
Make it clear what you are asking for—a licensing agreement, a second meeting, a prototype test, etc.
“I invite you to consider a licensing agreement that will benefit both of us and solve a significant market problem.”
6. Avoid Failure: Risks of Not Acting
Impress upon them the potential loss or risk they face by not acting.
“Ignoring this opportunity could result in a loss of market share, as the need for smarter cleaning solutions continues to grow.”
7. Success: The Win-Win Scenario
Paint a picture of what success looks like when they decide to license your invention.
“With the SmartMop in your product lineup, you could be looking at a 20% increase in revenue and a foothold in a growing market segment.”
Final Tips for Crafting the Pitch
Keep it Short: Your pitch should be concise but complete. Aim for 10-15 minutes.
Visual Aids: Use a presentation or prototype to visualize the story and make it tangible.
Practice: Know your pitch inside out; stumbling may erode confidence.
Follow Up: Always have a next step in mind to keep the momentum going.
Licensing an invention is a significant undertaking, but a well-crafted pitch can be a powerful tool in your arsenal. Utilizing the StoryBrand Framework allows you to connect with potential licensees on an emotional level, presenting your invention not just as a product but as a compelling story with the potential for a happy ending. So go ahead, be the guide in your story, and lead your potential licensee to success.