Pitch Perfect: How to Say It Right the First Time, Every Time

Overview

The media coach and Emmy Award-winning correspondent Bill McGowan shares his secrets of pitch-perfect communications, showing readers how to communicate with confidence.

During the pivotal moments of our lives, results are often determined not only by our actions but by our words as well. Saying the right thing the right way can make the difference between sealing the deal or losing the account, advancing your career or suffering a demotion. During these moments, it's important ...

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Pitch Perfect: How to Say It Right the First Time, Every Time

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Overview

The media coach and Emmy Award-winning correspondent Bill McGowan shares his secrets of pitch-perfect communications, showing readers how to communicate with confidence.

During the pivotal moments of our lives, results are often determined not only by our actions but by our words as well. Saying the right thing the right way can make the difference between sealing the deal or losing the account, advancing your career or suffering a demotion. During these moments, it's important to be pitch perfect—to use precisely the right tone to convey the right message to the right person at the right time. Such pitch-perfect moments are crucial in our personal and professional journeys. In Pitch Perfect, the renowned media coach Bill McGowan shows you how to craft just the right message. Along the way, McGowan lays out his Seven Principles of Persuasion, including:

  • The Scorsese Principle: Hold your audience's attention with visual images. Direct the film that plays in your listener's mind.
  • The No-Tailgating Principle: Avoid verbal fender-benders and career-wrecking moments by maintaining a safe talking distance. When in doubt, stop talking and listen.
  • The Pasta-Sauce Principle: Cure boredom by boiling down your message, making it as rich and brief as possible.

In Pitch Perfect, you'll learn how to overcome all these communication pitfalls. The Seven Principles of Persuasion are as easy to learn, implement, and master as they are effective. The right language—both verbal and nonverbal—can make you more confident, persuasive, and certain. It can stir people to listen closely to your every word and to remember you long after you've left the room.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
02/17/2014
Communications coach McGowan, a former television news anchor, offers a deftly written guide for improving presentation skills. Writing with Bowman, McGowan walks readers through lessons for getting the results they want, making their points in less time, overcoming anxiety, and getting more done. He covers persuasion, self-pacing, mastering successful body positioning, gestures, and facial language, clothing, thinking on your feet, and overcoming the tendency to use wishy-washy language. The book particularly shines when McGowan turns his talent for engaging narrative to entertaining use. For example, his “Scorcese Principle,” which stresses that the best way to get your point across is to be entertaining and interesting, or his suggestion that readers follow the model of Mad Men’s Don Draper in condensing points down to ad-lines. In addition, McGowan includes scripts for interesting cocktail-party chatter and the much-feared public speaking engagement. Though much of the content is aimed at improving professional pitches and conversations, the advice can be extrapolated to getting any conversation started on the right foot; he later addresses better communication at critical points in one’s life, such as wedding toasts, eulogies, and meeting future in-laws. The book is an in-depth training course for better communication and self-presentation, and invaluable for anyone looking to make their conversations—and presentations—more impactful. 13 b&w illus. Agent: Wayne Kabak, Wayne Kabak Literary Agency. (Apr.)
Success
“You can learn to express yourself more effectively, handle difficult conversations gracefully and deliver a great presentation by following and practicing…McGowan packs the book with valuable examples of what was said versus what should have been said…Filled with smart, valuable advice, Pitch Perfect is a home run.”
Sheryl Sandberg
With Bill McGowan’s book in front of you, your days of thinking “I wish I had said that” will be behind you. His peerless advice offers readers a real chance to be heard and to succeed.
Wynton Marsalis
“Bill McGowan has captured the indefinable human essence of his teaching on the written page. You are assured of learning more than you can imagine while enjoying Pitch Perfect.”
Eli Manning
“Success depends on having a great game plan. In Pitch Perfect, Bill McGowan provides just that-winning strategies for how to improve your communication skills, especially in life’s red-zone situations.”
Denise Morrison
“In today’s world of micromessages and fleeting attention spans, connecting with your audience is more important than ever. Bill McGowan’s Pitch Perfect provides valuable and proven strategies for anyone looking to communicate effectively.”
Daniel Ek
“Bill McGowan has identified a fresh and simple way for us to rethink how we communicate. His innovative strategies work not just in our professional lives but in everyday life as well. That’s why he’s an excellent teacher and why I always enjoy working with him.”
Thomas Keller
“Bill McGowan proves in Pitch Perfect what his clients already know-he is the premiere communications coach in business today. His insightful advice and strategies work.”
Kirkus Reviews
2014-02-19
A media expert's techniques for acquiring and honing clear communication skills. After a two-decade journalism career producing and anchoring syndicated newsmagazine programs, McGowan, a former Emmy-winning TV correspondent–turned–media-coaching entrepreneur, knows the tenets of effective communication and professional presentation. From his communications training company, Clarity Media Group, he now helps everyone—from authors to CEOs to career-changing job seekers—to achieve and project a greater public confidence level. "Great communicators are not genetically predetermined," he writes. "They are made." His careful guidebook, written with the assistance of Bowman (co-author: Be Fearless: Change Your Life in 28 Days, 2012, etc.), steers readers away from the social faux pas and missteps (e.g., apologizing at the onset of a presentation) responsible for stalling careers and stagnating business relationships. His approach is evenhanded and straightforward and brims with advice for anyone hoping to brush up on public speaking, effective presentation skills and interviewing prowess both within and outside of the contemporary workforce marketplace. McGowan cites many relatable scenarios, including a botched first impression with a large new client (Facebook) that was rescued with positive reinforcement and a polished, professional approach. The author spends much of the text overviewing his seven principles of persuasion, a masterful "mental checklist" of key communicative behaviors that include authoritative body language, direct eye contact, attentiveness, voice tone, pacing and verbal conciseness. His "pitch-perfect pointer" and "makeover" sections further clarify these maxims and place them into real-world contexts. The author stresses that becoming a compelling speaker with engaging stage presence takes time and effort. His methodology is not meant to change the person seeking guidance but, with practice and preparation, to draw their strengths out and encourage diligence in achieving an increased level of interactive confidence. A proactive approach to mastering the art of interpersonal communication.
Library Journal
★ 03/01/2014
Have you ever said something you wish you could take back or rephrase? These slips of the tongue may be insignificant—but sometimes they have devastating consequences, especially in the business world. Here communications coach and Emmy Award-winning news correspondent McGowan (founder, CEO, Clarity Media Group) seeks to eliminate lost chances of perfect communication with "Seven Principles of Persuasion." In this engaging, enlightening, and full-of-practical-advice text, McGowan calls out poor public speaking doctrine and replaces it with examples of better ways to persuade and communicate. The author breaks down clichés, targets meaningless industry jargon, and highlights simplicity and clarity. He describes how to sit or stand when addressing an audience and how to phrase your message in a way that instantly hooks listeners. His principles aren't limited to addressing crowds but are applicable to small presentations, group meetings, moderating panels, and more. Indeed, the advice extends beyond the workplace. McGowan's methodology is accessible—simply reading the book reduces the ubiquitous fear of public speaking to a tolerable level and makes the prospect seem enjoyable. VERDICT While this title is beneficial for anyone looking to improve their communication skills and advance professionally, it is essential for executives or professionals in environments where public speaking or pitching ideas is routine. [See Prepub Alert, 10/20/13.]—Laurel Tacoma, Strayer Univ. Lib., Washington, DC
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062273222
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/1/2014
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 102,566
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Bill McGowan is the founder and CEO of Clarity Media Group. A two-time Emmy Award–winning correspondent, McGowan has conducted hundreds of interviews with newsmakers, CEOs, celebrities, authors, editors, attorneys, and athletes. McGowan now uses that experience to coach and train everyone from corporate CEOs to celebrities such as New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning, the actress Katherine Heigl, and the jazz great Wynton Marsalis. He also speaks regularly to large corporate audiences at such companies as Credit Suisse, Condé Nast, and Campbell's.

Alisa Bowman has collaborated on seven New York Times bestselling books. Her articles have appeared in Prevention, Family Circle, , and many other national magazines.

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