The fourth season of HBO’s award-winning series, “Insecure,” starts with quite a few twists and eye-openers.
One of the central storylines carried over from season three is Issa’s ambitious block party idea. The awkward, everyday lead character is determined to showcase Inglewood, California, her Los Angeles hometown. With full-fledged F.U.B.U. vibes, she hopes that the block party will celebrate and bring more attention to small, Black-owned businesses in her community, which are often shut down or forgotten about due to fast-growing, widespread gentrification.
In the season premiere, Issa works with a newfound friend, Condola, on a business mixer that will help her gain much-needed sponsors to fund and supply a successful event. While — true to real-life — Issa experiences some personal and professional roadblocks along the way, she ultimately nails her business pitch and takes necessary steps toward a huge career moment.
If you find yourself lowkey struggling, here are a few notes for perfecting your business pitch before your opportunity passes you by. (Be warned: A few spoilers ahead.)
Collaborate with someone who knows the ropes.
Issa partners with uber-polished PR professional Condola to ensure her block party is fun, organized, and sheds a positive light on her city. In all fairness, Issa could’ve simply asked around to kick off her idea solo. Instead, she chose to work with an experienced, knowledgeable pro who could not only guide the logistics but also tap into a larger network for support (lowkey brilliant).
You don’t have to round up investors or sponsors alone. Look for those who are also passionate about your idea to help bring your pitch to life.
Use your resources, even if they are limited.
Shelling out thousands of dollars to throw an event to raise money for your larger dream can be stressful. Don’t cause yourself an unnecessary headache by outsourcing everything on your checklist to pricey companies. Similar to Issa, ask your friends to pitch in. Got a brother who can DJ? Put him on. Is that person you’re casually dating a security guard? Perfect, ask for a favor.
You can even skip the mixer and sell your idea to interested individuals over coffee or drinks. Just know that you can pull anything off with the resources you have.
Keep it short and sweet, but not too vague.
Issa botches her pitch during a conversation with Sheryl (Paula Jai Parker), potentially one of her biggest sponsors for the street fest. The details of her idea are fuzzy at best. She makes unnecessary quips (obvi to calm her nerves) and altogether leaves out her “why.” Later, she even gives different details about her plan to each attendee to pander to their specific needs (huge mistake).
To keep your pitch short and sweet, pare it down to its core message and speak passionately. That’s the best way to stay on top of your game, no matter who’s in front of you.
As cliché as it sounds, just be real.
At first, Issa assumes potential clients want her to speak, dress, and present her idea in a particularly sophisticated way. However, her expectations of what she believes they find acceptable almost cost her several sponsors. Ultimately, what works for Issa is a scene-stealing speech where she shares why the block party is important to her and her Inglewood community. *Mic drop*
So remember, the hard part is done: You have a great idea.
You know why your idea matters. All you have to do is use your emotional connection to the idea to convince others that it should be important to them as well, at least enough to invest their money.
Trust, if you show up authentically, believe in your pitch, and just be real, those who are supposed to be on your business journey with you will join you.