Presidential Pitching

The London press overflowed with images of French President Sarkozy’s wife, a former Italian model yesterday.  It’s amazing how such a splash of celebrity glamour practically eliminated coverage of the real serious issue of precisely what it was he travelled to say.

I caught glimpses of selections from his hour-long speech to Parliament.  The praise he lavished upon the Brits was so gushing, I was compelled to track down the full text.

By most measures, he’s done a fantastic selling job.  The English media are smitten.  And deliciously, anyone needing to prepare a presentation or pitch to a long-time account can take indispensible hints from his approach.

Common Ground & Success

Much of the early words are all about explaining how the two countries share values.  And these are presented in such a way as to extol specific successes we Brits have enjoyed by way of example.  This strikes me as an equally great opener when having to present an account review back to a client, or hoping to start afresh after a debacle.

Current Focus

The middle of the speech described the challenges currently faced by France and all ‘true’ democracies, why they must be tackled and the dangers and rewards when doing so.

Call To Arms

Taking these themes, he then set out how such achievements would be sought.  The line picked out being, “Let’s discuss together, decide together, and act together”.

The Big Issue

And the major portion of his oratory discussed the one enormous political minefield; Europe.  He aimed to reassure his audience that we were closer in our feelings than old-style policital leanings might suggest, and that it’d be better for us to work side by side to make ‘Europe’ work.  The very word ‘Europe’ means something emotively specific to the vast majority of Britons; all the benefits of a free market being gradually and continually eroded by unnecessary and wasteful social and political integration.  So it was brave stuff to take on.  But we as reps of course, may have to be just as brave when trying to keep that account, when they range from at best ambivalence, to at worst outright hostility.

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