Building on the movie scriptwriter pitch favourite of the logline, I see lately a raft of eager founders, copywriters and commentators describe new ventures in terms of a modern-day lovechild.
Specifically, where a trio of 'parents' might be cited to demonstrate the dna of the baby.
Such 'high concept' associative pitches often cite a single source in a new context. One film classic being where Ridley Scott's 1979 Alien was framed as 'Jaws in space'.
And how many a pitch have you heard citing that someone is the big-ticket global goliath for whatever topic du jour currently eats up feeds? Such as AI, 'phygital' [urgh] or WFA. Like hearing, say, 'we're the Google for _____'.
For instance, I recently read about an app called Rooser. Aiming to digitise and make way more efficient the relatively traditional chain that catches, processes and delivers fish. Described as 'GoogleMaps for seafood'.
Then there's this month's arrest for fraud in America of 31yo founder, Charlie Javice. She touted her startup, Frank, as 'Amazon for higher education'. Aiming to help students find financial aid. Yet stands accused of providing false numbers, leading to acquisition in 2021 by JPMorgan Chase, for an alleged vastly inflated price of $175m.
Next there's the typical 'marriage' trope. Brand X meets Brand Y. Also neatly shown as a two-circle Venn diagram. Where lo and behold, the pitcher sits neatly in the hitherto unclaimed yet potentially lucrative space where the two cited references might just intersect.
Now there's a third parent being added to the mix. As there's a name for an organism borne of three sets of chromosomes, I use that biological term here; triploid.
Another example I recently read was to label Chinese online fast fashion behemoth Shein in just such terms. Taking first Amazon, then adding in your social media of choice (in this case, Instagram), and popping on a global high street clothing brand (Zara).
Which got me thinking about how to frame either your freshly launched endeavour or a particular project unique in the eyes of its potential buyer for which you craft a proposal.
One way is to look at a kind of bingo card.
I resist the temptation for the obvious first column featuring the (now outdated?) FAANGs. Here, I list a quintet of options underneath three randomly selected groupings building on the above clothing example.
|ecom platform||socials||consumer giant|
Pick any one from each column. Taken together, do they shout out 'House'?
Whilst this is a generic kind of example, your prospect may well be trying to move forward in a way that touches on three pillars of existing supply.
Can you generate such a table for them?
And would it help spark a discussion which could reveal the present b-school buzzword of 'value gap', combined with an emergent desired pathway there, leading to better buy-in?
Perhaps also evolving from mere 'brands'. Having columns of a tech sector relevant to their ambitions. Or a specific technology. Maybe a particular admired approach/methodology. Or alongside a certain renowned service deliverers.