If you want to get Virgin Group founder Richard Branson to listen to your idea, keep the pitch short and sweet.
"The pitches that I remember, and resulted in support and investment, were the ones where the idea could have fitted on the back of an envelope," the billionaire entrepreneur writes in a post on Virgin's website.
A common mistake Branson sees during pitches is repetition. Presenters tend to make their point and then proceed to repeat it over and over.
"If you want to get your message across, be engaging, concise and to the point," he advises. "Then, when you are done saying what you have to say, stop saying it."
This idea extends to life in general. Redundancy not only results in dry pitches, but also in dry conversation, Branson says: "There is nothing worse than sitting next to an enthusiastic person who repeats their same point time and again."
There is one time to be repetitive, the self-made billionaire says: "When you are practicing a pitch, repeat it until you master it. When you find a promising idea, repeat it until it is a winning formula. But when you are pitching, don't fall into the trap of repeating yourself."
Make your point and then quit while you're ahead.