Just Finished Pitching Your Cartoon–Now What?
Your Handy Dandy Post-Pitch Dos and Don’ts Checklist
So you just finished your pitch meeting, and you feel good! That wasn’t so bad now was it? You connected with the execs, they seemed to like your idea, and you’re expecting a call within a week or three.
So what now?
First, relax. Take a breath. The hard part is over.
Here are a few dos and don’ts for what to do after your pitch:
Do: Leave the building. Even if someone did not walk you all the way outside, do NOT roam around the offices pretending you’re lost. That’s just creepy.
Don’t: Get on your phone and call your agent or colleague while still inside and recap your pitch. You never know who might be listening.
Do: Collect your thoughts while everything is fresh on your mind. It might be helpful to make a voice memo on your phone in your car. Remind yourself of what went well, which part got a good laugh, which part made them sick, and what they said were the next steps. Recall any criticism or notes you may have received, and decide whether you want to make those changes.
Don’t: Post on Facebook that you just came back from a pitch at (specific network) with (specific executive). Unless told to do so, DON’T look for them on Facebook and send them a friend request.
Do: Email the exec you just pitched a brief thank you, letting them know you’re happy to answer any questions they may have. One of the best ways to start that email is with a phrase like “It was great meeting you yesterday to talk about ______.” Mention some specific things you liked or enjoyed learning about their studio and their needs. If you mentioned any follow-up material you promised to send, make sure you do it, or tell them when they can expect it. Close with something like, “I look forward to hearing from you.” Just don’t make it a book-length email.
Don’t: Send more than one follow-up email if you haven’t heard back from the first email, unless more than two weeks have passed. If you haven’t heard back in six weeks…that’s not a good sign. If you have an agent, ask them to follow up. If you don’t, send another polite email. If you still don’t hear back after another two weeks, it’s best to move on. The sad truth is that sometimes the execs are too busy to send a form rejection letter.
Keep on creating—don’t give up!
Do: Send your revised animated pitch bible based off the feedback you received in the room.
Don’t: Send more than one follow-up email to the other execs that were in the room – they WILL tell each other that the “crazy lady with the awful talking hat show” is spamming their inboxes.
Do: Try to line up other pitches. You’ll need to make some adjustments to fit the other networks preferences though.
Do: Brainstorm other ideas and be ready to pitch again in 4-6 weeks. Don’t be afraid to contact the same execs again, letting them know you have another idea you’d like to run by them.
Do: Keep improving your craft. Write. Draw. Create. Update your blog. Learn a new language.
Development is slower than a sloth on a glacier. Be patient.
I said relax! Calm down. You got through the pitch just fine. So don’t shoot yourself in the big toe now.