Editing the Pitch: Patterns of Editing Strategies of Written Pitches in a Chilean Accelerator Program

Background: After a six-month training program in the Chilean public accelerator Start-Up Chile, entrepreneurs are asked to update a short pitch they wrote in the submission stage to appear in the program’s online portfolio.

Literature review: We reviewed relevant literature related to the pitch as well as research aiming to track changes within pitches.

Research questions: 1. Which are the editing strategies used to change their pitch? 2. Do these strategies conform to specific discursive patterns?

Research methodology: To answer the research questions, we designed an exploratory qualitative study to describe in depth the editing strategies used by two generations of startups, corresponding to 148 pairs of written pitches. In order to contextualize the results, we conducted two interviews with the program managers and analyzed the accelerator’s official Playbook and Technical and Administrative Requirements.

Results: We identified 10 editing strategies. Of those editing strategies, “Deleting technical descriptions” is by far the most common procedure. The identified patterns can be classified into two groups, those simplifying, hedging, and focusing on certain elements of the first pitch, and those adding and specifying information of the first version.

Conclusions: We conclude by discussing the strengths of this methodological approach for understanding such edits and for supporting successful edits in accelerator programs, as well as the potential for better understanding entrepreneur coachability.