How to Pitch an Idea for a Sitcom

Written by lars tramilton
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How to Pitch an Idea for a Sitcom
Get your idea seen on the small screen. (Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

If you have a refreshing, funny and creative idea for a sitcom show and you want the world to see it, then the next logical step is to try to pitch it to a television network. Television producers are exposed to countless pitch ideas on a daily basis, so it is important to make sure that your idea stands out from among the rest of them. Take the appropriate actions to get your idea noticed.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • Treatment

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  1. 1

    Create a strong concept. Make sure that your sitcom idea is original. Whether your sitcom idea comes entirely out of your own head or is based loosely on hilarious or unbelievable events and situations of your life, it is important to develop an idea that is unlike any other.

  2. 2

    Put together a treatment. Writing a treatment is a crucial component to pitching a sitcom idea. A treatments is a synopsis of your concept. With a treatment, it is vital to convey exactly why your concept is beneficial for the small screen. Avoid writing a script, as a treatment is a totally different thing. Keep your words concise and persuasive, and a suitable length generally runs between one to five pages. Keep it short to keep the attention and interest of readers.

  3. 3

    Network with people in the television industry. To get your pitch heard, it is important to find a way to get a pitch meeting set up. Print several copies of your treatment and try to find ways to meet with television producers. Get an internship or entry-level position at a production company. Another way to get a pitch meeting is by hiring an entertainment lawyer or agent, but this method can get expensive.

  4. 4

    Prepare yourself. If you land the coveted pitch meeting, it is essential to be very prepared to sell your idea. Avoid "winging it," because all that will do is lead to you stumbling over your words and staring off blankly into space. Spend the time before the meeting fleshing out your idea in fine detail. Inhabit the existences of your fictional characters and know them inside and out. Be prepared to answer key questions such as, "Why exactly are these specific characters so fascinating?" It is acceptable to have note cards with important information on hand, too.

  5. 5

    Research your audience. If you are at a pitch meeting, you likely will be standing in front of a group of seasoned television pros. To identify with them, do your research beforehand. Find out what programs on which they have worked and are working. Be familiar with the overall "tone" and "feel" of their body of work.

  6. 6

    Practice. Rehearse your pitch in front of trusted family members and friends before your official meeting. Get honest feedback from them on the length of your pitch, vocal delivery and clarity of the information you are delivering. Make sure your discussion is structured and leaves no ambiguities or confusion to the audience. Seek out people who are willing to provide you with constructive criticism.

Tips and warnings

  • Rejection is the name of the game in the entertainment industry. A thick skin is necessary. If one network or production company passes, move on and try another.

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