Ladies, if you’ve been in business for any amount of time, you’ve probably heard the term “elevator pitch.” But what is it exactly? And how can you use this important skill to showcase your confidence, charisma, and clarity in order to excel and keep the conversation going with potential clients?
An elevator pitch is a short, concise summary of your business or project that you can give to someone in the time it takes to ride an elevator. That might not seem like a lot of time, but trust me when it comes to pitching your business, every second counts.
So, why do you need an elevator pitch? You never know when or where you’ll have the opportunity to meet a potential client or investor. Being able to deliver a well-crafted elevator pitch on the spot can make all the difference in whether or not you’re able to take your business to the next level.
The Simple Definition of an Elevator Pitch
Imagine you were on an elevator, the doors opened, and Oprah stepped in. Now, most of us would probably faint dead away or babble incoherently, but let’s imagine that the Queen was going to encourage us to invest in one of her new projects- a publishing company. The elevator is moving, and Oprah only has thirty seconds to get us to invest in her company.
She might say, “Hi, Mimi- you’re that amazing motivational author I’ve been hearing so much about! I’m glad I had a chance to speak with you; I know you’re passionate about books. I’m Oprah, and besides being an award-winning interviewer, actress, and cultural icon, I also am an avid reader with my own book club. And because I am so passionate about books and promote books on my channel, I am starting a new publishing company. With my track record of elevating books to bestsellers and interviewing up-and-coming authors, I know that starting a publishing company that focuses on self-help, memoir, and inspirational books will be a home run. In fact, we’ve done a year of market research, and it shows that there is a huge audience for these books. Can we set up a meeting?”
Of course, you would invest. Duh. It’s Oprah. And she gave an amazing elevator pitch- it was concise, engaging, brief, she gave her background and expertise, and she ended by asking for a continued meeting.
How You Can Craft a Memorable Elevator Pitch
Crafting an elevator pitch is no easy feat- you need to highlight your experience and confidence as well as make an irresistible offer all in the space of sixty seconds. If you’re lucky, you may get fifteen in front of a company HR rep or even a small board of directors. When you get the chance for a longer pitch, make sure to incorporate visuals, like a PowerPoint or Google Slide show, materials you can pass around, and testimonials to solidify your expertise.
As you’re crafting your pitch, think about the following: Who is your audience? What are their pain points? How can you solve their problems effectively? And how do you position yourself as an expert?
Start with a question, eyebrow-raising statement, or statistic, then explain why you’re the person for the job. Sum it up with your target audience’s biggest benefit from choosing you, then sit back and watch how they react. When done right, elevator pitches will grab your target audience’s attention instantly and leave them wanting more – target those pain points in seconds and showcase your unrivaled expertise in no time.
Tips for Perfecting Your Elevator Pitch for a Wider Audience
Don’t let networking events intimidate you- this is your chance to meet customers and make friends who will be attracted to your swagger and brand! When you have your go-to elevator pitch prepared for meeting new clients, it makes networking so much easier.
Girl, ditch the clichés and make your pitch memorable and authentic; don’t pretend to be something you’re not. Start by listing out the key points you want to include, like your professional experience, skills, and successes. Now comes the fun part; experiment with different ways of presenting yourself. Try out some sassy humor or really emphasize a success story that catches people’s attention. It’s ok to get creative! Make sure you practice your pitch for friends and co-workers that will give you honest feedback until you’re totally comfortable with it. Perfection takes time.
Examples of Good and Bad Elevator Pitches
Good elevator pitches are like elevator music: they’re simple, catchy, and to the point (and like elevator music that you hum later in the day like the worst Kenny-G music, memorable pitches stick with you). The best pitches leave you wanting more! Good pitches will focus on benefits instead of features and use colorful language so that people remember them. They’ll also aim to create a connection and foster conversation. On the other hand, bad elevator pitches are oftentimes filled with convoluted sentences and technical jargon. They don’t engage potential customers with questions or storytelling and may lack a clear goal – all of which can be turn-offs for potential partners. Good elevator pitches are essential for creating memorable impressions, so practice, practice, practice!
To wrap it all up, an elevator pitch is a succinct and punchy sales pitch that captures the listener’s attention within the first 1-2 minutes. Having one is important because, in today’s competitive world, you only have a few seconds to make an impact and convince people that your product or idea is valuable. Crafting your perfect elevator pitch involves understanding your target audience and telling them how your solution solves their problems. Use relevant stories, anecdotes and powerful language as you practice creating and refining your pitch.
What else do successful elevator pitches include? Comment below and let us know. In the meantime, the best way to hone this skill is to continually practice by trial and error – so be sure to use the tips outlined here in order to get on track and find your confidence to speak in public spaces soon! Good luck!