3 Simple Steps to Creating the Perfect Elevator Pitch

How to get people interested in your small business in 30 seconds (or less)

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Elevator Pitch

What do you do?  It’s a question we’re asked all the time − at parties, networking events, everywhere.

But how do you answer it?  With an engaging confidence that makes people want to know more? Or do you panic and simply recite your title?

We all want to have that engaging confidence, right? Well, the key is to be prepared and ready to easily explain it when someone asks. Yup, I’m talking about what most people refer to as the good ol’ Elevator Pitch.

The objective of your Elevator Pitch is to get someone’s attention and interest and get them to engage with you. No one expects that you should be able to sell them on your entire business in just 30 seconds. Just think of it as the ice breaker that will lead to more conversation about what you do.

Sound good? Let’s go ahead and jump right in.

Here are some general rules to keep in mind:

Keep it short and simple.
Stick to your core message and keep your introduction low-level. The details can come out later in the conversation.
No jargon. It must be understandable by anyone. Even your Grandpa. Keep your language casual, like you would in any other conversation with someone you just met.

As for crafting your Elevator Pitch, here’s a simple 3-step formula:

Part 1: The Problem
Start off by telling why you do what you do. It’s important to set up the “why” before you explain your “what”. The reason?  People will be better able to understand your service if they can put it in perspective. Answer the question: what problem do you solve?

To grab their attention, I like to put it in a scenario format so they can visualize the problem. You want people to remember the problem, so when people hear someone mention it; they’ll remember you and say, “Hey, I know someone who can help!” (That’s you! You’re someone!)

Part 2: The Solution
What do you do? And who do you help?  Remember, keep the details to a minimum, and make sure you explain how you solve the problem you set up in part one. Let them know what’s in it for them, while telling them what makes you unique.

Part 3: The Proof

Give an example of how well your solution works. Here you can tell a success story or provide other proof that you’re credible, like a recent award or being featured in the press.

When you put it all together conversationally, it’ll look like this:
You know {problem}? Well, what I do is {solution}. And actually, {proof and examples.}

Once you have your Elevator Pitch down, grab a friend, and give them your pitch. Then, ask them what you do.  If they didn’t understand it or they seem confused, go back and edit your pitch.

If you see their eyes open a little wider and they respond by asking you a question, you know you’ve hit the Elevator Pitch jackpot. Now memorise it so you’re telling the same story every time and your brand stays consistent – although you can tailor your “proof” to suit the audience.  And remember, great connections are often made face-to-face, and aren’t always planned. Having an elevator speech at the ready means you won’t miss opportunities.

What do you think?  Have you had success with your elevator pitch? Or are you going to change it up a bit? Let me know in the comments below.

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Melanie Downey teaches small business owners and entrepreneurs how to catapult their greatness into the world. She'll teach you how to build and innovate your brand to realize its full potential, improve your communication skills, and get your message to the masses. With a 20-year track record of taking clients from being unknown, to being recognized as top brands and household names, she and her clients have been featured in thousands of print, television, and radio stories, with over 6 billion media hits, and countless other online articles. To get free publicity and brand-innovating tips and trainings, check out her facebook page (and say hello!) and sign up for her free newsletter at http://melaniedowney.com.

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