Ask a group of people to describe what you do in one sentence. Chances are you’ll get a yawn-inducing, generic elevator pitch.
In order to be memorable, and to provide more than is on your business card, you must create a unique elevator pitch that maximises your communication skills and captures your audience’s attention.
A 30-second elevator pitch is a short, one-sentence description of your company’s product or service that you share with people who might want to work with you. It’s also good practice to write it down in case you forget or need to refer to it later.
For an elevator pitch to be effective, you need to make it brief and interesting. The longer the pitch, the less likely you or a potential client are to remember it, especially if it is in a social setting.
What makes a good elevator pitch?
A few personal elevator pitch “must haves” include:
1. Be memorable – Make sure your audience remembers something about your business after hearing just one sentence. If they can’t recall anything specific, then chances are they won’t be interested enough to follow up on their interest.
2. Tell them why they should care – You don’t have to tell everyone everything about your business but if there’s an opportunity for someone else to learn more about your offering, do so briefly and succinctly.
3. Include benefits – What does your offer bring to the table that others don’t? How will this benefit customers/clients/partners?
4. Show how you solve problems – Don’t assume that anyone knows exactly what problem you’re solving. Explain specifically how you help clients overcome challenges.
5. Use language that resonates – Avoid jargon and buzzwords unless you know those words mean something to your target market.
6. Keep it simple – Your goal isn’t to bore potential employers or partners into submission; instead, aim to intrigue them by making your message easy to understand.
7. Focus on value – People buy from businesses because they believe that the products or services offered provide real value. So focus on explaining how your solution solves customer pain points rather than simply describing features.
How to write a memorable elevator pitch
Here are some elevator speech tips to keep in mind when writing your own elevator pitch:
- Start with a question – Ask yourself “what would I say if I were standing at the top of an elevator?” Then answer that question. This forces you to think through all aspects of your story before drafting.
- Think like a journalist – Journalists always start with a headline followed by subheadings. Break your content into smaller chunks. For example, if you had three key bullet points, each could become its own paragraph.
- Know your audience – Who are you pitching to? Are they technical experts or nontechnical decision makers? Do they already use technology solutions similar to yours? Or are they looking for new ways to improve existing processes? Knowing these details helps you craft a better pitch.
- Get feedback – Once you’ve written out your elevator pitch, ask friends and family members to read it aloud.
What to avoid in your elevator pitch
While most companies craft a great elevator pitch, many cannot take advantage of the power of storytelling. Here are some suggestions on what not to include in your pitch:
- Too much information – A lot of pitches end up being too long and complicated. Instead, try keeping it concise and focused.
- No call to action – When you finish telling your story, encourage listeners to contact you via phone, email, social media, etc.
- A sales pitch – If you feel compelled to sell your idea, then maybe you shouldn’t be sharing it in the first place!
- Boring stories – Stories entertain us. They aren’t just informative—they inspire us to act. Try including personal anecdotes or funny moments to spice up your presentation.
Why you should write down your elevator pitch
Writing things down not only helps you retain information better, but it also gives you time to consider different angles and perspectives on your business goals.
Plus, having a copy of your pitch means you’ll never lose track of it again!