The first step towards perfecting your elevator pitch is to understand why you need one: BECAUSE FIRST IMPRESSIONS MATTER and what purpose it serves: TO START A CONVERSATION.
If you accept these underlying principles, you must also accept that your elevator pitch needs to be very short (I would suggest 20 seconds. 30 seconds max) and designed with one outcome in mind: To evoke a response of "Why"?, "How"? or "What"?
So, what should your elevator pitch include?
Crafting a good elevator pitch
A good elevator pitch needs to answer 4 questions, as follows:
- Who? Define your target customer
- What? The end benefit you deliver for those customers
- How? The unique feature or process that enables you to deliver that end benefit
- Hook? An unexpected or unexplained teaser that makes your pitch unique and invites a curious response
As an example, using this checklist, here is my standard elevator pitch.
Hi, I'm Geoff Hirsh, Co-founder and CEO of Business Builders Group
We help SME owners and leaders (who), accelerate their growth (what), by generating warm referrals and new business opportunites (how), from people that they know, like and trust (hook).
The most likely response to this elevator pitch is "How"?
So, behind my elevator pitch I have another 30 second answer waiting, as follows:
By getting 20 - 30 non-competing businesses together once a month for a 3-hour business forum where they solve business problems, educate eachother on what they do and get to know, like and trust one-another under the watchful eye of a professional Business Coach.
Again there are several obvious questions that are likely to result.
But, here's my final and most important piece of advice.
Don't forget the purpose of your elevator pitch is to start a conversation
And that means asking questions and not just spruiking ... "But enough about me. Tell me about you ..."
Every answer you get, will take you one step closer to a sale or the development of a relationship that could lead anywhere.
So, happy pitching. And don't forget to "listen with intent" and start a conversation.