Since 2008, when the US economy seemed to hit rock bottom, many people were forced to consider new ways of earning a living. Many opened their own businesses and introduced themselves to other business owners.
One essential part of being an entrepreneur is networking with other professionals. One part of networking that you can count on is the elevator pitch. The elevator pitch is when you speak for a short time (30 seconds is common) to the other networkers to tell them what you do and what you need. The reason that it is called an elevator pitch is that it should take approximately as long as an elevator ride takes. The purpose for your networking is to establish connections with other people so that you can hopefully help each other professionally. The elevator pitch is a tease. In other words, you are enticing the other people just enough for them to be interested and to want to learn more about you and your business. The elevator pitch (or some form of it) must also be a part of your entire online presence. It should be included in every social media profile that you have online and on your website homepage. On your website, the concept must be there even if the wording is not identical to the verbal elevator pitch that you share with others when you are networking in person.
Changes over time
Elevator pitches are interesting. The elevator pitch that you use when you first start networking is most likely not the elevator pitch that you use subsequently. It changes all of the time. As you start to develop your business and experience new things and new people, your wants and needs will change as well. Your elevator pitch will be adjusted to fit the rest of it. Bear in mind that when you are giving your elevator pitch, people aren’t interested in the minutest details. They are interested in the bottom line and they want to know immediately how you and your business can help them to solve their problems. There are several elements that go into an effective and successful elevator pitch.
- Very little or no technical details
- Your elevator pitch assumes that your audience has an extremely short attention span
- Your elevator pitch will help you to gain clarity
- It puts you in a position of understanding the position of the person to whom you are presenting your pitch
If you incorporate those elements into your elevator pitch, you will capture the audience’s attention and you will succeed at keeping their attention. In addition to those elements that have already been mentioned, there is some additional information that you may find useful and effective in your elevator pitch.
- An explanation why you are doing what you are doing (professionally)
- Your elevator pitch captivates your audience
- Your elevator makes you seem credible
Getting people interested in what you are doing
Your absolute first goal is to get people to be interested in what you are doing and what you are offering. If you can get them interested with that initial 30-second pitch, you can go into more detail at a later date. In fact, it is at the time when you share more details about your business that you will be able to distinguish yourself as a subject matter expert and the person who other people will go to when they have an issue or question that needs to be resolved. Elevator pitches may seem very easy but there is more to them than you might think. It is important to be well prepared before you walk into the room and you will be surprised at how much polishing is necessary before you actually get to the point of standing up and delivering your pitch.
Elevator pitches (whether you like them or not) are an extremely important part of your business. It is so important for you to be able to articulate what you do and how you can help other people through your offerings. Remember that your elevator pitch has nothing to do with actually selling anything directly. You will want to say something in your elevator pitch that stands out and that makes the members of your audience associate you with something that you said in those 30 seconds.
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Carolyn Cohn is the Chief Editor of CompuKol Communications LLC. Mrs. Cohn has a wealth of experience in business writing as well as having a strong editorial background. She manages all of the company’s writers, journalists and editors as well as writing, editing and publishing several business articles a week on a consistent basis, which are syndicated globally.
Mrs. Cohn has run several editorial departments for other companies. She has over 25 years of editorial experience and her expertise covers a wide range of media, such as online editing, and editing books, journal articles, abstracts, and promotional and educational materials.
Throughout her career, Mrs. Cohn has established and maintained strong relationships with professionals from a wide variety of companies. The principle that governs her work is that all words need to be edited.
Mrs. Cohn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo.
Mrs. Cohn is a member of the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA).