The Elevator Pitch
Let me start of by saying that I am NOT very good at this! But, it is something I strive to improve on and a skill that I admire in others.
If you don’t know what I am referring to, it is based on the concept of stepping into an elevator with someone and pitching who you are or what your company does in a compressed time frame. Depending on the number of floors in the building, you may only have 2, 5, or 10 minutes max. It’s a cool concept and applies to business interactions everyday — whether you’re on an elevator, a plane, in a meeting, or at a social gathering.
In an article from Paul Morin from CompanyFounder.com, Every Entrepreneur Needs an Elevator Pitch, he creates scenarios that explain the concept. It’s a good read.
Now, for me. I can be long-winded. I tend to over explain and use too many adjectives when talking, particularly when it’s something I am passionate about. But under the filter of The Elevator Pitch, I can see why I need to work on this.
Imagine if you are going into a meeting with an end-user or even better, imagine you are cold calling someone in person regarding the services you provide. While bonus points are gained for being presentable and having an engaging personality, time is everything in many of our meetings. At best, you may only get 10-15 minutes to present who you are and what you do. And sometimes even less.
So, you need to plan how you can create an engaging synopsis of what you do and be prepared to deliver it clearly and succinctly. Especially in the cold call scenario where the client may already be working with another vendor.
I find this to be very true when traveling and making sales calls to existing and new distributors. I can’t tell you the number of times I have been in a market for five days and find myself with some “gaps” to fill due to cancellations or other scheduling difficulties. So what do you do? Go sit in your room and wait until your next appoint? No, you go to Plan B and try to see someone else at the last minute, which sets up the scenario of finding them too busy to see you for more than five minutes. In that case, you must have a tight pitch of who you are and what you can offer them . . . in an engaging fashion of course.
This is a tough for me. Sometimes I hit it, but other times I don’t. And it’s usually when I have not prepped well for my Elevator Pitch.
What are your secrets to a successful pitch?
Welcome to October! Let the candy gluttony begin. 🙂