Ah, the elevator pitch. The term alone leaves most of us in a cold sweat, searching for excuses to bail. We fumble about, using meaningless buzz words and industry-specific phrases that aren’t universally understood.
I’ve met marketers, sales directors, even CEOs who cannot succinctly explain what their company/product is. And it’s no wonder… mastering the elevator pitch is hard and it’s a constant work in progress. Here are some guidelines for creating your elevator pitch so that when you’re on the spot, you can deliver.
Avoid using flowery, over-complicated language. It can cause further confusion or – even worse – give off the impression of talking down to someone.
Don’t drone on about features, packages, pricing, etc. The elevator pitch is all about the essentials.
Remember: This isn’t the end all be all. Hopefully, your pitch opens the door for a conversation when you can elaborate, answer questions, and provide additional detail. But first, you have to start with something clear and compelling.
Break it down
There are five essential parts to an elevator pitch – and the first one is a gimme to get you started…
1. (Company name) is a 2. (product/industry) that helps 3. (target market) solve/capitalize on 4. (problem or opportunity) by 5. (how you help).
Remember: Your pitch will vary based on audience, setting, etc. This may not be the formula you want to use for a formal presentation when raising capital. But it will come in handy for sales calls and emails, networking events, meetings, or chance run-ins.
It’s not a script
Your elevator pitch shouldn’t be recited word-for-word. It’s a guideline to start a dialog, not just answer a question. Keep it natural and conversational.
Sharpen your saw
Wanna perfect your elevator pitch? Practice and refine it by incorporating video into your strategy. Videos must be quick and punchy to be effective – much like an elevator pitch. The more videos you create and send, the more you’ll comfortable you’ll be with your pitch on the phone and in-person.
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