Like most other communication, keep it simple, informative and fun.
The ‘Elevator Pitch’, the ’60 Second Pitch’, it doesn’t really matter what you call it, the task in hand is to get an effective message over to your audience in a short amount of time.
Stems from the idea of getting into an elevator on the top floor with someone important to you and that you’ve been wanting to meet for a long time. You then have a finite amount of uninterrupted time before the elevator reaches the ground-floor. Please note ‘elevator’ is the American term for a lift – it doesn’t sound the same if you call it your ‘Lift Pitch’.
Your message needs to be short and effective
Why so important?
Relationship building starts here!
First impressions can be lasting, for good or for bad. When delivered properly your pitch is a powerful tool that highlights the unique aspects of you or your business while paving the way for questions and further conversation.
Great connections are made face-to-face and often the best aren’t planned. A well-practised pitch will ensure you’re prepared to make the most from that connection, but remember your goal is not to close a sale - be prepared to help your audience to understand what you are about, and what you can do for them.
Where do you start?
Put yourself in the position of your listener, and talk about how you offer a solution to a problem without going into great detail. Leave openings for questions and to encourage engagement.
Offer the solution now and the detail later
It can be harder than you first think but here are a few pointers to get you started.
Your pitch should normally take no longer than 30-60 seconds.
Use language that everyone understands. Don't use fancy words thinking it will make you sound smarter. Your listener may not understand you, and you'll have lost your opportunity to hook them. Only use jargon when you know your listener can understand.
Keep it simple by avoiding jargon
Use words that are powerful and strong without being over the top! Words that create a visual image in your listeners mind. This will make your message memorable.
Listen to the other person. It’s not only polite, and can help you understand them and tailor your pitch to them.
Make sure to tailor the pitch to the audience
Tell a Story. A short story ….. that is.
A great elevator pitch is aimed for a specific audience. If you have target audiences that are vastly different, you might want to have a unique pitch for each.
A good elevator pitch is designed with a specific outcome in mind. What is your desired outcome? You may have different pitches depending on different objectives. For instance do you want to: arrange a meeting, gain a prospect, enlist support for an idea, or earn a referral.
Has a hook.
This is the element that literally snags your listener's interest and makes them want to know more. This is the phrase or words that strike a chord with your listener.
Closure or ‘call to action’.
Make sure you are both aware of the next step e.g. arranging a meeting.
Have a call to action ready
Features and Benefits.
Talk about the benefits of what you are offering to the audience, not just what you do.
A well-rehearsed pitch doesn’t mean reading it from a script!
Nobody likes listening to a boring person.
….. and don’t forget – practice makes perfect!