The BizFilings blog covering business tips and trends.
Be Ready for the Elevator
Published on Oct 24, 2012
Read our article, 'Be Ready for the Elevator' at 'Time to Start Up,' the small business blog by BizFilings.
By Adam Toren
Your elevator pitch is a concise, edifying, and inspiring speech that you should have prepared at all times. It’s an ideal time to speak confidently about your business and present its unique aspects. As an entrepreneur, you have the responsibility to summarize the unique qualities of your product or service when the opportunity presents itself. Your pitch should be short yet illuminating, genial yet professional, and you should be able to deliver it with poise and style.
Your elevator pitch is your way of capitalizing on casual meetings that can instantly change into business opportunities. You may not meet someone specifically in the elevator, but you never know if a potential client or investor is waiting just around the corner. Parties, conferences, conventions, walks, waiting on line in a store, the list is endless. Smalltalk invariably leads to the question, “So what do you do?” Be prepared with an answer that you and your business deserve. Having a pitch rehearsed and ready will prevent you from succumbing to the biggest defeater of personal or professional success; regret.
Hold the Door
Your pitch should convey your passion and enthusiasm to your listener. Their curiosity should be piqued and they should be anticipating further information. Remember, this isn’t a verbal job application. Don’t drone on about your qualifications and entrepreneurial triumphs. Focus on the emotional aspects of your product or service and try to make your listener relate to these emotions. A great elevator pitch can be as short as one sentence, punctuated with a handing off of a business card. If your pitch intrigues, your listener will remember you when the time is right.
Top Floor Please
Your elevator pitch should always be evolving and growing with your business. Keep it fresh by making appropriate updates. Remember, no one knows your business as well as you. Ultimately, you’re the face of your product or service. You’re the essence of the “brand” that you’re trying to create. What makes your business stand out in the crowd? What can you convey that will entice your listener? Really put in some effort and time to perfecting and editing your elevator pitch. Practice your pitch in the mirror. Record it and listen for verbal hesitations or uninspired word choices. You want it sounding smooth and alluring.
Take the Stairs?
You should have a few key variations of your pitch ready for different audiences. You can alter your language and tone to speak convincingly to listeners that expect and desire different things. Your pitch should be capable of changing shape to highlight specific characteristics of your business that you feel will appeal to your listener. Maybe it’s an ideal time to mention your competitive prices. Or maybe it’s the appropriate time to focus your listener’s attention on your creative marketing techniques. Don’t be afraid of adjusting your pitch when the time is right.
Your elevator pitch is your moment to set your business apart and showcase your professionalism. What’s the best elevator pitch you’ve ever heard? Tell us about it with a comment.