What do you do?
It is one of the most common questions asked, yet also one of the hardest to answer.
Many people misunderstand the reason for an elevator pitch, and think the right pitch will create a sale. Instead of being the end of the sales process, an elevator pitch is the start of a conversation, hopefully one that leads to future business and long term relationships.
Most elevator pitches focus on the work you do, not your client’s pain. But clients don’t hire you for the work, they hire you for the results – to solve their problems and ease their pain, and your pitch should reflect this.
An elevator pitch should readily identify:
- your ideal client
- their pain or problem
- the product or service you offer
- the results you deliver
The shorter the pitch the better. Here is a simple fill-in-the-blank pitch:
I help (ideal client) with (pain or problem) by (product or service) so they (results)
I help fashion startups who are struggling with their online presence, by creating dynamic websites that generate more traffic.
Like any skill, a pitch improves with practice. You can practice your pitch walking down the street, driving in your car or alone at home. The more you practice and the more comfortable you are with your pitch, the more natural you will sound.
There is no one-size fits all pitch. Your pitch may change depending on when, where and who you are talking with. In fact, an email can also be used to pitch, and the same rules apply. With an email pitch, you should also include your name and contact information, and end with a call to action.
Remember, your pitch is your headline. You don’t need to say everything about who you are and what you do, you simply need them interested enough to continue the conversation.