Elevator pitch is pretty common in the corporate world. Indeed, it can make a drastic change and benefit your career in more ways than you can imagine. But what is the elevator pitch, and how can you use it to its full potential? As it's famously said,
"The purpose of an elevator pitch is to describe a situation or solution so compelling that the person you're with wants to hear more even after the elevator ride is over."
Yes, elevator pitch or speech refers to a quick synopsis of your background. It's meant to give the listener a peek into your experiences and what you have to offer. It's called the elevator pitch because it should be concise enough to be completed during a brief elevator ride.
In that short duration, you have to give your listener an introduction about yourself, your job, and what you aspire to do. You have to share your credentials and leave the listener wanting more.
Elevator speech can work as an excellent introductory piece about yourself, wherein you can use it for networking. The idea is to make the beginning so compelling that others would want to hear more of it even when the elevator ride is over. Sounds interesting, doesn't it?
Are you still unclear and want to know more about what the elevator pitch is? Here is an example.
It's such a pleasure to meet you finally. How's work? I heard something about your team having communication issues. I experienced the same with my team. But adding project management software into the routine really helped. There was a marked improvement. I hope you too find something that will work.
If you notice carefully, in this brief interaction, the person conveyed a solution to a problem faced by the listener, formed a connection, and left him wanting to know more. Do you understand the drill now?
How To Use The Elevator Pitch?
Elevator pitches and speeches actually work quite well in a lot of scenarios. You can use them at career expos or in your LinkedIn summary to make people take notice. It's also an excellent way to introduce yourself to the company's representatives during job interviews.
Elevator pitches work quite well at networking events too. For instance, when you attend a professional meeting or event, you can present your pitch to those you meet to connect with them instantly.
Of course, you have to tweak your elevator pitch according to the situation and the listener. As Steve Woodruff rightly said,
"You don't fly to another country and expect the residents to speak your language. You have to communicate with speech they understand. Winning business involves speaking human, not spewing jargon."
So, ensure that you adjust your elevator speech depending on who you are communicating with.
What Characteristics Should Define Your Elevator Pitch?
Now you know what the elevator pitch is. But how do you use it? Before we discuss how to write an elevator pitch, let's talk a bit about the fine details that should always be kept in mind.
- Ensure that your elevator speech is brief and completes within 30 to 60 seconds.
- Make it persuasive.
- Don't forget to mention your skills.
- Always practice making your elevator pitch as often as possible.
- Make the pitch positive and flexible.
How To Write An Elevator Pitch That Captivates The Listeners?
You aren't the first one to be nervous about pitching yourself. It's actually more common than you realize. But we will explain all the steps that will make it easier for you to create the pitch that really gets the job done.
Want to know how to write an elevator pitch that delivers? Let's find out!
Identify The Goal
This is something that you should have done before you even write the first word. Who do you intend to pitch to? Are you looking to gain the attention of a financer for a new business idea? Or wish to land a job at some company? Perhaps you are trying to land a client. Your purpose could simply be to connect with colleagues too.
How to write your elevator pitch depends significantly on what you expect to achieve with it. But of course, all elevator speeches should have these features in common.
- They should grab the attention of the listener
- It should ignite curiosity
- They should summarize your skills
- They should leave the scope for questions.
And don't forget to carry a business card with you always. After all, the listener must be given the means to connect with you later if he wants. Business cards make you appear more professional. Now, let's start with the writing.
It's best to begin the elevator pitch with a brief introduction of who you are. Develop a list as to how you would describe yourself to the audience you are addressing.
For instance, if you want to land a job with the pitch, introduce yourself and talk a bit about your qualification and skills in a compelling way.
Hi. I am Susan Jones. I have just graduated from Princeton.
Hi. I am David Ross. I work as a manager at X company and am on the lookout for more opportunities.
Shed Some Light On Your Skills
Now that the listener knows who you are, it's time to tell him what you have to offer. What do you do? Focus on meaningful skills that you want the person to remember. You have limited time and therefore can only talk about a couple of things.
What skills make you a valuable part of any team? The purpose is to let the listener get a peek into your priorities and capabilities. You can let him know about your interests that you think will be relevant to him.
Let's give you an example.
You know, last summer, I volunteered to work at a nonprofit organization committed to educating the underprivileged. And that made me realize that I really want to pursue a career in education.
My economics course has really helped me realize my potential in investments and stocks. And I have managed to generate profits myself steadily in the past year.
End The Speech With A Question
It's best always to end your elevator pitch with a question. It could be a question to request advice or share information or simply to stay connected. Remember, you should always end the elevator pitch on a note that gives power to the listener. You have said what you wanted to say, and now it's up to him to reach out to you.
Tie It Together
Once you have written the parts of your pitch, you have to compile them in such a way that captivates your listeners.
Don't forget to read it aloud and note its duration. Your target should be to get done with the whole thing within 30 seconds. You don't want to lose your listeners' attention or feel like the conversation is completely one-sided.
Things To Avoid In An Elevator Pitch
You are well aware of how to write an elevator pitch by now. But it's easy to get carried away. So here are some mistakes that you should refrain from.
- Avoid speaking too fast. You have to convey the information in a short duration, but you need to give listeners enough time to absorb your message.
- Don't ramble and appear unclear during your pitch. Always give time to the listener to respond to what you have to say.
- Don't use a monotone during the pitch. Yes, you need to practice the pitch but not make it sound too rehearsed. Keep it natural and appear confident.
- Keep your listeners interested with your mannerism and expression.
- Don't confine to a single pitch. Adjust it according to what you are communicating with.
Use Elevator Pitches To Their Full Potential!
"There are ten thousand opportunities on the horizon. The pie keeps growing and, in a rapidly evolving marketplace, white spaces and blue oceans will continue to surround us." ― Steve Woodruff
Yes, the world is full of opportunities. And you don't want to lose out on an excellent one simply because you didn't speak up when you should have. Imagine that you are a writer who always wanted to be published. You ran into the editor of your favorite magazine but couldn't communicate with him? Sounds like a missed chance, doesn't it?
Having an elevator pitch ready ensures that you don't lose out on something you have been waiting for a long time.
Remember, everyone's busy these days. No one has the time or interest to wait for you to search for the right words. People will quickly lose interest if they feel you have nothing to say. Not only that, it wouldn't create a very favorable impression of you.
So make sure that you are always ready to let others know who you are, what your skills are, and how you can be of value to them. Practice your elevator pitch so much that it flows naturally whenever the right opportunity comes along.
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