What is an Elevator pitch? – Is it talking about a business proposition in an elevator? Definitely not, elevator pitch is much more. It is a short summary of a business, ideally given within 30 seconds. It is a series of short statements that aims to implant an idea in the listener’s mind and impress him to the extent that he would want to know more. The Elevator Pitch is a Small Talk in the Elevator day in and day out.
It is not as easy as it sounds and requires lots of practice and research. A company needs to undergo many stages to develop and deliver an ideal elevator pitch. Elevator pitch is important to today’s fast paced world, where time, is money. People with money tend to be busy, so they think ‘short’. A lot of people confuse elevator pitch with sales pitches.
“An elevator pitch, elevator speech or elevator statement is a short summary used to quickly and simply define a process, product, service, organization, or event and its value proposition.” – Wikipedia.
The key factors you need to know before delivering an elevator pitch.
Know your target audience –
This is a crucial step for an elevator pitch. Populate a list, find out what their goals, objectives, strengths and weaknesses are. Mull over the hurdles they face to fulfill these objectives and achieve their goals. Most important is to know what they are willing to give to achieve these goals. By using buyer persona, you can narrow down the needs of your target audience and devise solutions for that one, most important hurdle they face.
What can you do for them, your USP –
Don’t act like a sales person, act like a problem solver. Describe your solution to their problem at a high level, in just few sentences. Use plain language. For example, a customized software designer company knows the customer is having problems with maintenance of their stock inventory and because of that they are losing money and credibility in market. An appropriate pitch here would be – “companies hire us to streamline their inventory, saving on average a million dollars a year”. A not so appropriate pitch would be “we sell inventory systems”. See the difference?
Now that the solution is given, differentiate yourself from your competition. Ensure that you are delivering a unique solution to your customer. Millennials are the core mainstays of the hospitality industry. This is an impatient generation that grew up with internet. They want what they want. They want it now. A hotel chains that offers faster booking, faster check-in and faster Wi-Fi can carry the day.
Tell them about your business partners –
There is no point selling solutions to your customers when you do not have right people on board. You have to have them and you definitely need to let your customers know that you have them. You must talk about why you and your business partners are right team to execute their vision. Tell them why your team’s skill set is precisely what is need to lead to their company to success.
Financial Aspect –
There is no need to describe your whole business model or your company’s 5 years plan. You just need to tell the audience in the simplest of ways what gets you the revenue and how your bills are paid. You just need to give an assurance to your customer that you are building a profitable company.
Here you need to talk about your achievements and milestones, especially the the one that fits right up the customer’s alley. If you don’t have any yet, no fear. Talk about your goals instead, as if you are about to achieve them. Do not mislead.
Call to action –
Final but another crucial step. Always keep in mind the elevator pitch is not a monologue. Absolutely not. It a dialogue. Even better if it’s a conversation. Always give open-end replies and make sure to ask for meeting or a follow-up at your target’s ‘convenience’.
Conclusion: Elevator pitch is delivered only to engage with the people and create curiosity for a product and service. A short statement of your business or service that interests your audience enough to want to hear more.
Editor Note: The above article is inspired by the savvy elevator pitching tips by Holiday Inn Express, #HolidayInnExpress