Go Outside Your Box When Thinking of Your Elevator Pitch

Have you ever struggled to come up with an effective “elevator pitch”?  One that you thought really captured who you are and the value you provide without saying too much or being too confusing?

As Steve Jobs famously said, simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. But sometimes trying to keep it short and sweet can be impossibly difficult. Especially when it comes to describing who we are and why we matter in just a sentence or two.

For many people this can be paralyzing. After all, what if we leave out something that would have resonated with the listener? What if we sound inexperienced because we tried to keep it short? Will it leave the listener unimpressed? Will they think it sounds canned and corny? This is why I for one have always hated the elevator pitch.

Until, I started to think about it differently. This new perspective really worked for me; perhaps it will be a help to you as well.

For starters, stop pressuring yourself into thinking of your pitch as a sentence that needs to make an immediate sale. It doesn’t need to do that much. An effective pitch just needs to engage the listener enough for them to want to hear more. The real key here is to remember that the pitch is actually not about you. It’s about them. Your value is not what you do; it’s what you do for others.

Also, keep in mind that your pitch needs to appeal to a 21st century audience. What do I mean by this? You need to be mindful that you are competing for your listeners’ attention with their smartphone, the television, the person standing next to them, and a whole host of other distractions. So try to keep it brief. Also, skip the industry buzzwords and speak plainly. Often using jargon does more to confuse or otherwise turn-off the listener than to engage them.

And finally, think strategically about your pitch.  Ask yourself, “after hearing my pitch, what do I want someone to know?” Or, “What do I want them to feel, or do?” Make sure your pitch answers these questions.

Now go out there and wow them!

Was this a help? If so, do me a favor and share this mother like wildfire!



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