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Developing a compelling "Elevator Pitch"

(also known as a "Personal Brand Statement")

What is an "Elevator Pitch"?

An "Elevator Pitch" is a concise, carefully planned, and well-practiced description about you or your company that your mother should be able to understand in the time it would take to ride up an elevator.

It is also a succinct statement that clarifies and communicates what makes you and your unique value proposition different and special. It will allow you to comfortably and confidently answer that familiar question of: So, what do you do? Or, tell me about yourself.

Whether you're seeking a job, customers, votes, a partnership, or simply understanding, you have to know what to say and how to say it when faced with the opportunity to meet a key decision-maker. Perfecting your elevator pitch helps you explain yourself clearly, giving you an edge in all of your communications.

Don’t wing it! Preparation is the key to confidence and the key to making a lasting, positive, and memorable first impression. Take action now!

Elevator Pitch

Tips for success:
  • Make the person you’re talking to want to know more about what you have to offer – this is the most important goal, as it’s the purpose of an elevator pitch.
  • What you really want is for the person to ask, "HOW do you do that?" – or, “Wow, I’d like to see!”, which opens up further dialogue.
  • Be authentic. Most people can see right through you if you are trying to be someone you are not. If you are naturally upbeat, great. If you tend to be on the quiet side, that’s fine.
  • Know your target. Your pitch is far more likely to be accurate if you know your target. Everything you say has to be aimed at your listener and center on what you, your service or product can do for them.
  • Make sure your pitch is about them. Don't waste time highlighting your awards, your record or other markers of your success, unless you know how those relate to what your listener needs to hear.
  • Find the uniqueness of what you're offering and be able to explain why your audience should care.
  • Be passionate. People are drawn to folks who exude excitement about what they do.
  • Figure out what your objective is. Do you want to tell people about a new service? Did your firm just win an award? Are you beginning a partnership that will expand your firm’s delivery time? Knowing what your objective is helps you formulate the right message.
  • Be flexible enough to be guided by your listener. If he or she interrupts with questions, make sure you answer them.
  • Let your listener hear the commitment in your voice and your words. Let them see your involvement with direct eye contact and confident body language.
  • Develop a variety of short blurbs, and mix ‘em up so you don’t repeat the same thing every time you open your mouth.
  • Dress for success! Communications is not only about what you say and how you say it. Too trendy, too sexy, or too kooky may negate anything of value you have to offer.
  • Act friendly in a schmooze-free way. Add in a smile, confident handshake and direct eye contact to make a powerful impression.
  • Compelling conversations are two-way streets, so say your piece and then shut up and listen. Another great thing about listening: it enables you to discover new information, great ideas and possibly valuable contacts that may be in the other person’s network.
  • Keep it short and concise, powerful prose is tough, but important. People are inherently lazy and the last thing you want to do is turn a contact off because you made them work to understand your idea.
  • One Size Does Not Fit All One last word of advice: remember that not every pitch is right for every elevator. That’s why you need more than one. Work hard to create 3-5 distinct elevator pitches.
  • Give your listener something to do with the information they've just received. Make clear what you want to have happen and the suggestions or alternatives you are proposing. Talk about next steps, and make sure the action you want them to take is clearly understood.
  • If you only have 5 seconds, just state the WHO and the WHAT. Example: "Hi. I'm Ken Diamond. I help job seekers market themselves differently to land job offers more quickly.

Multi-purposing your Elevator Pitch - Here are some additional uses for your carefully crafted Elevator Pitch:
  • Your email signature line: Why not include it with every email you send out? It doesn’t have to be your full pitch, even just one or two sentences that clearly identify what you do.
  • Website welcome/about page: Your home page is the first place people land, why not welcome them with your new introduction. Or, use it as an additional description in your about page.
  • Backside of business card: Handing someone your card means they’ll be walking away with the introduction they just heard. Having it on your card will help them remember what you do.
  • On-line networking profiles: If you’re using social networking to promote your business, it’s a great idea to have your elevator pitch in your profile so that people “get” what you’re all about right away. And if you’ve piqued their interest, will lead them to your website.
  • Marketing pieces (brochures, flyers, etc): If you’re sending promotional material out into the world, you might as well tell them a little bit more about your business – even if it’s just in a sentence or two.
  • Outgoing voicemail message: If your business requires a lot of phone communication, consider adding a line or two from your pitch in your outgoing message. This will reassure the caller that they’re calling the right person who can help them.
  • Introduction letters/phone calls: You’re making an introduction anyway, why not start off with your elevator pitch – you can always elaborate.

Sample Pitch:

People often miss the boat connecting on great job opportunities and take 2nd place in job interviews because they don’t differentiate or spend the appropriate time to prepare effectively in today’s challenging job market. (for what could be a life changing event)

Based on my successful background in sales, sales training and ownership of a successful recruiting firm for the past ten years, I have developed a powerful on-line tool that helps job seekers market themselves to get job offers faster.

WinTheView.com helps people create a compelling interview presentation that can be used before, during and after the interview to impress the hiring team. It also provides template based tools to build career accomplishment stories, an elevator pitch and follow up letters for a professional approach.

Benefits for the job seeker include a bolstered sense of confidence, differentiation from other job candidates, and thorough preparation which sets the job seeker apart from the pack.

I would like to take you through this easy to use, on-line process to show you how thousands of job seekers have used WinTheView to stand out and get great job offers more quickly” When would be a good time to schedule this?

Ken Diamond
Founder & CEO, WinTheView.com

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