Do you have an elevator pitch at the ready? Elevator pitches are short summaries, usually about thirty seconds long, that concisely sum up your small business. The term “elevator pitch” stems from the idea that yours could theoretically be given during an elevator ride from the top to bottom floors. It’s just the right amount of time to meet a potential partner, employee, or client and make a lasting impression.
A solid pitch will include the who, what, and how—and sometimes why—that helps anyone inside or outside the industry understand the basics of your small business. Find out what makes a good elevator pitch and why every small business needs one as part of its business strategy.
How to Create an Elevator Pitch
When working on your elevator pitch, think of how you can frame what you do and what your goals are into a few conversational sentences. Include one or two open-ended statements or questions that allow your audience to jump in and respond to your pitch. Otherwise, they may not be able to connect with what you’re saying or continue the conversation after stepping off the proverbial elevator.
It’s also a good idea to narrow your goal; for example, are you looking to recruit new talent, connect with potential clients, or partner with other businesses? Your answer may help guide the flow and intentionality behind your elevator pitch.
Say your elevator pitch enough times to yourself to establish a casual rhythm then practice it on coworkers and friends outside the company. This can help you feel comfortable speaking with people who may already know you and your small business who can provide key feedback and support.
Reasons You Need One
Elevator pitches are important for all small business strategies—no matter the industry. They help prep you for a first impression and network with potential leads.
By preparing ahead of time rather than winging it in the moment, a well-practiced elevator pitch can help you project confidence. You’re ready to give it at any time and can take advantage of any opportunity. Otherwise, you may worry or overthink what to say in the moment and give the wrong impression to a future client, business partner, or employee.
Your elevator pitch can also help you network. As a small business, talking and networking is a large part of your everyday work and how you expand your business. By getting others interested in what you do and how your company operates, you can quickly gain traction with new people and opportunities. An elevator pitch is a great way to show your personable and intellectual sides and connect with others. Even if they decide not to do business with you or join the company, an elevator pitch still gets your name out there.
Aside from great first impressions and networking, you can use an elevator pitch in many different ways—they aren’t just for elevators, after all. A well scripted summary can go a long way in other social settings, such as conventions, meetings, and consultations. They work for run-ins on the street and orchestrated events alike. You can even use an elevator pitch for marketing materials, including company descriptions on social media. There’s no limit to where, when, or how you can take advantage of your thirty-second introduction.
How to Get Started
Ready to develop your own elevator pitch or not exactly sure what to say? If narrowing your company goals or overview sounds intimidating and you’ve hit a wall, an Advicoach small business coach can help you talk about what’s next.