Nobody thinks higher of your small business than you do. It’s your baby. You conceived it, worked hard to put together a solid business plan and guided it through its infantile stages to maturity. You’re the one who’s spilled the blood, sweat and tears to get it to where it is today.
Being able to channel that passion into an elevator pitch for investors and customers is a vital skill that can be difficult to harness. Not being able to boil down your enthusiasm and love for your product or service into a bite-size morsel for others’ consumption can be detrimental to your ability to grow. Read on to learn more about elevator pitches and how you can become proficient in crafting them.
What is an elevator pitch?
An elevator pitch or elevator speech is basically a short sales pitch. The name is derived from the concept of being able to sell your small business’ service or products within the time frame in which you’d share an elevator ride with somebody. This means being able to communicate the most important parts of your enterprise succinctly and clearly.
The top 3 dos and don’ts for elevator pitches
Here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to crafting your elevator pitch.
- Identify a problem and solution
This should be the foundation upon which you build your case. You need to be able to present an issue facing a portion of the population or a certain industry. Then clearly communicate how your product or service can act as a solution for that problem.
- Highlight your team
You’re not just selling your product or service in an elevator pitch. You’re also selling yourself and the rest of your team. You need to be able to explain why the group you’ve assembled can see the idea through to fruition. Mention past successes you have had together or appropriate schooling or other experiences that make you uniquely qualified to take care of business.
- Acknowledge competition
Your product or service will be successful because you provide something that is of higher quality or less expensive than current alternatives. Make sure to touch upon this competition in your elevator pitch to exhibit that you’ve considered who or what you’re going against and how you plan to come out on top.
- Give your life story
The details of the inspiration behind your small business are probably very interesting and might be a story worth telling at some point. But that point is not when trying to sell somebody on your product or service in the matter of a minute or two. Leave the flowery background out if possible unless it’s absolutely vital to your pitch. Hopefully you do well enough to get a chance to get into the genesis of your company at a later date.
- Batter them with numbers
Having hard data to back up your claims can be supremely beneficial to your chances of impressing your audience. But too many stats can be confusing and muddle the brain of whomever you’re trying to impress. Feel free to include some stats on your pitch deck that are key to the overall concept of your company, but don’t dive into the nitty gritty here.
- Forget the next steps
Just because an elevator speech is a short sales pitch doesn’t mean you can just consider yourself finished within a couple minutes. Inquire about another, hopefully much longer, meeting after your presentation. Also, be prepared to share more in-depth documents with investors. Be ready to turn over pitch decks, both ones you used in your elevator speech and others you’ve created.
What you can do to improve your elevator pitch
They say slow and steady wins the race, but it certainly won’t win your elevator pitch any awards. You’ll want to ascribe to adjectives such as succinct, simple, swift and short if you want to craft the best elevator speech. Here are a few behaviours you can employ to get the most out of your elevator pitch.
- Be confident
- Speak clearly and comfortably
- Connect with your audience
These tips, which you can carry with you into any business environment or interaction, will keep you from turning your two-minute elevator speech into a jumbled, hectic mess of ideas and facts. Such personality traits can be the difference between somebody shutting off within the first 10 seconds of your presentation and having them dying to know more.
Elevator pitches are short. But don’t think you can just wing them. Their concise nature means each and every word counts. If you put in the effort to hone your skills, you’ll be able to go in with a clear plan and be confident in yourself, your team and your company. For more small business tips, check out the Saxons blog today.