Just last week I was speaking with one of my favorite new clients who has been struggling to drum up business as quickly as he’d hoped.
Speaking with him about his goals and how he’d been promoting his company, it became apparent he didn’t have the most realistic idea of how successful businesses get started. In fact, he was way off.
Evidently, he’s one of the many entrepreneurs who learns the hard way that being a good person and offering a valuable service isn’t all it takes to lure customers.
Of course, in his mind he’s doing everything right; and really, he has made a good start, but good marketing doesn’t happen overnight or just because you put a sign out front. It builds over time.
As a cash-strapped entrepreneur, understanding how you can build your marketing up – at no additional cost to you – is a precious, precious thing. Plus it might save you some frustration and give you a place to put all that pent up energy!
The first thing you’ve got to do to maximize your marketing power is make sure your elevator pitch is polished.
Never underestimate the pitch.
If you already know what an elevator pitch is, skip to the bold one-liner below. If you don’t, READ ON!
So, what is an elevator pitch? Simply put, it’s a concise, powerful, and information-packed script that you know so well you could deliver it flawlessly while cooking a 5-course meal.
That’s a little dramatic, but you probably get the point. The name says it all; it’s a pitch about you and your business that’s short enough to start and end on an elevator ride. And we’re not talking sky rise.
It’s easy to assemble your elevator pitch; all you need to include is:
- What you do (what you provide)
- Why what you sell is valuable (what’s in it for them?)
- How you stand out (why are you different or notable)
In my client’s case; he’s a massage therapist. He specializes in deep tissue and sports massage. What’s unique about him is he offers trigger point therapy, which is a targeted type of massage that requires special training and helps to relieve chronic pain and tension.
His pitch might look something like:
“It’s nice to meet you; my name is Michael. I’m a massage therapist with a private office downtown. I offer all kinds of massage, but I specialize in deep tissue and trigger point – which is one of the most natural and effective ways to ease chronic pain and mobility issues.”
He is meeting all three primary points and giving a little soft information as well by giving the listener a general idea of his company location.
Bonus: If he had any special offers running for new clients, he could share that as well. But only if he thinks the listener would be genuinely interested, otherwise it could sound pushy in an introduction.
“If you know anyone who’s interested, I am running a special right now where the first hour-long massage for new clients is only $60.”
Why does the elevator pitch work so well?
A previous employer of mine referred to short monologues like the elevator pitch as a chance to “load their lip” which is a great euphemism because it’s absolutely true.
While you’re delivering a whole pitch, your audience is only going to remember a fraction of it.
Soundbites. Excerpts. Blurbs. Little informational titles they can attach to the image of your face in their mind.
When they leave the conversation; if you’ve given a good pitch, you’ve just made a connection with someone who will take your message and share it. If you load their lip with the kind of easy to remember, critical information that makes you a good person to know.
Seriously; who doesn’t want to know a fabulous massage therapist, or marketer, or graphic designer? They’ll remember you if you do it right!
There’s a lot of beauty in giving your elevator pitch, once you’re comfortable with the idea of it.
- It’s totally free.
- It helps you engage people everywhere you go.
- It’s a perfect icebreaker for getting others to deliver their elevator pitch back to you.
- It will help you build connections.
One Last Takeaway for giving the best elevator pitch of your life:
When you deliver your pitch remember – you’re not a robot. You’re trying to make new contacts, and you want to show that you’re passionate about what you do.
It’s almost like making friends. Just relax, and converse. Let the stress and tension of trying to recite it verbatim float away. You don’t need to be perfect; as long as you include the big three, you’ll do just fine.
What’s your elevator pitch? How has it grown and evolved with your business?