The elevator pitch
How to sell yourself in 30 seconds
We’ve all been there: You think you’ve done your homework and are perfectly prepared for an important business meeting. You know all the facts about your conversational partner’s company and think there’s nothing that could break your stride.
But then these stupid little questions catch you completely off guard: “What makes your service so special? What makes your product stand out?” And suddenly you’re lost for words. Of course, you know why your product is so unique – but in that very moment, you’re simply unable to put it into words.
We have a simple trick to avoid these kinds of situations in the future. Think up an elevator pitch!
... elevator what?
The elevator pitch is a useful method to present your idea, brand or product in a clear and concise way. The basic thinking behind it: What you have to say shouldn’t take longer than the average elevator ride, i.e. about 30 seconds.
How to turn your elevator pitch into a success
To draw up a convincing elevator pitch, it makes sense to start with your business plan. After all, it contains all relevant facts about your company. Take these as a basis and wrap them up in a nice “packaging”.
You might ask yourself: “How do I do this? There’s so much that needs saying!”. For a start, you could try the AIDA model. It contains all relevant aspects that need to be covered in your elevator pitch.
- A as in “Attention”: Whether your pitch will be able to grab your audience’s attention, is decided in the very first seconds. That’s why it’s a good idea to start with an unusual question, some impressive facts or a funny anecdote to break the ice. Anything’s possible as long as you stay professional!
- I as in “Interest”: You have your conversational partner’s attention? Great! Now it’s about presenting the most important facts in a clear and precise way.
- D as in “Desire”: Don’t lose focus! After all, your pitch is about selling your business. Try to get your conversational partner hooked on your business model.
- A as in “Action”: Show your motivation and enthusiasm and outline the next steps of your project! This will help your audience grasp the importance and potential success of your idea.
Keep in mind: Don’t go into too much detail! The objective of any elevator pitch is always to instigate a follow-up discussion. That’s where you can present your idea in more detail.
Ideas are silver, conversations are golden
Elevator pitches are not just about a good concept. They are also about the way you talk. Speak confidently and clearly so that people don’t notice your nerves.
Keep your pitch simple. Explain your concept as if you were talking to someone who is completely new to the topic.
Evoke emotions. This works best if you use figurative language and positive associations that make your words more memorable.
Show your audience that you completely and utterly believe in your idea. Trust us: Your passion has the power to convince and enthuse others! Stick to what’s essential and don’t digress. After all, you only have 30 seconds!
Tips for creating the perfect elevator pitch
First, think about your brand. The following questions will help you:
- What’s your company’s brand promise in regard to your target group?
- What makes your brand so unique?
- What differentiates your product from your competitors?
- What are the characteristics of your brand?
- How would you describe your brand’s personality if it was a human being?
Grab a piece of paper and write down your elevator pitch. And don’t forget: Keep it short and simple. Focus only on positive aspects and strengths. Avoid unnecessary fillers and complex technical terms. Instead, use simple words and phrases that are easy to understand.
No two pitches are the same – the different types of pitches
You’re not quite sure how to structure your pitch? Don’t worry, we have a few examples for you!
- All-purpose pitch: A general presentation that allows you to present your arguments in a clear and intuitive way. Depending on the situation or your audience, this type of pitch can easily be expanded or shortened.
- Pixar pitch: Tell your story! This type of pitch isn’t named after the famous animation studio for nothing. Try to enthral and win over your audience with a vivid story.
- Sales pitch: This type of pitch directly addresses your potential customers. Focus on addressing their needs and wishes. Consider opening your pitch with a rhetorical question to get your audience involved right from the start.
One last piece of advice: Before presenting your pitch to an important business partner, try it on a friend or colleague. He grasped the general idea? Congratulations, you’re ready to rock your pitch!