We live in a world of talkers. We chat on our cellphones, email, blogs, Twitter and Facebook. We are constantly telling people who we are, what we do and what we think. But are we doing it in a clear way that helps others understand how our company can help them? No one really wants to hear your elevator pitch, so you have to make it too the point.
Can you tell someone who you are and what you do in 15 seconds or less?
This is actually a long time since the average adult attention span is eight seconds.
Why is this so important? In reality, most of us will stop listening after 15 seconds and if you can’t get someone interested right away, you have lost. Telling someone what you and your business do in this amount of time is a talent and needs to be practiced word for word. Do not plan to ad lib this part or depend on your improvisational skills.
When putting together your elevator pitch, ask these questions:
1. What is your mission? What is your brand?
For example, I am the “Unstuck Guy.” I help small-business owners get out of their funk and move forward. I apply simple and strategic steps to get a business growing again.
Where to Start: Complete the sentence, “I am the _______________,” or, “people know me because I am the best at ____________________.”
2. What are your voice and values? How will people know it’s you?
For example, I use self-deprecating humor, story-telling, and extreme passion to communicate and connect with other people. I tell them to forget the entrepreneur’s dream version of Disneyland. You will never be Bill Gates or Richard Branson. I clear the path of all those broken promises and faded dreams. I tell the truth about what it’s really like to own a business and how each person can be successful by starting from where they are.
Where to Start: Think about your unique style: serious, funny, or straightforward? How do you connect with other people? Ask others about their impression of you.
3. Who is your community?
For example, I serve established small businesses that have been in business for multiple years. These owners have enough experience with their business to relate to the challenges we face. They are at a stage in their business where their progress and success are far from what they expected, and they consider themselves either in a bad patch, confused or trapped. The demographic includes men and women business owners between 35 and 55 with revenues over $1 million.
Where to Start: Look at your current clients. What is the profile you now serve? Is this the community you want to be serving?
Tell me about yourself. I am listening for 15 seconds.