Take Your Elevator Speech to the Top
When it comes to marketing yourself or your business, the most affordable, grass roots tactic available to you is your ‘elevator speech.” As most business professionals know, “elevator speech” is slang for the :30 pitch that you have to be ready to deliver at any given moment, whether at a networking event or walking through airport security and running into a long-sought after customer before you both sidle off to lands afar. To deliver an effective elevator speech, or give good talk in any modular situation, one must pay attention to the 3 major elements of a good speech:
TECHNIQUE is the way you approach your elevator speech. You can either hit hard or play the soft serve. Do you want to be perceived as a powerhouse sales force hungry for leads, or do you want to appear as a credible and trustworthy individual with something of value to offer? Although the former shows commitment, the latter is a more strategic approach and may lead to greater engagement. One way to think about it; an elevator speech should not be approached as a sales pitch, but rather an entertaining commercial for you and your brand. Just like a television commercial. If you try to make a sale in this initial introduction, you will most definitely blow any chance you have to actually make a sale at any time. What you want to do is take a lesson from the big brands you see on television commercials, and figure out a way to communicate who you are, what you offer, and why you are special, in a brief but engaging manner…then allow the potential customer to investigate further. A well-crafted elevator speech delivered in a charismatic manner can elicit follow up questions from potential customers and create a deeper level of engagement. For instance, a cardboard box manufacturer, when asked, “what do you do?” might respond proudly with, “I provide businesses the most affordable options for designing and manufacturing their packaging and shipping materials.” Without directly identifying him/herself as a cardboard box salesperson, the rep has used language that might intrigue the potential customer to investigate further into the exact nature of the materials. Also, by addressing the offering as “the most affordable option,” the speech is speaking directly to the needs of any potential customer, and therefore brings us to the second aspect of a good elevator speech, the COMPONENTS. We’ll cover that next time.