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BLOGElevator Pitch – Going Up

by Randall CraigFiled in: Blog, Business Development, Communication, Make It Happen Tipsheet, Professional DevelopmentTagged as: ,

You’re in the elevator, or waiting in line at the coffee shop, and someone says to you “Aren’t we going to meet in just a few minutes? Tell me about yourself…”

While you may not be ready to meet the person right then and there, the opportunity to make a positive impression is one that you do not want to miss. The term Elevator Pitch itself comes from the metaphor of the elevator: your “pitch” must be made before the elevator stops and the doors open.

But what makes a great elevator pitch great?

Most importantly, remember that the person you are speaking to doesn’t really care about you: they only care about how you can solve their problems. With this in mind, you will need to describe yourself in a way that actually adds value to the listener: it can be one sentence, or five. Some guidelines:

  • The importance of research: if you don’t know the issues, then how will you know what is important to them?
  • The elevator pitch must be framed in terms that are benefits to the listener.
  • The pitch should contain some emotion or passion — but don’t over do it.
  • The pitch should never sound contrived or rehearsed – it must appear spontaneous and authentic.


Write a 20 second elevator pitch for yourself, and record it. Does it pass the litmus test of being listener-focused, or is it exclusively about “me”? Look for a few opportunities this week to test-drive a customized version with these new contacts. Each time you use say it will increase your comfort, and your confidence.

Marketing insight:  Elevator pitches are for organizations as well.  The challenge is that everyone – not just you – will need to be singing the same tune.  And they will need to be doing it in person, as well as online in Social Media.

Does this topic resonate? Reach out to Randall: he can present it to your group.  (More presentation topics)
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