Thursday, September 6, 2018

Is Your Elevator Pitch Ready?

I have a small task for you. In twenty seconds tell me about yourself. GO!

How did you do? 

Last month at the BBB Mixer (read more about it here), one question I encountered the most was, "so tell me what you do?". It's funny how although I know in my head what I do, knowing how to package it in a twenty-second presentation, in a coherent and interesting way, takes some practice. 

If you've ever been close to crumbling at the “tell me about yourself” part of a job interview or would like to learn how to put your best foot forward at a networking event, then stick with me. 
An elevator pitch is a business term used by professionals, and is a way to sell a company’s products or services in a nutshell. Entrepreneurs use it to summarise the premise of their businesses, and people in general, use it as small talk at social events. It's normally around twenty to sixty seconds long - basically the amount of time it would take for you to move from one floor to another in a lift! 
We're going to learn how to take this concept and use it to form an attention-grabbing pitch. 

Disclaimer: If you are reading this and are a pro at the elevator pitch please note that these principles are for beginners.

These are my three basic elements of an elevator pitch, and I like to call it the SEA principle:
1. Make a statement.
2. Expand on your subject – add more information about your subject or explain why you have made that statement
3. Ask a follow-up question or add a closing statement – invite your listener to also speak or round up your speech.
Now, let's revisit the BBB Mixer. Being in a room with other talented bloggers and business owners, I wanted to present the very best of myself, so when asked about what I do, my elevator pitch went something like this:
- "I am a communications and book blogger. I review books by women of colour and share communication tips for other female writers. My blog is simply"
- "The main focus of the blog is to celebrate women writers and help them to be the best in their craft.  What I do has already pulled together a small community of like-minded female writers. I want to make that community bigger. I want my blog to be synonymous with women empowerment."
- "What do you do? Are you a blogger or a business owner?"
Now you try.
The aim of your elevator pitch is to lead into a deeper, and more meaningful conversation. Hopefully, you will come away from any networking or social event, having made great connections.
You might find that your first attempt is particularly short and stagnated, but the more you practice, the better it will become. You’ll be able to add more elements and make it more interesting. But remember that at the core of it should be the SEA principle!

Do you have any tips for putting your best foot forward in conversation? Sound off below. And if you'd like to learn more, why not read my blog post on Six Tips for Making Small Talk Without Mentioning the Weather?

You might also be interested in:
Master the Public Speaking Game
How to Apologise Sincerely
Four Things to do to Settle a Dispute 



  1. Oh wow, i think it's so impressive you know the ins and outs of this topic Madeline! I definitely don't have an Elevator Pitch ready and so this is something for me to work on now, for sure! x

    1. Hi Gabrielle. Thank you for reading. I do my best. But most importantly, I am glad you have somethig to take away.


Hey! They say communication is a two-way street. I would really appreciate you leaving a comment!

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