Building Your Elevator Pitch

Now that you’ve developed your brand value as described in my 22APR09 post, “The Brand of You”, it’s time to build your elevator pitch. An elevator pitch is an opportunity to share your personal (or company) story with someone.  Imagine you find yourself in the following scenario.

You get on an elevator on the lobby floor, headed to the 20th floor on which is located the offices of the company that you’re dying to get into (for a job, a sales pitch, or whatever).  Just as the doors are about to close, the executive you’re about to meet enters, greets you and says: “Hi Andrew. I know we’re meeting in 15 minutes but I’m running late so we all can save ourselves some time if you go right ahead and tell me why I should buy whatever it is you’re selling.”

You can feel the pressure build as the beads of sweat start to form on your forehead when you realize that you have less than a minute to deliver your sales “pitch”!  Your goal is to be ready to provide an insightful and meaningful response, which you can do if you are prepared.

Use the following points to guide your response:

  • 1. Be specific as to what services you offer (use your Personal Brand Value here!)

“I am a consultant with over 25 years of experience managing projects large and small”

  • 2. State your target market where you have experience

“in the financial services, healthcare, high technology, and non profit sectors”

  • 3. Refine your experience as much as possible

 “I’ve held positions on both sides of the lines, as project sponsor, customer, and development manager”

  • 4. Describe your value

“I bring a depth of experience acquired from leading projects in organizations at all levels of project maturity. I can use the insight I’ve gained and solutions I learned to delivery your projects successfully, on-time, within budget, at the quality expected by the customer” 

Now let’s see how this approach can be modified slightly to sell a service

  • 1. Be specific as to what services you offer (use your Company’s Brand Value here!)

“Valenti Partners provides vendor selection and RFP management services”

  • 2. State your target market

“to project executives in Fortune 1000 companies”

  • 3. Refine target to a specific segment

 “who will be utilizing a third-party vendor for development”

  • 4. Describe the need you’re filling

“so that the best vendor is selected and that the contract terms offer maximum value and protection during the project’s lifecycle and beyond”

 So whether your selling yourself or a service, by starting with the brand value and following the simple four steps described above, you can build a surprising and insightful “elevator pitch” without breaking a sweat!

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