We’ve all been at a party where someone has asked, “what do you do?” It could even be an event with extended family. More often than not we either fumble over some explanation of the tasks we complete at our day job or we start posturing by rattling off, “I’m the VP Marketing of Acme Corp.”
In most cases, unless you are talking to people of the same industry, those titles and job descriptions are useless. Having an elevator pitch is critical whether you are a sales person or an IT person. Here are a couple strategies for crafting an easy pitch:
Three Different Types of Elevator Pitches
There are countless different strategies for elevator pitches. In this post, I’ve included the top three elevator presentation formulas. By no means are these all inclusive, but hopefully they give you a good start.
#1 The Question Pitch
In this version, you want to turn the conversation around and get the person to think of a personal experience that your job most connects with. So instead of me saying I am a public speaker that talks about experiential marketing, I could ask the question, “Have you ever been to a restaurant and had an outstanding experience that you just had to tell everyone about?” The answer is normally yes and then I would proceed to say, “Well, I speak to businesses around the nation on how they can create those first class experiences every day for their teams and customers.” Lightbulb! The person I am talking to knows exactly what I do.
#2 The Comparison Pitch
The best way to help someone understand what it is that you do is to compare it to common items that they know that are totally unrelated to what you do. For example, for my start-up, boon, when someone asks what I do, I say, “Imagine Healthcare Staffing meets eHarmony and Uber.” Usually there is a contemplative look as someone tries to figure that out, so I go onto say, “We help healthcare providers to find jobs based on personality and skills with the click of a button, as easy as requesting an Uber.” Lightbulb. Everyone understand.
The Inspirational Pitch
Instead of rattling off your job description, you can give them the company vision or mission, “I get to lead a team that is using technology to revolutionize the healthcare industry by providing by higher quality patient care and ensuring fair wages.” Giving someone the company vision allows them to see you’re part of something bigger. If you are an accountant, you could use the same type of phrasing but change the intro, “I have the opportunity to make sure everyone is paid on time and there is enough money in the bank account so our developers can continue to create a technology platform that is revolutionizing the healthcare industry by providing higher quality patient care and ensuring fair wages.
The Importance of the Perfect Elevator Pitch
Of course, these are just a few scenarios. There are endless types of elevator pitches that may work. In fact, if you’re in an elevator, your adrenaline may kick in and you may hit a home run. However, being prepared is crucial. Hope that helps!