Michele Attias Life Coach

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The Elevator Pitch: How To Stand Out ( For All The Right Reasons)

Have you ever had the feeling that all eyes are on you and in 60 seconds flat you're required to convince someone of your capabilities, your business acumen and how you stand out from the crowd?

As someone at an event stated "I can present at board meetings with directors without a problem, but doing a 60 second pitch gives me huge anxiety". 

Certainly a potential client for my Business Coaching practice.   

The elevator pitch, so named because it should last no longer than the average elevator ride, can reduce even the most confident of people into blubbering wrecks and more so when there are 5 other people showcasing the same business.

So how is it possible to stand out (for the right reasons).

More importantly, why would anyone hire you as opposed to anyone else?   

To illustrate the example of standing out in an original way, I wanted to give an example which Nick, a Copywriter from That Writing Chap gave about doing exactly this.

He came up with a genius way to become noticed whilst attending The Business Show which was attended by 1,000 people. Most of which were business owners wearing identical black and grey suits, black shoes and black framed glasses.  

So how did he, as a Copywriter manage to stand out? 

I will answer this simply.

He decided to wear a pink onesie with a message pinned to the front of it which read 'Are you setting the right tone for your target audience?'

This was of course meant to be ironic bearing in mind the environment he was in. Throughout this event he was approached by people continuously who either looked at him suspiciously.  Others laughed and then used it as a reason to start talking to him, whilst a large proportion of them swapped business cards whilst being told 'we must speak further' and 'I like your approach'.

Most importantly, he gained business on that day for being original, different and actually stepping out of the mould of how a copywriter should act, dress and behave. 

In essence it is about being unique, individual and showing your personality through your 60 second pitch.

Although it's often easier to blend into the crowd and do as people expect, you are then in danger of being one thing.

Forgettable.

When working with my clients, one of the main things I focus on when working on confidence and building up to the elevator pitch, is to encourage clients to be the best version of themselves. To start in a small network group, attend regularly and push their comfort zone at each event.

The first elevator pitch might not be perfect, but what you're trying to achieve is authenticity as well as originality.  

Here are the Top 8 Ways to Raise Your Stakes When Giving Your Elevator Pitch:

Find your USP - Your Unique Selling Point

What makes you different?  What do you specialise in, What is your passion and how can you showcase this

Be Different  to what is expected 

If you are an accountant, lawyer, chiropractor etc, people expect conservative, therefore stand out by doing the unexpected.

Be clear about the service you provide  

It's really important to be clear about what you do and how you do it.  A few weeks ago whilst I was at an event, someone stood up, walked to the centre of the room and gave an incredibly enthusiastic speech making everyone sit bolt upright, however once he finished his pitch, the guy next to me asked "What does he do?" Regrettably, I couldn’t answer.

Address a problem and offer a solution - You

Address a problem the audience are facing at this present time and showcase how you would use your expertise to deliver a solution.

Ask a question to get people reflecting 

Questions are always a good hook to engage an audience and get them involved in what you are talking about.

Be enthusiastic 

If you're not enthusiastic about your business, why should anyone else be?

Bring your merchandise or product to the event to showcase

This is a good way to showcase your product, get noticed and to use it in your pitch.

Topic of the week

If there's a topic of the week, such as Father's Day, National Cancer Week, National Stress Week, Valentines Day, use this in your speech as it will make it topical to what people need there and then.

These are the pitches I've found the most memorable:

Katie Patuk Director of KP Events  

Katie produced a packet of painkillers and placing it on the table claiming "I take the headache out of planning your event". Not only was this short and simple, it made everyone laugh, connected her with the audience and frankly, Neurofen tablets will have a very different message for me. This is because headache tablets will now be connected to KP Events.

Tony Jackson Accountant from  Turnpike Business Services 

Tony in his pitch claims to 'transform your carrier bags into tax returns' and at this point takes out a number of carrier bags (to illustrate that these would normally be filled with clients paperwork). This also produces a laughter from everyone and ensures that from hereon all Tesco and Sainsburys bags I come across will be connected to tax returns and accounts.

Liz Robbins Managing Partner at AS Robins  

Liz announces her phrase enthusiastically as "Passionate about payroll". I never quite imagined the words passionate and payroll being used in the same sentence, but here you go. I will never think of payroll as anything but with passion in the future.

The above illustrates how we can transform a job into something memorable, original, funny and most importantly change peoples perceptions of your business.  

The elevator pitch is far too important to be taken casually as it's one of the most effective methods available to reach new buyers and clients with a winning message. Although, you will not  be pitching in an elevator, but in a planned networking event, you should still be prepared to capture your audience's attention quickly.

It's important to keep it fresh as every business will grow and change and therefore your pitch needs to change to reflect this.

You can have the most creative logo, the slickest slogan, the most dazzling brochures, and the most cutting-edge web site, but if your elevator pitch is bland, you're missing one of your most important opportunities.

Categories
Business Marketing
Coaching
Self Development
Tags
Business
Elevator Pitch
Networking
Sales