Getting Off the Elevator (Pitch)
July 27, 2011 6 Comments
I’ve been thinking a lot about the elevator pitch/speech lately. And I have two major issues with it.
- It’s a pitch. You’re selling.
- It’s too long.
I get the principle, but I’d like to challenge you to have a clear message that is 10 words or less – the totally distilled, core message of who you are and what value you offer.
The kind of statement you can make before the elevator door even closes.
Can you fill in this blank? I/we want to be the go-to person/company for ________________. That’s one of the questions that gets you started toward the 10-word summary.
Why is this important?
- YOU need to be totally clear on your core identity and message. In a way that could fit easily into one tweet.
- You may not have 2-3 minutes to get to the point.
- Not every situation is a sales situation. Can you explain what you do to a neighbor in 15 seconds?
- Your message needs to be packaged so others can transmit it for you. I often (spontaneously) ask clients who know me to introduce me in a group setting, to see if I’ve enabled them to truly grasp my identity.
Here’s how Ravenswood Winery does it: No Wimpy Wines. Three words of branding perfection!
By all means, have an extended version of your message for when you know you’ll have some time. But, in my opinion, one of our biggest marketing challenges isn’t designing an elevator pitch – it’s gaining clarity first about our market purpose, direction, and message.
I’m regularly astounded at how rarely this is in place – distilled message clarity woven throughout the company and its marketing. And that is why I offer Clarity Therapy sessions for (mostly) small companies who want to program their marketing GPS for clear direction (brazen commercial for my consulting services – because I’m quite good at this!).
What are my summary statements? I have two, depending on if the need is for consulting, or for business referral connections:
- I help clients gain clarity in their direction and message (analogy: clarity therapist)
- I pro-actively make beneficial business referrals via my trust network (analogy: eHarmony)
And, yes, part of the Clarity Therapy outcome is finding that key business analogy that will help clients picture your service in their minds, so they can remember it and explain it to others. This (along with a compelling story and a differentiating offering) is a crucial element to an effective go-to-market message!
If you’re feeling like you need to stand out more clearly in a very noisy marketplace, contact me about a Clarity Therapy session. Don’t waste time and money being just another face in the marketplace.