Why an elevator pitch is important, and how to create one

Imagine you’re an interior designer. It’s 8am, and you’re on your way to an appointment. You enter the building and hop into the elevator. There are two people next to you, and you overhear them talking about their new house and the difficulties they’re having in  finding a good designer to decorate. You have 30 seconds before your floor. What would you say? What would you do? In half a minute, you have the opportunity to persuade this couple to hire you. Of course, you would be confident and more likely to win them over if you had something prepared.

An elevator pitch is a brief, persuasive, well-crafted (and hopefully memorised) speech that tells the listener who you are, what you have to offer and why they should consider doing business with you.

A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride, hence the name. It should be concise, engaging and memorable. It also needs to explain what makes you – or your organisation, product, or idea – unique. And, when successful, it ends with an exchange of contact details.

Why are elevator pitches important?

You never know what influential person you will run into, and having a ready-made elevator pitch to deliver could make the difference between winning and losing an important opportunity. But just having an elevator speech is not sufficient; it is also essential that it is effective from its written form to delivery.

So, here are some tips for creating an elevator pitch:

  1. Identify your goal  

What is the objective of your pitch? Remember to frame your speech around what you want to tell potential clients. Are you informing them about your company? Do you have a new product on offer? Whatever it is, let this be the focus throughout.

  1. Describe  

Begin your pitch by describing what you, your organisation, product or idea does. Focus on the problems that you solve and how you help people. Include any statistics and clear information that reveals tangible results, if possible.

  1. Communicate your USP

Your elevator pitch must highlight your Unique Selling Proposition (USP). It’s essential to explain what makes you, your company, or idea unique. People want to hear about what sets you apart from every other business that does what you do.

  1. Be succinct 

It’s essential your elevator pitch is succinct. Don’t complicate your speech with unnecessary information. Make sure it is simple and can be easily understood by anyone from your grandparents to your friends younger brother. A great tip is to avoid complex words; this will also make it easier to deliver.

  1. Be conversational 

Make sure your elevator speech is conversational in tone. This will make it feel more genuine and human. It also makes it easier for your listeners to relate to you as an actual person. Reading your pitch aloud and practising delivery will help you tweak your speech to make it seem more natural.

  1. Give a call to action  

Once you have finished your elevator pitch, give your potential client something to do next in a call to action. If the person you spoke to wants to continue the conversation, handing over a business card is a professional way to let them know what they can do to follow-up.

An example of an elevator speech is the one 514 Media has written about its own activities. We begin with our USP, then describe what the company does and then reveal the value we add.

“Many technology companies have neither the time nor resources to manage international communications campaigns. We create technical content, and we translate it, ensuring our clients’ messages reach the right audiences worldwide – raising awareness, stimulating growth and generating higher sales.”

The team at 514 Media are experts in creating well-crafted elevator pitches, as well as other written content. Get in contact with us at [email protected].