Whether you’re an entrepreneur, business owner, or professional such as an attorney, you’ll want to develop an elevator pitch. An elevator pitch is a 30-60 second overview of a product, service, or person. Sometimes elevator pitches are used in the literal sense — to quickly pitch a business idea to a venture capitalist or angel investor, but they are also used in other ways such as including it in marketing materials, making sales, or as a way to get a job or promotion.
In Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps, Jacob Moore’s pitch is simple: “Mr. Gecko, my name is Jacob Moore. I’m going to marry your daughter.” Concise. Effective.
How To Write An Elevator Pitch
Brevity is key. It must be concise. The average person’s attention span is a mere 30 seconds. Anything after that point and you will begin to lose their attention. You must grab their attention immediately.
I like using the method of asking a question. “What if I told you that if you used our product, you could reduce your IT costs by 30% while seeing seeing a 10% increase to your bottom line because our product has been proven to substantially increase worker productivity.”
Creating a visual is very effective. Telling a story is another great method if it is brief. Once you’ve written your elevator pitch, practice it and make sure it’s 30 seconds.
What You Should Include In Your Elevator Pitch
Features and Benefits
The key to the elevator pitch is describing the features and benefits of your product or service, especially the benefits. Some additional things that you may want to cover is your target market, your competitive advantage, or the strengths of your team.
Describing the features and benefits is great, but it’s missing one key thing: the hook. The hook should be the bottom line, which market validation. The product or service must be something that the market already wants and in fact needs, especially in the scenario of pitching a business to a venture capital firm or angel investor. They’re not interested in courting products and services that are still in development. They want to be involved with a product or service that is ready to take the market by storm. Additionally, they’re looking for products and services that solve problems.
Lastly, you will need to close them. The close is simple. What do you want to get out of the pitch. Are you looking for funding? Do you want somebody to buy your product or service? Do you want somebody to hire you or promote you? Always close with a call to action and never forget to give them your business card.