Drop The Elevator Pitch
For months I have been trying to craft, pitch, and fine tune my elevator pitch to perfection. Since most of my marketing revolves around in-person networking, having a solid elevator pitch was always front in my mind. It seems that no matter how much I practice, I always end up fumbling my lines. Speaking is not my forte. In fact, I am a soft-spoken with a slight lisp all mixed up with a tendency to speak too fast and bring out my southern accent.
When it comes to speaking, yes I know I can be a hot mess; however, speaking is one of the marketing tools I do best in. So after researching elevator pitch routines, I decided to take my own route and drop the pitch completely. People want to have a real conversation, not be sold to like an infomercial.
I came up with a five step conversation starter (because that is what we are doing…starting conversations, not pitching). Conversations build relationships, strengthen your authority and credibility, and will ultimately lead to sales. Never underestimate the power of a good conversation.
Here is an example of my conversation starter: “I own a Full-Service Branding Agency called Snap Happy Pics. I help small businesses strengthen their brands so they can attract more customers. So for example, I am working with a baker. I can provide a branded photography shoot for her place of business and bakery goods as well as create marketing cards. This is ready-to-use content for her website and marketing campaigns so she can attract more customers into her bakery.”
Below is an example of my Conversation Starter Worksheet and the breakdown of each step of the process.
The entire conversation starter should take 30 seconds or less to recite (in your normal speed and tone). Each step should be one sentence. Remember, you do not need to include every product and service you offer, only provide the highlights with a concrete example. If your audience is interested to learn more, they will ask you follow-up questions and turn your conversation starter into a valuable conversation that will end you with a potential client, referral partner, or collaborator.
Have fun and be prepared to craft, test and tweak to your heart’s content. Last bit of advice today…Remember our business is ever-changing so it will be natural of your conversation starter to change as well.