The Elevator Pitch

The "Elevator Pitch" may well be something you've heard of before but how much importance you have given this topic to date. For those who are less familiar, the Elevator Pitch is really a sales pitch that you would give to someone in those few seconds while you travel together in the elevator, or any other brief encounter for that matter.

First of all in terms of timing I think any initial pitch should last anything from 60 to 90 seconds and no more. Some sales people will think that they can not possibly describe what they have to offer in such a short space of time, and this will be absolutely true. However the Elevator Pitch is really only the attention grabber that will hopefully lead to further contact with the prospect. So where do we start and where do we finish? What do we leave in and what do we leave out? Well before you set pen to paper to create that masterpiece pitch, think of this sequential order:

1. Who are you and who do you represent?
2. What do you do and what's great about what you sell?
3. How can it benefit the person in front of you?
4. Ask a leading question in relation to your offering.
5. Request a follow on contact with the prospect.

Now I know this may seem simple but if any one of these components is missing or poorly communicated, it will have a negative knock on effect on the others. The timing, quality and delivery of what you say are all pretty much of equal importance. The best pitch in the world will not work if it's not presented with confidence and conviction, so just to go quickly through the pointers in a little more detail.

1. Who are you and who do you represent? You simply state your name and the company you work for. It would be ideal if the type of product or service can be summarized in the name in some form or other. For example, "Hi I'm John, I work for AquaFlo Water Purifying Services!"

2. What do you do and what's great about what you sell? This is actually the tricky bit because you have to capture the prospect's attention with very few strong words. One example could be: "I make people healthier and happier by providing them with clear purified water!"

3. How can it benefit the person in front of you? Well this is where you actually do the selling because you're aiming at the person's self-interest and emotion. One example could be: "No more heavy bottles to carry, no toxins and an abundance of cheaper quality water!"

4. The leading question is really just putting the words in the prospect's mouth. "Did you know that plastic water bottles are polluting the environment. You see most people will agree with this question while you are softly guiding them to your side of the argument.

5. Requesting a follow up often known as the "call to action!" is essential or all your other efforts will have been wasted. This can vary according to the individual's methods as long as it can lead to further contact.

So take a pen and paper and start planning that perfect "Elevator Pitch" and watch those sales beginning to roll in. The secret to being creative in this area is to keep writing draft copies until you are completely satisfied. You can then do a trial run and make further perfections. The reason I say this is because what sounds great in writing does not always work so well in the spoken language. The one thing I am sure of is that with the right amount of perseverance, the best results will come.