Featured Column in Whistler Question – March 8, 2012
This column covered networking in person and via social media the last couple weeks, but no amount of outreach matters if you can’t clearly communicate who you are and what you do.
There are many ways to promote your company but people often miss the opportunity to deliver a well crafted ‘elevator pitch’. An elevator pitch is a brief description of your service or product that anyone should be able to understand in the time it would take to ride in an elevator. Sounds simple but knowing how to create and tailor it can be underestimated. Rather than be used as a sales pitch, it is a free promotional tool meant to initiate a conversation. Your message should share unique aspects of your business so as to excite others, while describing to them what sets you apart from the competition. What information will have your audience wanting to know more?
As well as what you say, it’s important how you say it. The tone you use to deliver your message is paramount to getting the reaction you want. Although enthusiasm is important, you don’t want to add too much sizzle to the steak. Sounding like an infomercial can have a certain insincerity to it.
Your elevator pitch should roll off your tongue so practice it again and again. It should also end with a request, such as asking for their business card, a referral or a meeting. Balance that without sounding like a monologue and you may be surprised at the connections you create by sharing information.
Cathy Goddard is Principal of Lighthouse Visionary Strategies (www.lighthousevisionary.com). Lighthouse offers small business consulting, mentor programs and workshops. Cathy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604.905.8660.