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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

30 Second Elevator Pitch

What is a 30 Second Elevator Pitch and How to Create and Deliver your Pitch?

30 Second Elevator Pitch is very important tool for Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs. Your Elevator Pitch is a brief and effective story about your business that you need to deliver to a prospect or investor in 30 seconds or less (the time of an elevator ride). You need to explain the most important information to your prospect about your business, your products, services, solutions and explain the way you do business and how you are helping your customers.

Yes, you need to explain everything in 30 seconds. Your elevator pitch is not a traditional sales presentation but it is a story of your business so make your story interesting and exciting so your prospects will be interested to learn more about you and your business when you finish your elevator pitch. The desired outcome of your elevator pitch is to have your prospects ask questions and you can use this opportunity to talk in more details about your business.

Every business is unique in a way – your business should be also unique in order to be successful. Your elevator pitch should communicate the uniqueness of your business and your value proposition. What is the single unique thing that delivers outstanding value for your customers that none of your competitors can deliver?

Use quick facts, analogies and comparisons when explaining your business – you are supposed to deliver your message in 30 seconds or less so use simple examples that support your elevator pitch. Your 30 second elevator pitch should be simple and easy for anyone to get the main idea of how you create value for your customers.

Make your elevator pitch open for questions and further discussions. Examples and facts that trigger interest and provoke people to ask questions and get interested in your business is what you really need. When pitching a potential customer use examples of similar customers that you already have so your target prospect can easily relate your business to her needs, issues and preferences.

After you develop your 30 second elevator pitch go back and forth and improve it – think of the questions that can be raised by your prospects and come up with the best answers that will help them understand your business. Don’t make your elevator pitch sound like an organized sales presentation but try to deliver your elevator pitch spontaneously and in a simple conversational way.
Pay attention to questions, responses and body language of your prospects when you deliver your sales pitch and adjust your tone and approach if necessary.

Use actionable statements and verbs such as saves, improves, delivers, reduces, cuts, helps, simplifies… and use real experiences, examples and real-life facts in your examples like 20% savings, 3 months program, develop project in less than a week…

When you think you are done with your elevator pitch go over your pitch again and review every word and statement you made. If you find words and statements that don’t add value to your pitch delete them – you don’t need them. You need fast and efficient story not a typical long presentation. If you think your elevator pitch is too long and it will take you more than 30 seconds to tell your story try to reorganize and simplify your story. For each important point in your elevator pitch you need to ask yourself “Is there a better and faster way to explain this point?”.

If you have more info about a specific prospect you can customize your elevator pitch based on his or her needs and experience. For example in business to business sales your elevator pitch should be more focused and customized to your prospect based on the information you already have such as your prospect’s needs, current supplier, issues and problems, core business… Make your sales pitch open so you can easily customize it based on your audience – for example what can be a great example for one prospect can be a very bad approach for another if your point is unrelated to your prospect’s needs.

The process of developing and creating your 30 second elevator pitch is also a great exercise for you – it helps you get focused and it helps you identify the most important issues for your customers and prospects. As you start using your new 30 second elevator pitch pay attention to how it works, what are the typical responses and results you get and continuously improve it.

Tips & Tricks: How to Pitch a Startup Idea in 30 to 60 Seconds at Startup Weekend (Abu Dhabi May 24-26, 2012)

- Focus on your core idea – don’t talk about features.- Speak clearly and not too fast.- Pick a name for your startup idea.- Don’t use slides or props. You’ll only have a microphone.- Introduce yourself and share your background. (5-10 Seconds)- Describe the problem the idea solves. (10-20 Seconds)- Explain the idea and how it solves the problem. (10-20 seconds)- Say who you need on your team (e.g., developer, marketing, designer, etc.) (5-10 seconds)- Remember to smile and make your enthusiasm contagious!



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