Have a fabulous idea and passion to match? It will get you far, but somewhere along the way you will need to tell that story, share that idea or pitch that concept. If the idea of approaching a stranger to share your vision, or getting up in front of a room to talk about your ideas leaves you more bewildered than excited, rest assured knowing many feel exactly the same way. This in mind we asked Jane from #GridAKL residents Anthem to share her top five tips for elevator pitch success…
Where Jane reflects on how to expand your world and refrain from being annoying in lifts
1. Be human – imagine you are travelling in the lift with a mate. You don’t want to bore them witless with technical details and a sales pitch. Tone it down, be conversational, don’t use acronyms, and make sure you are chilled and relaxed, not hyped up and in “have I got a deal for you” mode. Getting relaxed with elevator pitches takes practice. Rehearse with colleagues, get the eye contact going, avoid invading your target’s personal space.
2. Know what your ask is – Be totally clear on why you are approaching this person, encroaching on their moment of quiet reflection between meetings, and demanding their time. Be clear, short and to the point. Avoid vague generalities and long winded explanations. This is not a sales pitch – don’t sell! It’s the start of a conversation.
3. Make it relevant to them – why do you need them to know what you do? What do you want from them? Why do they need you in their life? Where’s the hook or the reciprocity or the benefit of having a conversation with you?
4. Don’t be a bore – make it conversational. If they’re not showing signs of interest, back off. Your end game is to spike their interest and for them to invite you to fill them in on a little more about you. FYI this is likely to be at a later date. Imagine you really did meet them in a lift – respect their time and anticipate they have other plans which don’t involve listening to you all day. As per 2, if you want more of their time then that’s your ask – book in a coffee to chat further and explore opportunities.
5. Keep it short – we don’t have too many 52 storey buildings in New Zealand. Imagine you’ve got 6 floors and 10-15 seconds, no longer!
Go forth and tantalise.
About Jane: I love networking, see it as meeting friends I just don’t know yet, and have a focus on reciprocity (see my blogs on www.anthem.co.nz on go-giving called “The true way to get ahead” and “the real reason many people dislike networking…”. ) I run courses on authentic results driven networking for clients and enjoy the benefits of having a large network. Elevator pitches are often the start of enduring relationships of mutual value.