Forget the elevator pitchBlog added by Maribeth Kuzmeski on January 3, 2014
Maribeth Kuzmeski

Maribeth Kuzmeski

Grayslake, IL

Joined: September 04, 2002

When people ask you, “What do you do?” they don’t really want you to go on and on talking about yourself.

The key to engaging someone is not through talking, but listening to them. You want to keep the conversation focused on the other person, while still delivering enough to make yourself sound exciting, intriguing and memorable. Even the classic elevator pitch can be too long-winded and gimmicky for an informal introduction.

In a world of ever-decreasing attention spans, less is definitely more. So, how do you find your balance to be both brief and memorable?

When asked about your company, what do you say? The most successful answer is one that is authentic and purposeful. Try forming your own answers by using this simple four-step formula for developing your “simple repeatable statement of value.”

Answer the following questions:
    1. Who are you?
    2. What do you do?
    3. Who do you work with?
    4. What is unique or memorable about what you do or have done?
Example 1: "I work with family-owned businesses, helping them to protect their assets and pay less in taxes. I specifically work with those with serious profit problems: big profits."

Example 2: "I own a marketing consulting firm that employs seven people, all of whom are focused on helping companies find more clients and advocates. I’ve worked with an NBA basketball team, U.S. senators, financial advisors and mutual fund companies. I’ve even closed a sale while upside down in an aerobatic biplane 3,000 feet above ground."

Both of these simple, repeatable statements of value have a quick and clear definition of what they do, the benefits, who they work with and something unique (or surprising). People don’t expect the “big profits” statement, but instead assume immediately that profit problems are bad. Within a second, they realize in a memorable way that profit problems mean something else. This firm works with successful companies only. This statement is a targeted description of who they work with and who they would like to work with and has been remarkable in producing qualified referrals.

By focusing on a short, memorable and clear description of your company and your compelling benefits, you will find that it is easier to open the door to an unending stream of referrals, new clients and sales. A typical mistake: letting our prospects figure us out themselves. Taking the time to focus on your messaging will bring a dramatic return on investment far superior to any other single activity you may do in your business.
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