How To Sell Anything in 30 Seconds Flat
Imagine you find yourself in an elevator with Warran Buffet or Mark Zukerberg or even Bill Gates and you realize that, in the next 30 seconds before he gets off this elevator, you have the opportunity to change your career trajectory forever. You have 30 seconds to sell yourself and get a job, or to sell your product/services to one of the wealthiest business men in the entire world. What would you say?
While most of us may not find ourselves in an elevator with such famous people, we may find ourselves at a networking meeting. Having a polished elevator pitch ready can be the difference between your success or failure in a networking meeting, job interview or the fortuitous elevator ride. Research shows that first impressions are made in the first 10 seconds and usually have the greatest impact on decision making. So the smartest way to guarantee that you’ve made the kind of first impression that will land you a customer or job is to have your elevator pitch prepared.
Follow these 7 steps to craft your perfect elevator pitch:
- Know who you are and exactly what your business is about. If you are in the market for a job, your elevator pitch should answer these questions: Who are you? What do you do? Where do you want to go? If you are looking for clients or customers, your elevator pitch should answer these questions: What is your business? Why must I have it now? How can it help others? If you are not clear about this, no one will be either.
- Go through your resume, your LinkedIn Profile, your business’ website and study it thoroughly. After studying your resume and LinkedIn profile, write down four bullet points that explain why you’re great. Discuss your work history, background, skills, accomplishments, and goals. Keep out any irrelevant details that take away from your core message.
- Tell a Story. People love stories and stories make you more memorable. Self-improvement guru Dale Carnegie tells us that our minds are essentially “associate machines,” we remember things better when there’s a story or association attached to the subject. Story telling has become extremely popular with the rise of social media but has been a strategy used by the top sales executives for centuries.
- Don’t use Jargon. Avoid using acronyms or terminology that wouldn’t be understood by someone outside of your industry. A good strategy is to imagine explaining your business to your parents. Use a similar formula in your elevator pitch.
- Invite Conversation. Make sure that your story is compelling enough that the listener is left wanting more. If it isn’t, re-work your pitch until it is.
- Practice. Time yourself and record yourself. Make sure you are able to deliver your pitch naturally in 30 seconds or less. Record yourself and play it back. Its important to know what you look like to others while you’re making your pitch. Are you interesting? Are you believable? Relax, act natural, and get comfortable with your pitch.
- Sell it to your friends and family. Practice your elevator pitch with friends and colleagues. Ask them to give you feedback. Ask them what you should do to make it better. Keep practicing and tweaking your pitch until it’s natural for you to say aloud and convincing to the listener.