“The worst time to think of the best thing to say is when you’re saying it!”
When you introduce yourself to strangers (and friends) at networking events, can you tell someone everything they need to know to refer you, in just 60 seconds? This is your elevator pitch – your compelling answer to the question ’What do you do?’
You don’t often get a minute, but many groups and clubs like that 60 second slot where you share your story and your proposition with everyone in the room.
One minute seems a long time but it goes very quickly. So you have to be prepared and rehearsed. If you’re in a networking group that meets weekly, your introduction also puts you under pressure to vary your message from so that your audience isn’t hearing exactly the same thing each time.
I do a lot of networking coaching with business people to help them achieve success by becoming the obvious number one ‘go to choice for what they do. A big part of this is building your reputation and developing your good name through carefully crafted messages. One of these is your elevator speech or pitch.
To help with your 60 second introduction or networking elevator pitch, use the following headings and think about the answers you would give:
- Name and business name
- A very clear summary of the services or products you supply
- A statement of what others would gain by considering you – this is the benefits section. How would buying your service or product actually help someone else?
- Your unique selling proposition (USP) – what exactly do you do better or differently than your competitors?
- What type of customers or clients are you looking for?
- What type of products and services are you looking for?
- Why do you network? What exactly do you want to get from this event?
- Name and business name, quick summary of services or products (always end with something simple people might recall more easily).
You won’t be able to get all of this in, but it’s a great menu of items to cover when you get your moment in the spotlight. You can’t leave it to chance. Yes, some of it might be scripted, but that’s what we call preparation. Your job is to make it NOT sound like a script!
Great networkers are made as well as born. With a little education, coaching and application, you can be one of the best!