You have 30 seconds to tell us: how does your company change the world? Let’s talk about the dreaded “What do you do?” question. It’s just four words, right? If you’re not ready for them, those four words lead to a lot of stumbling, a lot of “you knows,” and a walk-away facepalm. You know what you do, of course. But trying to explain it in the brief moment it takes to find a seat at a networking event or standing alongside curious parents at a playground is hard. Without practice, it’s easy to flub it. We have all been there. You only have 20-30 seconds to explain what sets you apart from every other company competing in your industry. So, you want to make them count. You want to be concise and inspirational. Because those 20-30 seconds can be your only opportunity to transform a listener or reader into a believer. Don’t leave anyone wondering what you do. A run-in at the coffee shop, 140 characters on Twitter, or a two to three sentence bio blurb on Facebook — these are marketing opportunities. So let’s put on our branding hats and fix them for good.
How to Form Your Elevator Pitch
The most effective elevator pitches have three components:
- Lead with Purpose. The first words out must convey the name of your company, what it produces and the problem it solves. Minimize any unnecessary details. Anyone who wants to know the start date of your company, the city your office is in or who the owners are can ask more questions or find that on your website. Identify the purpose and impact your company makes.
- Follow with Clarity. Give a quick example of the problem that exists and how your company solves it. Try to think of a universal example that anyone can understand — think CEO to Grandma. How does your company stand out from other companies that may sound like yours?
- Conclude with Opportunity. A quick conclusion must convey how the listener can benefit from your company and product. Though you may not always be explaining who you are to your target market, everyone who is willing to listen to your speech may know someone who is. Finish with how the listener can benefit, what she would gain if she tried it, or how just knowing about your product gets her one step closer to success in her own life.
Your succinct elevator pitch starts by pulling together something much bigger. Set aside time to:
- Identify your company’s strengths, successes and the problem it solves.
- Sort through all your client’s stories and determine which one(s) best explains how your product solves a pain point.
- Determine how your company can benefit others — directly or indirectly — and how you can convey that message.
Clear Communication > Knowing
You know why your company is important, right? Of course you do. Otherwise, you’d be doing something else. More important than your knowing how your company is going to save the world is your ability to tell others. That’s what your competitors are doing. And that’s what you should be doing, too. Put aside some time today to form your 20-30 second elevator pitch (or shoot for 140 characters on Twitter). Branding your company begins with communicating how you are different from the rest. If you need help, we’re here. Give us a call.