How to Refresh Your Small Business Elevator Pitch for 2013

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Karin BellantoniWhen you are in business, you are selling yourself as much as you are selling your products and services.  One of things that you might want to update as you head into the New Year is how you introduce yourself. Some call it your 30 second commercial; some call it a value proposition or your personal positioning statement, but most say elevator pitch. Meaning — what you would say if you were asked who you are and what you do. It’s important that it be brief and can be delivered in the short time you have in an elevator with someone.

It doesn’t matter what you call it, just what you say…  Here are some tips on how to refresh your elevator pitch in 2013.

As a coach, facilitator and sales consultant for many companies over the years… This is where we always start.

But first, before you get started crafting your pitch, keep in mind that people don’t care who you are and what you do until they understand what you can do for them.

We all know this, yet we continue to introduce ourselves with the same old tired, worn out, back dated, ancient value proposition that you were using 5 to 10 years ago when you started your company! Maybe you just followed what your older peer from your former job did. A short stint in multi-level marketing business many years ago taught me that your pitch is 90% of the sale, so make it good no matter who you are talking to.

You may be introduced to someone who is one degree away from your ideal buyer! A solid elevator pitch can motivate that person to make that critical warm introduction.

Old Formula:

This is who I am.

This is what I do.

Here is more about my company than you will ever want to know….zzzzzzzzzzzzzz!

Are you still awake?

I want to tell you what I can do for you.

Too late…. (hear the buzzer ring)

In the age of me, me, me you have an opportunity to be different.

In the fast-paced, ever changing, dynamic world in which we live, everyone is busy. And you’d best believe the clients you want are busy (too busy too hear all that rhetoric.) They just want to know what is in it for them.

So lets think about the formula in a little different way.

Start with the RESULTS you create for people… then the people will know what you can do for them and others. When you start with a powerful results statement people will automatically ask you how you do that or why.

I tell people that we help companies grow sales revenue in under 90 days. Typically the next question is; how do you do that?

Now I am invited into a conversation. That’s how to begin to build a relationship.

Ask yourself:

Who benefits from what you do?

How is it unique or how can it be positioned as unique?

What do we really offer our clients and why do they choose us?

What would make you choose your own company as a client?

If you need some great examples of your work, ask your happy customers for testimonials and explain that you want to revise your elevator speech or introductory statement to be more about the people you serve.

You will be amazed at what you hear!

New Formula

The results you create.

How or why you are different comes before saying anything about your company.

Deal?

So go ahead and redesign your 2013 elevator pitch! If you want to, leave it in the comments section of this blog post.

I’ll give you feedback. Really.

Karin BellantoniAbout the author: Karin Bellantoni is President of Blueprint-Sales Management Science, where she finds untapped revenue potential in your business-to-business sales process. Working with B2B sales teams at all stages, Karin facilitates growth by applying structure and processes to build scalability. Her methods deliver immediate impact on results in under 90 days.

Day 29: 31 Ways to Boost Your Small Business in 2013This article is from the SmallBizLady special blog series: 31 Ways to Boost Your Small Business in 2013. #Boost2013

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Comments

  1. says

    How to Refresh Your Small Business Elevator Pitch for 2013

    Thanks for your enlightenment. Actually a lot of business men and women do not know what to say when asked to do so in one sentence. You notice those people because when you ask them what they do, they give you their business card instead of talking.

  2. says

    Great article about how to avoid the boring, dull elevator pitch! Thanks for sharing these ideas on how to make your message fresh and engaging. Nice work! If you’re interested in additional resources, you may want to check out “The NEW Elevator Pitch” http://bit.ly/thenewelevatorpitch

  3. says

    Here’s what I’ve been working on: “I show families how to create a stream of income and find healthier products. It’s exciting to see people succeed and reach their dreams. How? I own an online health and wellness business and we have a straightforward method for buying healthier personal care problems online and teaching others how to do the same.” This feels a little vague to me but maybe it’s good to invite more questions…? Thanks!!

    • says

      Patricia-
      Thanks for asking for help. If Im going to take time to do this online I need to ask you to forgive me in advance for being blunt, ok?

      Woman, did you count your I’s?!!

      Your statement is focussed on YOU not them.
      Check out your first sentence-
      Making sure small businesses like yours are sustainable is my focus.

      To be blunt ….what you focus is..well it’s not what they want to hear.
      They want to hear, what TANGIBLE result you can create for them.

      Small business and sustainable future? What does that mean? Do you help them make local and green purchases, help them plan, create a vision ….and if so what does that exactly do for them.
      Really think about the last few people who raved about your results.
      What EXACTLY did they say you did?

      Last year when I applied this exercise personally and called a few happy Clients, I had one say: Well, I don’t know exactly why but it seemed like at first (you have to let them talk and TELL you) and he hemmed and hawed and then he said:
      Seems like the salespeople stopped coming in on Fridays. I said:
      What?!
      He said yeah like they didn’t need the whole day for paperwork anymore so we really got an extra day of selling in every week since we implemented your system!

      Elevator pitch
      We help Companies increase sales productivity by 20% in under 90 days-

      Makes more sense to my prospects than;
      I help sales teams become more efficient and effective by garnering data from the team and applying new business decisions. How can you succeed in todays competitive market with out data and analytics…..
      Patricia….are you still there?? :)
      See how I am losing you…..
      Also, you just need the statement then they say …wow how do you do that and you can speak then more clinically about situations sound like an expert instead of a sales person. Makes sense?
      BTW- The whole second part of it sounds condescending and I am sure that is not your intention. It happens when you dont know how to position yourself…actually one of the most common mistakes!

      Good Luck Patricia!
      Karin

  4. says

    This is my pitch: “Hi! I’m Patricia. Making sure small businesses like yours are sustainable is my focus. Through research, I have found that most minority-owned businesses, particularly black-owned businesses in our area, don’t have a business plan. I realize that you know how to do the work, but have you devised a plan for success? What will it take for your business to succeed in today’s competitive society? What is your “niche”? By helping you to answer these questions, I believe I can help to lead your business to a sustainable future. If you have the time, I would like to tell you about my agency and what we have to offer your business.”

    Please give feedback. Thanks!

  5. Mind your pitch says

    Very well said. Elevator pitch is most required and most neglected thing. As we realized the power of messaging, we created a place to help create and practice pitching. Let me know your feedback on http://mindyourpitch.com

  6. says

    Great article, I just had my team over yesterday working on this very thing. Your timing is great.

    Mine: I help people reach their financial goals without spending more money than they do now.

  7. says

    Hi Karin,
    Thank you for the new formula and the opportunity for feedback. Updated pitch as of this morning: “I developed a one-page worksheet that helps people feel better every day on their own. In about 20 minutes, you can evaluate the change you experience on a 1-10 scale of peace and joy.”
    With much appreciation, Lorie

  8. K says

    I am a financial representative helping individuals create financial security through the accumulation of wealth and managing the risks of dying too soon or becoming sick or injured. I do this through a process that identfies your goals and objectives and steps you’ve already taken towards reaching them, then provide recommendations based on that information.

  9. LLS says

    Hi Karin! Thank you for the great information…here is my pitch:

    I help people with decreasing their pain or stress.

  10. says

    Thanks for the article. It is easy to put revising your elevator pitch off, and then you get stuck in the elevator with someone influential and you have to revert back to the old pitch. Going to work on the short, medium, and longer elevator pitches today!

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