When you’re first starting out in business, you need to do a whole lot of networking and it can be pretty daunting when you’re attending some really big events with some really big people. So it’s no wonder you instinctively avoid your elevator pitch, but, once you understand why you avoid your elevator pitch you’ll be able to devise a plan to refine and perfect in no time.

Why you avoid your elevator pitch:

  1. If you have an elevator pitch, you actually have to use it – and this makes you feel fluttery in your tummy!
  2. You need to just calm your farm. Most times when you go to use it, you’re in an easy space to just let it roll off the tongue. We worry too much in advance. Try some power stances. Do some positive self-talk. Focus on something else.
  3. You’re afraid the nerves will get the better of you, so you avoid any place where you would have to use it.. which is, at the end of the day, bad for your business! Don’t hide away, learn to be a master instead so you can grow your business and reach your goals.
  4. You think it sounds rehearsed – and it probably does, until you know it off by heart. So rehearse it. Say that puppy over and over until it rolls off your tongue.
  5. It doesn’t feel like it fits you – make it your own! Don’t bother to memorise it if it doesn’t feel like it’s you. You need to be saying exactly how you feel/think otherwise your body will give away signs that you don’t believe the stuff that’s rolling out of your own mouth. It needs to come from your heart. It needs to MAKE SENSE TO YOU.
  6. If it doesn’t make sense to you, if it doesn’t align with you? You won’t do it – it’s pretty simple. You have GOT TO come up with something that works for the way YOU like to do business, not how Barbara down the road does business.
  7. You don’t know who you are – so writing the elevator pitch will be DIFFICULT. Do the brand strategy, get to the heart of what you do, how you do it and why you do it and let that shine though. Writing will be MUCH easier once you’ve articulated this!
  8. You don’t know what you need to say – Albert Einstein said that if you can’t explain it simply you don’t understand it well enough, and I tend to agree with him (lucky him haha!). You need to know EXACTLY what you want to say, similar to the above – it all starts at the heart of your brand.
  9. You make it all about you – when we make it all about us, we shrink within ourselves – “what if she doesn’t like me?”, “what if she laughs at me?”, “what if she “. What if it’s NOT all about you? What if your elevator pitch is more about making THEM feel something? Think about that 😉
  10. You don’t do do boring. You don’t do standard. If you have EVER had a marketing company write a pitch for you, you’ll know what it’s like. They run you through a stock-standard process and you pop out the other end of the production line with a paragraph that’s meant to work for you. Be as authentic as physically possible! It needs to come from a place that ALIGNS with you.

What to do about it?

  1. Get clear on who the hell you are – do the hard yards, the strategic branding stuff. Get to the heart of your brand and then show that heart. Your passion needs spill out of you!
  2. Get clear on how the hell you help people – when your elevator pitch is all about THEM (not you), you’ll focus on what’s in it for them too.
  3. Keep it front and centre, get it to sink into your brain – practise makes perfect!
  4. You can use a shortened version on social media so that you’re seeing it all the time! Pin it to your vision board. Add it onto a Post It and stick it to your computer screen.
  5. Remember to calm your farm and go for it.

What strategies have you found help with refining your elevator pitch? Any tips you can share?


This article was originally published on May 20, 2016

Image: @talisasutton