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Career Development

How to Create the Perfect Elevator Pitch

February 25, 2020

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Perfecting your elevator pitch can help in all areas of your career, whether you're trying to secure your dream job, convince investors to invest in your company or sell your products and services. The perfect elevator pitch can allow you to create a new connection and leave a lasting impression in the mind of the person to whom you're speaking. Understanding what should be included in your elevator pitch can make it easier to craft one that will have the greatest impact. In this article, we discuss what a perfect elevator pitch is, the key components you need to include and the steps you need to take to create one. We also include a few bonus tips to make creating one easier.

Related: How to Give an Elevator Pitch (With Examples)

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What is a perfect elevator pitch?

A perfect elevator pitch is one that allows you, in 20 to 30 seconds, to tell the person you're talking to about yourself, your product or your idea in a way that is interesting, memorable and succinct. An elevator pitch can be used by job seekers to give hiring managers or recruiters a quick overview of who they are and what they're looking for. It can also be used by sales professionals or entrepreneurs to sell their products and services.

Related: How to Succeed at Business Networking

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What to include in a perfect elevator pitch

Here are the key components you should include in your elevator pitch:

  • Problem: One of the most important parts to include in your elevator pitch is the problem that you are solving.
  • Solution: Once you have defined the problem, you can explain your solution.
  • Unique selling proposition (USP): Highlight what makes your product, service, company or even you different.
  • Hook: This is a statement at the end designed to get the attention of your audience, such as a sentence that can translate into profits for their business.

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How to create the perfect elevator pitch

Use these steps to craft the perfect elevator pitch.

  1. Who you are
  2. What you do
  3. Who you serve
  4. What makes you different
  5. Attention-grabbing hook
  6. Put it together

1. Who you are

Start your elevator pitch with one sentence about who you are. For example, you could introduce yourself as a sales representative for a specific company or a consultant for small- to medium-sized business owners.

2. What you do

Write one or two sentences about what you do and, specifically, the problem you solve. You may want to refer to your mission statement and what your ultimate goal is or review your product or services. Focus on the benefits that you provide and how you impact the lives of others.

3. Who you serve

Write one or two sentences about who your ideal clients are. You may want to write down how your products or services help this group of people.

4. What makes you different

Write down your unique selling proposition (USP) and what sets you apart from your competitors. If you're a job seeker, you could write about the experiences or skills that make you unique as a candidate.

5. Attention-grabbing hook

Add a hook at the end, a statement that is specifically designed to get the attention of your audience, such as how your product or service can impact their life right away. You could also use a question that will grab their attention instead of a statement, such as one that addresses the problem that they may be experiencing.

6. Put it together

Once you have identified each of these pieces separately, combine the statements, starting with the fifth step. Add transitions and edit the pitch so that it flows conversationally and focuses on the most important information. You may want to create different variations based on who you're talking to as well as different lengths.

Related: How to Prepare for an Informal Interview

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Tips for writing an elevator pitch

Here are some extra tips to help as you create a compelling elevator pitch.

  • Keep it simple
  • Prepare different lengths for your elevator pitch
  • Narrow your idea down to one sentence
  • Focus on benefits

Keep it simple

The perfect elevator pitch is incredibly simple and can be understood by people who have no knowledge of your industry. In order to accomplish this, you should avoid all jargon or industry-related words that the average person wouldn't understand. One way to keep your pitch as simple as possible is to use this basic formula: I/We solve [problem] by providing [benefit], to help [ideal customer/client] accomplish [desired result].

Prepare different lengths for your elevator pitch

Depending on the situation, you may have different lengths of time to present your pitch. For example, if you are at a structured networking event where you have two minutes to introduce yourself, you will want to be prepared to speak for a bit longer. If you find yourself with only 20 seconds to tell someone who you are and what you do, you should be prepared for that as well. By creating pitches in varying lengths, you can always feel assured that you will be able to get your message across effectively and in an appropriate length of time.

Narrow your idea down to one sentence

When you are creating pitches of varying lengths, you should always have one that has been narrowed down to one sentence. When you're speaking with someone, consider leading with your one-sentence pitch. If the person you're speaking with follows up with a question, it's then a great opportunity to share your full elevator pitch or a variation of it.

Focus on benefits

If your pitch is about a product or service, you should focus on the benefits that your product will bring to its users rather than the features. If there are situations where a feature of the product or service makes it unique and different from the competition, you may want to include it, but wait until the end. Focus the majority of your pitch on what your product or service will allow people to do or accomplish.

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