Elevator Pitch – What, Where and How?

Imagine yourself attending a business summit. It is not a rocket science to guess that you are going to come across people holding top positions in their respective organisations. Business summits and conclaves are often a good time for socialising with such important people and broadening your network.

So coming back to your presence at the business summit. You come across the brand manager of your dream company and want him to consider hiring you. What do you do? For him you are nothing but a minuscule drop in the gigantic ocean.

People even at the top positions of their organisations are open to having conversations at summits but what makes them further entertained in the conversation is upto you. They are busy people and do not have time to chat with you. Hence you need a hook.

In situations like these, you never have more than 30 seconds to convey your message or idea to your listener. You need to impart it before their attention span exhausts. Such speech of persuasion is known as an “elevator pitch”.

What is an Elevator Pitch?

An elevator pitch is a brief, crisp, pre-prepared speech that explains what your organisation  does in a succinct manner. It is often a misconception that an elevator pitch is used only by a salesperson to sell his/her product.

Where else can you use an elevator pitch?

You could use it in election campaigns as the initial seconds of your speech decide if the audience considers paying attention to what you say next. You could use it to persuade your boss to try the new idea that you’ve come up with or explain who you are to someone etc.

A few aspects to keep in mind:

1) Keep distinct elevator pitches prepared for different circumstances. You never know when a situation decides to surprise you. Always be prepared. Always do your homework.

2) Always communicate your USP in your pitch. Tell your listener what sets you apart from your contemporaries.

3) In situations like these, the attention span of your listeners is diminutive. Hence, your pitch needs to be catchy. The shorter, the better.

4) I am someone who needs to make use of a lot of words to explain my idea to someone. I really struggle with framing shorter sentences. Hence, for the people who face the same problem as that of mine, PRACTICE. Just like the ancient adage goes, “Practice makes one perfect”. Practice so that you are less likely to forget important elements of your pitch.

5) Record your pitch when you practice it. That is how you know how to manipulate how your sound.

The person that you have known for the longest time is no one but yourself. Therefore, if you cannot even talk well about your own self, it can be off-putting. How can one not talk in a profusion about his/her own self? It is disappointing!

Having a pre-scripted, perfect elevator pitch is a prerequisite because it will always leave a lasting and positive imprint in the mind of your listeners. Think of your elevator pitch as a personal advertisement and you are already there!

– Shreya Dubey

Shreya Dubey is class of 2018 of the post graduate programme in public relations and corporate communications in india's leading institute of mass communications - score

Shreya is a student of the Class of 2018 of the PG Programme in Public Relations at SCoRe. She has completed her Bachelors in Mass Media from S.K. Somaiya College of Arts, Science and Commerce. She can be reached at Shreya Dubey on LinkedIn and @ShreyaDubey96 on Twitter.



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