Ready to Plant Some Seeds?

Yesterday, we talked about growing your business by telling all the people you know about your copywriting business. For more details, you can read “Be Specific – You Just Might Get What You Ask For” right now.

So you’ve told all your peeps, and they’re busy spreading the word – planting seeds – for you and your business …

But what happens when you meet someone new and they ask, “What do you do?”

I confess, I used to stammer and stutter. The question threw me into a tailspin. I never answered the same way twice.

I’m in quite a few networking groups, and when I represented my old J-O-B, I had an introduction that would just roll off my tongue.

So this new hesitation and lack of clarity was astounding! Why couldn’t I tell people what I do in my own business?

Maybe it’s because as a copywriter, I am my business. I am my product. It’s so much more personal than talking about a third-person company and their products or services.

Whatever the reason, it was very counterproductive. So I fixed it!

I took the same specific details I was sharing with the people I know – the who, what, and why from “Be Specific – You Just Might Get What You Ask For – and sat down to craft my 30-second introduction, my “elevator speech,” to use with people I’m meeting for the first time.

Here’s the basic template I started with. You can use it, too – just fill in the blanks:

I’m a freelance copywriter, and I help (your target market) with (your services) so that they (your benefits).

Actually writing it down helped me clarify and condense my introduction down to about 15 seconds. Practice helped even more.

So now, when I meet someone new and they ask me, “What do you do?” here’s what I say:

“I’m a freelance copywriter, and I help businesses – especially those in the wine industry – increase their online visibility, credibility, and profitability through their web content and social media.”

You’ll notice that I edited and rewrote my template a bit … hey, that’s what we writers do!

Nine times out of 10, the person who hears my introduction will ask for more information. The seeds have not just been planted; they’re already sprouting, and we’re having a conversation …

For example, sometimes that person will say, “We have a Facebook page for our business, but we don’t really know what to do with it.” Or sometimes it’s, “I know a guy who wants to start a blog for his business. Do you do that?”

Now I’ve moved from meeting a casual acquaintance to having a potential new client or referral. YEAH, I do that!

I’d love to hear your answer to the “What do you do?” question! Please share your elevator speech in the comments.

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Published: August 14, 2012

5 Responses to “Ready to Plant Some Seeds?”

  1. Your are so right! When I was a reporter that rolled off my tongue with ease. I floundered when I thought about my elevator speech. This helps a lot...
    "I'm a freelance writer and I help individuals and small business tell their stories." ... it's a start.

    Guest (Zelda)August 14, 2012 at 8:14 pm

  2. Hi Michele,

    Your elevator speech reminded me of my book by Kim Klaver entitled "If My Product's So Great How Come I Can't Sell it?" She gives templates to use to speak to others about one's business.

    My elevator speech, using your template:

    I am a freelance publicist and help small businesses increase their visibility, credibility and profitability through press releases.

    How's that?

    Guest (Clara Mae)August 14, 2012 at 8:35 pm

  3. Point well often we are afraid to ask for exactly what we want, and then are disappointed when we don't get it. As the elders used to say, "a closed mouth doesn't get fed!"

    My elevator pitch goes something like this...

    "I help small businesses use the internet to get more customers and clients."

    Direct Response Design DivaAugust 14, 2012 at 8:59 pm

  4. I'm a freelance copywriter, and I write persuasive direct-response and online sales content to help self-help and natural health marketers grow their business. Specifically, I help my clients introduce their products and services as an effective solution to their customers' problems.

    Jerry BuresAugust 15, 2012 at 5:33 pm

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