60 Seconds that Could Make or Break Your Career

Woman and man in elevator smiling and shaking hands

Let’s say you have just 30 to 60 seconds to convince a potential client he needs your services …

Maybe you’re in line at Starbucks, or riding the elevator at an event where your ideal clients are in attendance …

Are you prepared to do it effectively so he’ll give you an opportunity to prove you’re the one to hire?

This is where your “elevator pitch” comes in.

The idea behind an elevator pitch is this. You’re in an elevator with a potential client. You have at best 60 seconds before the doors open and he or she walks out.

In that 60 seconds (or less), you must describe what you do, your core benefits, and give a compelling call-to-action.

Of course, you’ll use your elevator pitch any time you tell someone what you do professionally. Like at Job Fair.

Here’s how to do that …

Elevator Pitch Strategy #1:
What’s your core benefit?

When you start writing your elevator pitch (and YES, you must write it out), start by writing down the five biggest benefits you offer.

Be niche specific.

Let’s say you’re a web writer specializing in search engine optimized copy for the pet industry.

What five benefits can you bring your client?

Once you’ve written them down, carve that list to your biggest, most important benefit. (If you have time in your pitch, you could add one more.)

Elevator Pitch Strategy #2:
What’s your USP?

Once you have your core benefit, determine your USP (Unique Selling Proposition).

It doesn’t have to be unique among all copywriters in your niche. But find something that sets you apart.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #3:
Know your audience

A good pitch depends on the audience you're trying to reach. Lead with information the recipient cares most about, and the rest will follow.

This means you won’t craft only one elevator pitch … but several.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #4:
Avoid jargon

You may want to impress on a client that you’re industry savvy and know their jargon.

BAD IDEA!

Prove you can communicate clearly … not only to her, but to her customers who may not know that jargon.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #5:
Less is more … keep it short

Sixty seconds spoken at a normal rate — not rushed so you can say everything you want — works out to 150 to 250 words.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #6:
Tell what you do … not who you are

Instead of saying, “I’m an SEO copywriter who …” say, “I craft SEO copy that ensures your website will …” To make sure you do this, avoid saying “I am.” Instead, use an active verb after “I.”

Elevator Pitch Strategy #7:
Have a call-to-action

Your elevator pitch is a short sales piece. You’re trying to sell yourself. So, you must have a call-to-action.

Your call-to-action is something like, “If you’d like more information on how I can increase your web response, please call me or send an email.”

Said while you’re graciously offering your business card. Offering, not thrusting.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #8:
Edit like crazy

You edit all your sales pieces. And your elevator pitch is one of your most crucial. Edit. Edit. Edit some more.

Elevator Pitch Strategy #9:
Practice like crazy

Practice in front of a mirror. Practice with family and friends. Practice so the words come naturally to you when you’re giving your pitch. When you do, the words not only will come naturally, they’ll sound natural … and so will you.

Talking about your elevator pitch reminds me of a quote attributed to Mark Twain. (It might be apocryphal.)

“I was going to write you a short letter, but I didn’t have the time. So, I wrote you a long one instead.”

Writing small is difficult. It comes to fruition only after you’ve put in much work.

Your elevator pitch deserves the time and effort you must put into it.

Have you crafted your elevator pitch yet? Share it with me in the comments below! And if you haven’t, let me know what’s holding you back.

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Published: July 27, 2017

6 Responses to “60 Seconds that Could Make or Break Your Career”

  1. I have been trying to get a clear picture on how well to get fully involved but I couldn't, the whole thing has been abstract to me maybe it is because of my environment. Can you give me an advice to put it to action. Moreover I am a student and an entrepreneur. Thanks

    Guest (Ekene )

  2. ELEVATOR PITCH – Robert Vollay

    Hi, My Name is Robert -
    1. I help business owners promote and grow their businesses by supplying them with copy-written materials that have high potentials to increase their customer base and revenue.

    2. I do professional copywriting for businesses within the Natural Health industry- the goal is to attract more customers to your business, so as to increase your Profit Margin.

    If your desire is to grow your business, increase profit margin and have customers sending YOU more referrals, please contact me today or ASAP at:

    Email: rvollay at gmail dot com

    One more thing: Please visit my website to take a look at some of my work:
    vollay-naturalhealthcopywriter dot eq dot com

    ROBERT V

  3. Actual conversation at a fundraiser: Client: What do you do? Me: I'm a writer that handles sales and marketing copy for companies. Client: Do you do newsletters? Me: Yes. Client: Call me on X date. Me: Will do. Client hands me a sample of the newsletter and her card. I hand her my card.

    New client two weeks later. Done. Easy. Sometimes simple is best.

    Guest (Bette)

  4. Hi, I have read the article on the Elevator Pitch before and wrote one introductory elevator pitch for me. I practiced as I was told by Will Newman but ....Alas...when I was introducing myself to a group of volunteers in the library where I'm also a volunteer, all my preparations banged.
    I was spellbound after saying,"I'm a copywriter." What should I do to avoid this dismal situation next time?

    Nusrat

  5. I've work in insurance industry for almost 3 decades! And guest it's not too late to convert to an SEO insurance copywriter.

    Five Benefits I can bring to my clients to attract audience by crafting SEO copy on:-

    1. Ultimate guide for the best insurance cover to have
    2. Latest development and trends in the insurance industry
    3. Reviews of latest products and recommendations
    4. Common mistakes and misjudgements in taking up insurance cover
    5. Technical guide on insurance procedures and claims

    Fendi

  6. Elevator Speech; Hi, I'm Clement. I am a Grant copywriter for non-profit organization, such as salvation army, homeless shelters, schools.. I write to appropriate channel to seek their assistance/fund to help the non profit organizations to function in their obligation of providing for the needs.
    I have my phone numbers and e-mail address on this card, please don't hesitate to contact me.

    Guest (clement)


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