Posted on 15 May 2014

You know how you’ve heard about the job interview all being decided in the first 10 seconds? Well, the same can be said for a sales call (in person or over the phone). You (small business owner, salesperson) only really have about 10 seconds or so to interest the prospect, or you can kiss their attention goodbye. This is true even in a live, face-to-face meeting. Even though the prospect may be looking you in the eye and nodding his/her head, the individual is likely not really paying close attention, if your initial “elevator pitch” does not resonate.

The proverbial elevator pitch (aka elevator speech, positioning statement) is a 35 word (approximately) all-telling company statement that details who the company is, what it does, for whom it does it, the value of its products/services and what makes it special. Yes this is a lot to put into one sentence, but it is possible, and it is important.

Here are several elevator pitch examples:

Company 1’s flexible and open data quality software helps leading European organizations optimize their large customer databases for increased profitability, reduced cost, improved decision making and successful regulatory compliance. [29 words]

Company 2 is the fastest growing, longest-standing and 3rd largest global call recording provider offering the most secure, open and future-proof solutions for organizations to rapidly improve performance, optimize service, mitigate risk, lower cost and maintain compliance. [37 words]

Company 3 is a technology company helping specialty physicians and medical billing companies increase revenue up to 40%, productivity up to 20%, and regulatory compliance as much as 10% by streamlining and enhancing the patient billing process. [37 words]

Company 4 is the total wireless solutions company to beat, with the deepest integration expertise and product knowledge, a 99% client satisfaction rating, a 15-year successful history and the industry’s shortest installation and delivery times. [35 words]

Company 5 is the world’s fastest-growing, minority-owned, midsized provider of business consulting and IT solutions, arming organizations and systems integrators with breakthrough services, training, on-demand staffing and CTO-caliber leadership to optimize resources, reduce costs and accelerate performance. [37 words]

Company 6 is the number one provider of business intelligence and data warehousing solutions for mid-sized insurance carriers, providing actionable business information and deep insurance and technology expertise to maximize bottom-line performance and minimize risk. [35 words]

Company 7 offers the most encompassing, up-to-date, recognized and sought-after global training and certification programs for privacy and data protection, helping organizations enhance compliance and risk mitigation practices, and providing professionals with the insight needed to add more value to a business. [42 words]

In the course of creating your own elevator pitch, do not worry if it is longer than 35 words. The important thing is to ensure it encapsulates all of the necessary components, which I mentioned above. A good rule of thumb once you have drafted your elevator pitch is to go through it carefully and pull out every word that can be taken out without affecting the flow or meaning of the statement.

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