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Elevator Pitch for a Non-Profit

“I work for a non-profit and we have dozens of programs. How do I cover that in my Elevator Pitch?”

There are two approaches to this, and in both cases you have to choose one thing to talk about.

One thing?

I know, I know.

But there might be someone in the audience who is interested in the other 20 things we do…

There probably is such a person in the audience, but you’re not going to get their attention by rapidly spewing a laundry list of services.

You’re going to get their attention by:

1. Talking about one specific success story

“In the past three months we’ve placed 11 kids in foster care.”

2. Talking about one upcoming event.

“On February 12th we’re holding our annual gala to support our foster care, back to work, and senior meals program.”

Did you catch that? We sneaked three programs into that Elevator Pitch (foster care, back to work, senior meals). This is the exception to the one thing rule. You can list three examples, as long as you don’t give more details. If you want to give details, then share a success story on one of them.

So you can give details on one thing, or give a quick list of three things.

So when do you get to talk about all the other cool things you do?

At a 1-to-1.

The goal of your Elevator Pitch is to start conversations.

The 1-to-1’s are where you start developing relationships.

The people who want to continue the conversation over coffee are interested in the breadth and depth of what you do.

How do you pick which project to talk about?

Talk about one project (or event) for two months.

Pay attention to people’s responses. Do they nod and smile? Do they come running up to you to ask a question? Do they run in the other direction?

Now you have a baseline.

Then talk about a different project for two months.

Compare the responses.

Then use the better one for two months.

Then pick a different one.

You’ll quickly find the story that best grabs people’s attention, and that’s your Elevator Pitch!

Here’s how to do an Elevator Pitch for kids…

What’s your favorite non-profit project?

Do you offer a lot of services and aren’t sure which to focus on for your Elevator Pitch? I can write your Elevator Pitch or you can learn to write your Elevator Pitch. Both approaches take about an hour.

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