I start to wonder what song I’m quietly humming to myself.
It’s not unusual for me to have a song stuck in my head, but it’s very unusual for me not to recognize it.
The song haunts me the rest of the day, all night long, and through my early workout the next morning.
Then my daughter sits down to practice her piano lesson…
I had no idea how much control my kids’ piano teacher has over the soundtrack to my day.
And it gets me thinking about your Elevator Pitch.
Because being stuck in someone’s head is an ideal outcome for your Elevator Pitch – but most go about being memorable in exactly the wrong way.
Well, here’s how I used to start my Elevator Pitch:
“Hi. I’m Andy and I’ve been in business for twelve years and I use improvisational acting techniques to…”
Let’s look at three reasons this isn’t a memorable approach, then a simple technique to make you instantly unique and memorable.
1. Your Name
Your name is your favorite word in any language. You can hear it whispered across the room at a noisy cocktail party. It will instantly wake you from a sound sleep. It’s unique and personal and you all in one word.
But notice… it’s your favorite word. It’s interesting to you – not to anyone else in the room (well, anyone who doesn’t coincidentally share your name, anyway).
If you want to get someone’s attention, you could start your Elevator Pitch with their name – that would get their attention. It’s just not practical in a room with more than one other person.
So I get it – your name sounds great to you at the beginning of your Elevator Pitch, but it’s not going to grab anyone’s attention.
2. Your Years in Business
People often want to use their Elevator Pitch to “prove their expertise.” Your years in business is one indicator of competence, in that the more years in business the more likely it is you know what you’re doing.
But in your Elevator Pitch, it’s too early for this information. They don’t know what you do yet, so your expertise isn’t in question, and the number of years you’ve been in business doesn’t help them understand how you help people like them.
I do recommend mentioning years of service in a sales call. Once you’re talking with someone who knows you can help them, that’s the time to go through the credentials that make you an expert.
But people listening to your Elevator Pitch only have one question. How can you help?
So starting with your name and years in business means that after those most crucial first five seconds you haven’t grabbed anyone’s attention.
3. Your Secret Sauce
Your Elevator Pitch is about the what – not the how.
When they first meet you, people aren’t interested in the technical details of how you do what you do. In fact, they probably won’t be interested in that even when they become a client.
People are interested in results. I don’t need to know how the car works to drive it. I don’t need to understand the details of digital marketing for you to help me make more online sales. And I don’t need to understand legalese for a lawyer to keep me out of hot water.
So… how can you be memorable?
Glad you asked! After all, that’s the whole purpose of this article.
Most people scratch their heads for hours (days? years?) to figure out what makes them unique, but the simpler (and more engaging approach) is to figure out what makes your prospects unique.
Who’s a good introduction for you?
I help business networkers write a unique and memorable 30-Second Elevator Pitch.
Who and what – not your name, years in business and secret sauce.
Because the way you want to be stuck in someone’s head is that they are talking to someone, and that someone says a key phrase that makes the first person think of introducing them to you.
Your Elevator Pitch teaches people how to prospect for you.
Your Elevator Pitch teaches them to recognize when they’re talking to someone who would be a great introduction for you.
And the way to get that stuck in people’s head is to be very specific about the kind of person you want to meet:
“Men in a second marriage”
“Authors who want to publish”
“First time home buyers”
“Mothers of teenage daughters”
Choose the one type of person that gets you into a great conversation.
A participant at a recent workshop resisted “senior software engineers who have toxic bosses.”
But as we talked about it more, a conversation about a toxic boss leads to great leads for her business.
She doesn’t work only with software engineers, but a lot of them have toxic bosses. And those are good conversations for her business.
Concerned about being too successful at networking, she tried to back off to “in a toxic work environment,” but that doesn’t have the same punch. It won’t start as many conversations.
In networking, conversations are the name of the game, and specifics start conversations.
Who, specifically do you want to meet?
A great referral for me is a business association or networking group that brings in keynote speakers.
Who’s a great introduction for you?