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PO Box 920559
Needham, MA 02492

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The Hook that Prevents your Elevator Pitch from Being Forgotten

This time, when the shower drain backs up, I grab a wire coat hanger.

A friend has shown me a trick that side-steps purchasing a snake from Amazon, dumping gallons of Drano into the sewer, and that panicked off-hours emergency call to the plumber.

Stretch out a wire hanger, and dip the hook into the drain.

Remember – I’m not a home maintenance professional – this worked effortlessly for me but your mileage may vary.

Each time I dip the hook into the drain, it pulls up gobs of gunk – slimy and extremely disgusting gunk – the very gunk that had been, well, gunking up the drain.

And it gets me thinking about your Elevator Pitch

Because chances are, your Elevator Pitch is circling the drain, about to slip away, never to be heard from again.

Most Elevator Pitches aren’t memorable.

And others are memorable for the wrong reasons.

From the Elevator Pitch point of view, being memorable doesn’t come from telling jokes (unless you’re a stand-up comedian), dressing loud (unless you’re a clown), or being outlandish (unless you’re Elon Musk).

Because the goal isn’t for you to be remembered.

It’s for you to be remembered in the context of your best clients.

You want to give people a particular phrase to listen for – a phrase that associates you with good introductions for you.

This means being oddly specific about who you work with and what they’re trying to do.

Here’s an example:

Marketing types love this phrase (I hear it all the time):

I help business owners amplify their brand

It sounds ok – and is an accurate description of what they do – but it won’t lead to leads for two reasons.

  1. People don’t wake up in the morning, turn to their spouse, and say “Today’s the day, Honey! I’m going to amplify my brand.” What do they say? “I should get started on LinkedIn.” “I need to look into direct mail.” “What was that book on marketing you recommended?” I call this the pillow test. Are you using words that people actually use to describe their situation? Those words are the hook for getting in touch with you.
  2. Business owners is such a broad term. I know people who own moving companies, landscaping companies, bio tech firms, hospitals, networking groups, training companies, entertainment companies, … They can’t all be good leads and I don’t know how to sort them. I call this the Name Game test – do people come up with the name of a person they want to introduce you to. The more specific you are the easier it is for people to think of good introductions. 

Here’s what two different clients came up with:

I write email newsletters for accountants

I’m a sign spinner for specialty food stores

Chances are you now have an accountant and a specialty food store in mind.

That’s a good Elevator Pitch!

Here are hundreds of Elevator Pitch hooks sorted by industry

The water gushes eagerly down my shower drain again.

Don’t let it take your Elevator Pitch with it!

Add a hook that inspires people to think of good introductions for you.

What’s your hook – who’s a good introduction for you?

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