It is my firm belief that virtually every person in business for her- or himself needs a killer elevator speech. Yes, that means you, too. Wondering why a killer elevator speech is so important? See if you recognize yourself in any of these scenarios:
1. You want a great response to the question "what do you do?" because you've noticed when you reply that you're a consultant, the conversation stops right there, the other person's eyes start to glaze over, and you start to panic because you don't know how to revive this conversation without saying something that you know is guaranteed to put your listener to sleep, and in your heart you know that very few people want to be "educated" about insurance, investment opportunities, or anything else a consultant is selling.
2. You want a clear, concise and wildly attractive (as in magnetic) value message that you can use in your sales presentations, on your web site, in the voice mail messages you leave, in your own voice mail greeting, on your business cards, and when you introduce yourself so that you stand out from your competitors.
3. You want to attract clients to you rather than chase them down. OK, maybe I'm just plain lazy, but I find it much easier and quicker to get clients using the principle of attraction rather than going on endless (and often fruitless) client scavenger hunts.
4. You want to prospects to self-qualify by indicating interest in your deliverable(s). You never know who is going to respond to your offer, or who will want your product or service (it's not like people wear signs). Having a killer elevator speech that attracts your ideal clients helps you identify your prospects immediately (even when you don't recognize them on your own).
5. You want to attract your best prospects to you so that you can convert them into clients quickly and easily. I don't know about you, but I prefer to close sales as soon as possible with as little effort as I can get away with. I've found the best way to do that is to attract the people who really want and need my services, so that the sales process is relatively short and painless for both of us.
6. You want to be perceived as credible, competent, and professional. If you're tap dancing around what you do, and refuse to (or can't) be specific about your value to your clients, you're not going to be viewed as a top resource. People respect the professional who knows what she does for her clients, and can articulate it in a few well-chosen words. By the way, your prospects can also tell when you're so desperate for clients that you're willing to say anything to get the sale, whether or not you're a good fit for the client's needs.
7. You want everyone you meet to remember you, what you do, and who would be an ideal referral for you. People can't refer to you if they don't have a clear idea of what you do, and they won't remember more than 10 words about you, guaranteed. That's why your elevator speech needs to specify both your ideal client as well as your deliverables or client outcomes, and be memorable.
8. You don't want to fumble for words or say the wrong thing to a prospect or potential referral partner. After all, the first time you're speaking to your prospects is very much like an audition or a job interview. Your prospects are drawing conclusions (or making judgments, however you like to frame it) about you, your capabilities, and your potential value to them, all within the first 3.5 seconds of meeting you. Does it come as a surprise that you make a far better impression when you're prepared?
9. You want permission to explain in more detail what you do for your clients, so you need a compelling, concise and attractive elevator speech that prompts people to ask for more information. Remember, the two questions that people ask themselves when you're talking about your business are: Is he talking about me? Do I want what she's talking about? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, then you will be granted about 30 seconds to make your case. If the answer to both questions is no, then it's time to move on. And frankly, isn't it better to know that sooner, rather than later?
10. You don't want to bore people to tears within 30 seconds of meeting them. The sad truth is that most people have the attention spans of gnats, thanks to our culture of instant gratification, but you can use that to your advantage by crafting an attention-getting elevator speech that speaks directly to the deepest desires of your ideal clients. Unless, of course, you enjoy being known as a bore.
There may be a few reasons you need a killer elevator speech that I haven't listed here, but these should be enough for you to at least consider developing your own killer elevator speech.
So, what's keeping you from getting your own killer elevator speech now? If you need help, visit my web site for a free tool that will help you craft a killer elevator speech.
By Veronika Noize
Image by Marad777