There is no excuse for not having an elevator pitch (or at least
there is no good one!). My view is that when you have the 15-120
seconds in an elevator, it should be an opportunity to LISTEN
Here are some examples:
General I’m Rob, and I founded the Startup 2 Exit . Club to help innovative businesses on their journey from startup to exit. I’m doing it, as I have done that journey, and could have done with the help.
Crusading I’m Rob I work for the Startup 2 Exit .club, as we feel that running innovative businesses is really worthwhile, and there is no “goto” site for centralised information, and links.
Investor I’m Rob, and I founded the Startup 2 Exit .club, it helps innovative businesses on their startup to exit. We have no need of money at the moment, and no exit plans at the moment, but we are open to ideas.
BigHairyVision We want to build a hub for “KnowHow” information and “HelpWith” resources to make it significantly easier for entrepreneurs to make the journey from Startup to Exit
KeyStakeholder/Supplier/Customer We want to help entrepreneurs on their path from Startup to Exit. We supply free “HelpWith” assistance, such as the pitching club. Also we offer useful “KnowHow” from Gurus and people who have done start to exit before.
Some do’s and don’ts
DO make it easy for them to show an interest
DO make it personal
DO make it clear who you are helping, and a bit of how if possible
DON’T make it an obvious sales pitch, let people discover their interest (rather than shoving it down their throat!)
DON’T make this a recital of features.
What you hope will happen is that someone will say something like:
“Oh that’s interesting, I have a friend who is doing a startup”
If people do not show any interest, then maybe they are interested, and are just noting it for the future, or they are not interested.
Or someone might even say
“interesting…so what exactly do you do”
ATTENTION: there is a big hole here, do not walk into it.
This is not an opportunity to recite your entire business deck, and all the wonderful features you have done, and are intending to do. I MEAN IT
Well Startup 2 Exit does three things:
We do some academic and practical “Know How” stuff to help people in certain situations.
We do some free “Help With” sessions, such as free fortnightly pitching classes.
We also do some paid for “Help With” work for some selected companies.
The trick is to encourage and listen to the questions, not shove information at people.
This is something that we (I) came up with, when we were trying to get interviews for market validation, it helped them see the good that we were trying to do.
The Wikipedia Page on Elevator pitches, implies a much longer pitch, why do you recommend a short pitch?
Selling is knowing what people want/need to buy, and supplying it. As long as you are talking, you can not listen. So at least put some pauses in to encourage questions. Maybe it should be more of a shared and constructive conversation, then a pushy pitch.