The perfect pitch can help you out with many opportunities in life; job interviews, presenting to clients, even asking someone on a date.

But the perfect Elevator Pitch can come in particularly handy if you have your own business and need to communicate concisely and quickly its unique benefits, your own personal talents, the solution you bring to your market and to work towards the hopeful outcome of engaging a new client, investor or valuable contact.

Yesterday, as part of North East Business Week 2015, Elevator and Business Gateway hosted a free event at our Centre for Entrepreneurship designed to teach delegates how to ‘magically enhance’ their Elevator Pitch. The session was great fun, engaging and educational - run by professional trainers and magicians Jeff Burns and Ivor Smith from Fifth Dimension.

Fifth Dimension NEBW Elevator Pitch

The Fifth Dimension team was kind enough to provide us with a recap of their top tips, and we share this with you here.

Elevator and Business Gateway have now launched our Video Pitch Competition!

This is an opportunity to win £1,000 for your business by simply submitting a winning 60 second Elevator Pitch. We hope the below tips come in handy for your submission.

What is an Elevator Pitch?

Your Elevator Pitch should be a concise, well-practiced description of your business, delivered with conviction and enthusiasm that your anyone should be able to understand. 

What Goals should your Elevator Pitch have?

•    capture the investor / buyers attention
•    create a compelling argument for why someone should invest in your idea or buy from you
•    secure a longer conversation
•    secure another meeting that can help you move forward with your project/business
•    to be memorable

Top ten tips for what to include in your Elevator Pitch

1. Include an introduction to yourself and your business

Your pitch should include a brief, easy-to-understand sentence that includes your name, your company name and the service you provide. Try to establish credibility in this pitch, with inclusion of your position in the company, the company track record, are you unique / the first / the best?

2. Add a teaser

Is there an interesting fact, figure or statistic that will grab the listener’s attention - i.e. 'my business can save your company £2,000 per month' (now I’m listening!) Remember your goal is to immediately engage someone so that he or she is intrigued and wants to learn more.

3. Subject

What is your message and your story? What do you want your audience to understand?  When your time is up they must know exactly what you want from them. Cut the jargon and avoid industry terminology.

4. Include ‘the Hook’

What’s in it for them? Make sure your pitch is relevant to the person you’re pitching to, be clear about what your business can do for them. What is the solution to their problem that you provide? How can you save the company money? How can you help the company staff? What value do you provide?

5. Show proof of demand / a track record.

Give examples of how your product / service / idea has benefitted someone else. Investors want to know that you understand your market and how your product or service fits into it. Buyers like testimonials that show the product / service works in the real world.

6. It’s all about You

Emphasise your own uniqueness and your added value compared to others; what special things only you can bring. Your vision – demonstrate your knowledge of the market and what your short and long term goals for your business are. Highlight your growth potential.

7. Summary and a call to action.

Remember to end with a strong summary of your key messages and reinforce the reason they should invest in or buy from your company. Ask for what you want, and make sure you find out the best way to keep in touch.

8. Pulling it together.

Write down the most important things you want to get across about yourself, your company, your service or product, what you do, what you have achieved, your goals, who you serve and why. Focus on the most interesting or memorable facts—the ones that really make you stand out from others. Eliminate redundant, unnecessary or unclear information, get rid of jargon and polish the good stuff - “I’ve exceeded my sales goals every quarter for the last two years” sound a lot better than “I’m great at sales.”

9. Short and concise is the key.

Keep your elevator pitch between 30 and 60 seconds. A short pitch is most effective in holding the listener’s attention.
Use short sentences and straightforward language, Albert Einstein said, “If you can’t explain it simply, then you don’t understand it well enough.

10. Practice makes perfect.

Take every opportunity to practice your pitch – for friends, family, and colleagues. Ask for constructive feedback from an outside observer and use it to hone your pitch. Video and audio record your pitch - listen to your tone—make sure it’s friendly, non-threatening, and that you’re not talking a mile a minute. Make sure you’re not repeating words and that you’re sending the message you really want to convey.

Thanks to Jeff and Ivor from Fifth Dimension for a fantastic session and their great follow on tips. Best of luck to all of you entering our Video Pitch competition.

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