Opportunities to deliver our elevator pitch often happen in social and unplanned situations, you just meet someone, and the automatic question is ‘what do you do?’

That is the opportunity for an elevator  pitch, rather than just a polite response.

You might deliver hundreds to those who are unmoved, but now and again, you can get lucky.

I have heard many delivered, and mostly they are a recitation of what someone does.

Not unreasonable given the question, but ineffective as a marketing tool.

For example, in my case, the typical elevator pitch would be:

“I am a marketing and strategy consultant with wide general management experience domestically and internationally. My background is largely in the food industry. Businesses with whom I have worked range from FMCG manufacturers, to those supplying into the FMCG supply chain with everything from produce, to raw materials, specialised ingredients and packaging, to services. The sorts of projects have ranged from  creating marketing strategy and programs, coaching sales staff on key account management, optimising  marketing effectiveness,  building collaborative farmer supply groups, optimising factory operations, contract general management, and everything in between. ”

This does describe me, but is pretty dull, and fails to get much traction.

To make an elevator pitch worth listening to, you have to successfully do three things:

  1. Get the attention and interest of the one you are speaking to. Best way to do that, perhaps  counter intuitively to most, is to ask a question.
  2. Having gained their attention, deliver the nature of  the service so that you  both know whether or not it may be of interest to them, or someone they may know.
  3. Finally, deliver the benefit that comes from working with you.


So, in summary it is a three part process:

Question: “Do you know that ….”

Description: “What I do is….”

Benefit: “So that…..”


Taking your own advice is sometimes hard, nevertheless, here it goes.

“Do you know that of the 250,000 businesses started every year in Australia,  70% fail in the first year, and only 10% survive 5 years?

What I do, is bring a depth of experience from across industries and functions with a focus on marketing, sales  and strategy, to small and medium sized businesses that they cannot afford and usually do not need on a full time basis.

That depth and breadth of experience radically increases their chances they are one of the 10% that survive, but more importantly, that they are one of the few truly successful businesses”


Try it for yourself, it does work.