Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Elevator Speech: How to Grab Your Prospects Attention!

It seems at every gathering I am asked the question: "So, what do you do?" For the longest time, I would answer something like this:

"I am the Head Honcho at The Washing Company and we wash dishes for restaurants."

Pretty exciting, eh? Heck of a conversation starter, isn't it? To be perfectly honest, you know what usually happened after I said this?

Frankly, not much. People said that's nice, only to start looking around for someone more interesting to talk to. This happened even when I was talking to restaurant owners. I suppose people just don't get us dish washers and what a valuable service we provide.

Result? Very low sales. The kids didn't get the new shoes, wife fed me rice water, and I felt like crap, a real looser. As I got tired of this, I had to find a better way, after finally realizing and accepting that at first no one really cares about who I am, my tile and what I do. What they do care about is their pain and to finding the solution to their pain. It's that simple.

So let me share with you my new elevator speech that really works miracles. Then I'll share with you the secret formula that you can use to develop your own elevator speech, for achieving greater sales success.

First, my new elevator speech:

"We work with restaurant owners who were sick and tired of loosing customers and loosing money because of dirty dishes, and in some case they were even on the verge of going out of business because of dirty dishes. By using our dish washing services, these same restaurant owners are now experiencing increases in sales by up to 250% because their customers really like our clean dishes. Customers are happy and these restaurant owners are making more money, by using our dish washing services."

Breaking this part, this elevator speech clearly conveys who we serve, what pain they are experiencing, and what value we deliver. So when I meet someone who is not in the restaurant business and isn't experiencing this pain, this doesn't connect with them, and that's OK for they are not my target market. But when they are and they are experiencing this very pain, I am in. The conversation moves forward and in more cases then not, we get a new client.

So, here's the secret formula for your use:

I work with _________(name of your target market)________who struggle with ____________(state their pain)________________and the negative impact on them as a result of the problem__________(name the negative impact)____________. Then go onto_____state the benefit they experience when they work with you____and the _______(positive impact they experience)_________.

When this gets attention, the prospect will often ask you something like: "Interesting, how do you do that". At this point, you can share a bit of how you do what you do. Better yet, you can ask them what caught their attention and then ask them to share with you the challenge they experiencing. People want to talk so by your ask asking questions and listening, your conversation will forward and result will be: more sales.

Try It, It Works.

PS While the story is true, the restaurant example is made up to protect the.......well, you know how that line goes. :)


Rebecca said...


Great post. It inspired me to rewrite our elevator speech.

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