Do you have a Well-Prepared Elevator Speech?

Posted on 05/19/2014 in Prospecting and Business Development

An elevator speech will sharpen your ability to claim and communicate value in initial conversations with customers. There is truth in the saying that you only have one chance to make a first impression. 

These four guidelines will help make your elevator speech memorable and effective:
  1. Keep it to two minutes or less.  The biggest mistake is to say too much.
  2. Describe the specific solutions you could provide this customer.  
  3. Highlight a differentiator about your company, products, and services.
  4. Describe your personal and company credibility and value
An elevator speech communicates the value that your company and your products/services provide, as well as your organizational and personal credibility/credentials.  Your elevator speech should concisely communicate what you can do for the other person and why he or she should buy from you.  

What is your Value Statement?  In your value statement you should express the likely results (such as cost savings, productivity gains, improved performance, better image, etc.) that you can achieve for the customer based on similar work in like industries or situations.  Ideally, cite one or more relevant differentiators. 
What is your Credibility Statement? In your credibility statement , cite customer testimonials and references. It helps to talk in the customer’s language to show that you understand their business and issues. Include your personal and organizational credentials. For example: "I’ve been in the industry for over 10 years,” or "We’ve worked with other coatings manufacturers that have experienced very similar issues as those expressed by you.”

Planning Questions to Customize Your Elevator Speech
Your elevator speech should highlight anything that differentiates your company.  Use these planning questions:
  1. Which strengths would be most relevant for this customer and decision-maker? (value statement)
  2. If you know who the competitor is, highlight a relevant differentiator. In other words, why should this customer select your company instead of one of your competitors? (value statement)
  3. What have your best customers who are similar to this person’s company said about why they appreciated or valued your services? (credibility statement)
  4. What can you say to demonstrate that your company and you personally have expertise in this market segment or product/service? (credibility statement) 
Visit the Elevator Speeches Sales Meeting Kit page for additional information.