How to Create an Elevator Pitch

An elevator pitch is a quick statement made to entice an investor to consider investing in your idea or company. They are called “elevator pitches” because they are designed to be to delivered in the time it takes to ride the elevator. When done well, the elevator pitch is powerful. Yet, they are rarely done well. Instead, most pitches are longwinded sessions of corporate or tech lingo that means nothing.

elevator pitch

Photo courtesy of Flickr/Creative Commons/derekskey

A great example of the use of elevator pitches can be seen on the show Shark Tank, you get the idea of what is expected in a pitch.

Developing an Elevator Pitch

The basic pitch is made up of the following items. If you get only these points across, you have succeeded.

  1. The pain – What problem are you trying to solve?
  2. The value proposition – How does your idea solve that problem?
To be effective, an elevator pitch must:
  • Be quick – Most investors have a bit attention deficit. Get to the point.
  • Be simple to understand – Avoid the techie jargon. If your grandmother does not get it, dumb it down.
  • Show a profit – It has to be clear how you can make money.
You can go through these items filling in the blanks in a straightforward manner without any flash and be better than most pitches. However, if you wind these questions around a story, you have a powerful image of what you do and why they should care.
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See this great example of a pitch.

Elevator Pitches for Bootstraps

If you have read much of my blog, you know I prefer to bootstrap my ideas and therefore do not need to pitch to investors. So, why does a bootstrapper need to have a pitch? Because the same elements to sell an investor are needed to sell a customer.
As before, a pitch to a customer would look similar to the pitch to an investor.
  • The Pain – Define the pain so that the customer relates. If they do not have the pain, you are not talking to a potential customer.
  • The value proposition – Define the value to them. How do you relieve their pain? How much is it worth to make the pain go away?
You must also be
  • Quick
  • Simple to understand
Developing a good pitch is worth the time it takes. Just thinking through the answers to these questions so that you can do it quickly and simply helps you clarify your business ideas.

Question: What is your pitch for your idea?   You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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