How to Write an Elevator Speech

Elevator pitches are used in many situations, thus it is important to know how to write an elevator speech. Whether you are trying to raise capital, promote your business, or market yourself, it is essential to have an elevator pitch.

You essentially have one minute to describe yourself, your business, your goals, and your passions to a complete stranger.  Not only do you have to communicate your message quickly, but you will have to do it clearly and effectively in order to entice your audience to want to know more!

6 Easy Steps to Writing an Elevator Pitch

Step 1: Know your audience – Your elevator speech will be more effective if it is clearly targeted to the individuals are you speaking to. Customize your elevator pitch so that it is appropriate to your audience. Having a generic elevator pitch will not always be effective.

Step 2: Know yourself – You need to fully know and be able to define precisely what your proposition is before you can convince anyone of it. Describe what you are offering, the problems you can solve, and the benefits you can bring to a prospective employer or client.

For example, if you are trying to promote yourself to an employer, answer the following questions:

1)      What are your key strengths and skills?
2)      What are your key achievements and accomplishments?
3)      Why are you interested in the company or industry?
4)      What can you bring to the company? How can you be of a benefit to the employer?

Step 3: Outline your talk – Start making an outline of what you want an employer or client to know. At this stage, do not worry about going into details right away. Keep in mind the questions discussed in step 2 and simply bullet point your answers. Keep your outline to a few key bullet points. Your goal is to capture the listener’s attention and interest so that they want to learn more. You do not want to give them your whole life story! Any extraneous details will distract the listener from your core message.

Step 4: Write your elevator speech – Now that you have an outline of the key things you want to say, you can start writing your speech. Expand on the bullet points that you made in step 3 and structure them into complete sentences. Make good transitions so that your sentences flow smoothly.

Step 5: Edit your speech – The way we write and the way we speak tend to be very different. With that in mind, go through your written speech and change any long words or uncommon vocabulary into everyday language. Then, time yourself saying the speech aloud to get an idea of how long your speech is at this point. Cut out any unnecessary words and sentences and adjust your speech to about thirty to sixty seconds.

Step 6: Finalize and practice your elevator pitch – Practice your elevator pitch until you memorize it! You never know who you will bump into, so you want to have your speech ready for any chance meetings. Of course, just like any other speech, make sure your pitch sounds natural and not rehearsed. Ask your friends and family to listen to your speech and see if they have any suggestions or feedback.

Now that you know how to write an elevator speech, here are 3 essential elevator pitch tips to keep in mind.