Networking Your Way to Profits: Part 2 'Creating Your Elevator Speech'

Carol Bentley

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At the end of ‘The Power of the Elevator Speech’ article I promised another example of an elevator speech and hot insights to making your elevator speech ‘hit the spot’- so here goes…

Have you ever been introduced to someone and when you ask what they do they’ve replied “Oh, I’m an accountant” or “I’m a solicitor/attorney” or “I’m a financial adviser”. Ya-awn! Bo-oring!

Did you know that there are different aspects to accountancy, finance and the law that can be quite fascinating. No, really! But only if they hit your hot-spot. Because when someone says ‘accountant’ or ‘finance adviser’ it is so-oo easy to assume we know all we need to know, isn’t it?

But how about…

“Well, you know how some business owners are just too busy to keep an eye on the financial aspects of their business, which means they are often paying too much tax or worse, missing the danger signs of the business heading for insolvency, don’t you?”

“What I do is keep an eye on the business finance, save on taxes and provide timely management reports, which means the business owner can still keep their finger ‘on the profit pulse’ whilst driving their business growth. ”

Don’t you think that sounds more interesting than “I’m an accountant”?

And once you’ve got your main ‘Elevator Speech’ sorted you can distil it down into a 1-liner like this!

“I stop companies over-paying on taxes”

Developing Your Own Elevator Speech

Find the answers to these questions and you have the start of your elevator speech.

Step 1: What is the real problem you can solve for people? If not a problem, how can you enhance their life or experience – home, personal, health, wealth or business?

If you’re not sure, ask your existing customers or clients what they were specifically looking for when they purchased from you.

Step 2: What was the consequences of this problem or lack of something? Were they losing sales? Friends? Income? Home comforts? Again, ask your existing customers if you are not clear about the ‘which means…’

Step3: What do you supply (product or service) that addresses this need? How can you resolve their problem?

Step 4: What benefits will people enjoy? What are the consequences of taking advantage of what you offer? Are they happier, richer, healthier, more profitable, more productive?

Now hone the answers you’ve got into short, succinct statements and precede each with the template words:

Step 1 “You know how…
Step 2 “Which means …
Step 3 “Well, what I do is…
Step 4 “Which means …

Nuances to Consider

A few things to keep in mind;

1) Always say “You know how some people/companies/businesses…” Nobody likes to be told they’ve got it wrong. You have to be subtle; saying some people or some companies implies it’s a problem other people or companies have – not you or the person you are speaking to. If he identifies with the problem you describe he can ask questions and if he doesn’t, you haven’t insulted him by implying he does.

2) Being an observant sort of person, you probably noticed in the examples I included the words “don’t you?” at the end of the first ‘which means’, didn’t you? Including these words gets the other person nodding their head (or thinking “Yes”) in agreement with you. It involves them in what you are saying, starts to create rapport and opens them up for the ‘solution’ you are going to describe.

3) Be specific wherever possible. If you can quote figures that catch people’s attention it makes your speech more memorable and people seek you out to find out more.

Let me give you my elevator speech to demonstrate what I mean…

“You know how some companies send out sales letters and get very low numbers in response, which means they spend hundreds or thousands of pounds ($) on printing and postage with very little return, don’t you?

Well, what I do is increase the response to those letters by anything from 262% to 353%, or even more, without spending a penny (¢) extra on print and postage, which means they get a substantial increase in sales and profits. ”

The figures you quote, which must be truthful because you may be asked to substantiate them, makes your speech far more credible and intriguing.

Develop and Practice

Work on the real solutions you offer, especially if you can identify something that is unique to you or your company. And use the speech whenever you can. At first you will feel awkward giving this little ‘speech’. But after practising and saying it a few times it will become more natural.

At this stage you might be tempted to change the wording. Do be careful – the structure is important. You don’t want to lose the opportunity to intrigue new people you are introduced to, and getting the opportunity to expand your network of contacts. Creating a very ‘woolly’ version of this powerful technique might do just that.

In the ‘Networking Your Way to Profit – Part 3’ article I reveal Your Hidden Marketing Opportunity… until then keep working on your Elevator Speech…

©2005 Original Work by Carol Bentley

Author of ‘I Want to Buy Your Product. . . Have You Sent Me a Letter Yet? (How to create powerful sales letters, advertisements, flyers, brochures, web pages and newsletters that persuade hundreds, or even thousands, of additional customers and clients to buy from you!) by Carol A E Bentley (Rated 5-star on

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