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Elevator Pitching – sell yourself, your comms, your… anything

Tags: Be interesting | Presentations | Meetings | Impact | Influencing

28th November

Imagine you’re networking.

And a stranger asks you The Most Popular Networking Question Ever:

       What do you do?

What’s your answer?

Most people’s is one of two:

  • Their job title – “I’m an Accountant”
  • Their main activity – “I prepare Tax Returns”

Both are correct.

But both are dull.

Also, they aren’t ‘conversation starters’, are they? In fact, the only response I can think of to “I’m an Accountant” is “Oh. Are you?”

Instead, when introducing yourself, focus on your AFTERs. In other words, why people are better-off AFTER you’ve done your work.

For example, the Accountant could say “I help people pay less tax than they thought possible”

Now, that is a conversation starter – “Wow – how do you do that?” And you’re off-and-running.

If saying your AFTERs feels odd, state your original sentence first (job title or main activity), and then your AFTERs. This means your options are:

  1. I’m an Accountant
  2. I prepare Tax Returns
  3. I help people pay less tax than they thought possible
  4. I’m an Accountant, so I help people pay less tax than they thought possible

The last two are much more interesting, and conversation-starting.

You can use AFTERs to introduce anything. For example, if you’re outlining your Marketing Strategy for next year, you could use one of these four introductions:

  1. Here’s our Marketing Strategy
  2. I’m going to tell you our Marketing Strategy for next year
  3. Here’s how we’ll ensure we hit all next year’s sales targets
  4. Here’s our Marketing Strategy, confirming how we’ll hit all next year’s sales targets

Again, the last two are miles better.

You’ll be introducing something today – yourself, your communications, your… anything.

And, after your first sentence, your audience will either be:

  • Leaning forwards – “Wow. Tell me more”; or
  • Leaning backwards – “I know what you’re about to talk about. But it sounds dull”

Which will it be?

Action Point

Re-write your introduction for your next communication. The more they see why they’re better-off AFTER listening to it, the more they’ll listen to you.

And some more AFTERs for you – to persuade more people to do what you want, more quickly and more enthusiastically, here are 143 new resources for you…