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This week’s post is from Ashley, who writes at A Lady Goes West.
If I asked you if you thought first impressions mattered, I’d imagine you would say “yes.” So if I asked you if you had an elevator speech, would you say “yes” to that one as well?
If you’ve never heard of an elevator speech, it’s a short introduction and an overview that you can recite about yourself or your business, explaining what you do and what you stand for. And you have to say it in the very short amount of time it takes to get into an elevator and ride a few floors with some strangers.
Of course, these days people are usually glued to their phones while in elevators and not making conversation, but the principle stands true. We all need some brief and concise messaging that we can carry around with us in our back-pocket at all times. It’s just a smart thing to be equipped with. You never know who you’ll meet when you head out of your home each day.
That’s just a picture of me with some food. Because I’m always smiling when I’m talking about food.
I first learned about elevator speeches (or elevator pitches, as they are also called) back in my days of working at a public relations agency. While my current job, day-to-day responsibilities, state-of-residence, work attire and so much more have changed since that particular role, I still like to have my own elevator speech ready so I can always try to make a good first impression.
WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE AN ELEVATOR SPEECH
Elevator speeches don’t just apply to the business setting — they are useful for everyone in many different situations. In fact, it’s the whole process and exercise of coming up with and writing it that makes you think about how you like to present yourself. Whether that’s to potential significant others, future friends, students, peers, coworkers, you name it. Having your thoughts boiled down is a great way to make a lasting first impression, which can help you in your professional, as well as your personal life.
THE CONTENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE ELEVATOR SPEECH
Your elevator speech should be unique to you. Grab a blank piece of paper (or blank Word document) and start writing out some of the following elements …
- Your name
- Your mission (which can also be your job title or job objective)
- Your unique selling point (what sets you apart from others)
- Your goals
- A call-to-action (what you want people to do after meeting you)
From there, you can highlight the important points and make it sound conversational.
You should be able to say all of this in maybe less than 100 words, or less than 30 seconds. And you don’t want to just ramble off facts, you want to infuse some excitement and narrative into your story as well. Be memorable and leave people wanting more.
Click here to read more and check out Ashley’s example elevator speeches that you can edit to fit your needs!