In the second edition of my book “Networking like a Pro”, I share one of the biggest mistakes I see business professionals make. It is trying to be everything to everyone. Having a target market for focusing your efforts makes networking more effective.
Staying in Your Lane
Have a clear understanding of who your ideal clients actually are. This is your strategy. When you try to be everything to everyone, you wind up being very little to anyone. Identify the types of businesspeople that make up your target market. This allows you to better focus your resources in the areas that are most likely to provide success.
I used to hate the expression: “Elevator Pitch” − it just drove me crazy. But everybody is using it all over the world, so I now give up − I’m going to go with it!
The expression developed from the idea of literally being in an elevator with only one minute or less to say who you are and what you do. What would you say? I want you to keep in mind that your elevator pitch is not a sales pitch . . . it is a creative and succinct way to share who you are and what you do that generates interest in the listener.
With that in mind, here are Ivan’s 5 rules for an engaging Elevator Pitch:
1) Don’t do your pitch in an elevator! The elevator pitch is meant to be taken out of the elevator and into the real world. And, although you must practice it carefully to be able to present it cohesively and professionally, you also need to be natural. You want to rehearse not sounding rehearsed, if you know what I mean. I’m sure you’ve all seen people who, when they do theirs, you can almost envision them as being back in that elevator: you just press a button, and they are off! You want to avoid sounding staged and canned.
2) K.I.S.S. Keep it simple. Don’t try to explain everything you do in the short amount of time allotted. It will either be too much information or be too vague to be of any value. By keeping your elevator pitch simple, you have more of a chance to catch the listener’s attention, engage them with your creativity, and create interest in your product or services.