Question: What’s your best tip for putting together a one-sentence elevator pitch, and why?
The answers below are provided by members of FounderSociety, an invitation-only organization comprised of ambitious startup founders and business owners.
1. Use a Framework
Here are the important parts of a good framework: introduce your company name, who your target users are, the problem these users face, your solution to their problem and how your solution is better than others. Then, describe your pricing model and what users will receive in exchange for payment.
— Michael Lisovetsky
2. Keep it Short, Sweet and To-the-Point
When creating an elevator pitch for yourself or your business, make sure it’s short, sweet and to-the-point. For example, if you are an SEO agency, you should say “We can rank your site at the top of search results above your competitors at the lowest guaranteed rate possible.” This would be a perfect elevator pitch: there is no question about what you do or how it will benefit someone.
3. Differentiate Yourself
If you only have one sentence, you’d better make it attention-grabbing. The key is to differentiate yourself from the crowd immediately. The human mind is curious by its very nature, so pique its interest by identifying a unique quality about your business.
4. Make it Relatable
It’s not enough to describe your business in one sentence, which means you need the listener to rely on his/her personal experience to fill in the gaps. Know who you’re pitching to and have different one-liners prepared for industry insiders, potential partners, consumers and investors. If done right, they should be able to “get it” after one sentence.
5. Keep it Simple But Significant
You should be able to sufficiently explain what you do in one sentence in a tight spot. Investors LOVE that. In your one-sentence pitch, you should say who you are, what you do, who you target and how you help them. I’ll use my company as an example: “As founder of The Professional Wingman, I help professional singles find long-term love by helping them develop better social skills.”
— Thomas Edwards
The Professional Wingman®
6. Cut the Fluff
Your pitch should explain clearly what your product is trying to accomplish. You want to make sure you keep it concise so the person you are pitching to does not lose interest. Take out any unnecessary language, and get to the benefit of your product or service ASAP.
— Michael Rheaume
7. Don’t Stress on it Actually Being One Sentence
It’s important to keep it short, but honestly, sometimes “short” doesn’t effectively encapsulate the value proposition. If you need two sentences to prove how unique the company is, then use two. What’s more important to focus on is time. If you can’t say it in under 30 seconds, then it’s too long.
8. Break it Down and Leave Room for Questions
Break down the highlights of your business into bullet points. Then, combine it into two or three effective sentences and communicate your pitch to five or more people who aren’t familiar with your business yet. Give them a chance to ask questions and keep your answers relevant and concise. It’s the most time-efficient strategy!
FounderSociety is an invitation-only organization comprised of ambitious founders and business owners.
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