The other day I was in a pizza place and
struck up a conversation with the owner. He mentioned that he had a home
business in addition to that restaurant and it was doing very well.
"Great! Tell me about it!"
He proceeded, for the next five minutes, to
explain. It was on the Internet. Doctors and lawyers are doing this as a
side business and are doing very, very well. He said "It's a sort of
mall on the Internet, you should check it out." He gave me the web
address and then he had to tend to a customer.
I had no idea what he did.
Can you explain your business clearly to a
complete stranger in 20 seconds or less? Can you do it in such a way that,
if they are in a position to use your product or service they will want to
know more? If not, you have some work to do!
Whenever and wherever you go you will meet
potential customers, and you may not have much time to talk to them. If
you cannot clearly explain your business in a very short time, you could
lose an opportunity to interest someone in what you do; someone that would
be a good prospect if they knew.
This is commonly referred-to as an
"elevator speech". Why? Because if you got on an elevator with
someone and, on the way up, they asked, "What do you do?" you
would only have a few seconds to tell them before one of you reached your
You cannot possibly tell your entire
business story in such a short time, but that is not the objective. The
objective is to break it down to its most essential elements, and get them
to ask for more.
Several years ago I went to a high school
reunion (never mind which one!) and saw a friend that I hadn't seen since
graduation. I asked him what he did for a living. He said "I fix
bones!" (It was pretty noisy and I thought he said, "I fix
phones", but that's another story.) That grabbed my interest, so I
asked him to tell me exactly what that meant and he explained that he was
an orthopedic surgeon, he had his own practice, was chief of orthopedic
surgery at a major local hospital, and that he specialized in foot
disorders. Ba-da-bing, ba-da-boom! He grabbed me with the "elevator
speech" (in this case, just three words) and then, once he had my
interest, took more time to tell me the details. Perfect!
Work on your elevator speech. Practice it out loud when you are alone; it
will get better the more times you say it. Then, when those big potential
customers come along, you'll be ready to hook 'em and reel 'em in!
What's my elevator speech? I thought
you'd never ask...
"I help people make more money and have
more fun with their small or home based businesses."
you like to use this article in your own publication, e-zine, newsletter,
or website? Click