Master The Elevator Speech Pitch

Elevator speeches don’t always have to be given in an elevator
Elevator speeches don’t always have to be given in an elevator
Image Credit: Neal Patel

So here’s a quick question for you: have you ever head of an “elevator pitch”? If you haven’t, then perhaps I should introduce to you what it is and why it should be important to all of us. The thinking behind an elevator pitch is exactly what its title implies. The thinking is that if you found yourself traveling on an elevator with a very important person who’s attention you wanted to get, what would you tell them? An elevator pitch is designed to allow you to use the importance of public speaking to make an impression in less than 60 seconds. As speakers who don’t always control how much time we have to give a speech, it turns out that mastering the art of the elevator speech is a critical skill for all of us.

How To Create A Great Elevator Speech

A great elevator speech is a speech that is a short and impactful summary of what we want to say. The goal is to communicate the most important details of you or your business while capturing the attention of the person that you are talking to. In the world of public speaking, you may not always be given as much time as you were promised. In fact, the amount of time that you have to give your speech in may be quite short. This is going to be when you need to be able to turn a normal speech into a high-quality elevator speech.

When you are delivering a short elevator speech to your audience, you are going to want to go with your gut. This means that you want to convey positive energy in order to create a very good first impression. One great way to make sure that you’ll be ready to do this is by having a good meal before you start your speech. Don’t over do it, but make sure that you go into your speech fully loaded so that you’ll have the energy that you’ll need in order to connect with your audience.

The idea that you want to present to your audience has to be conveyed to them as an opportunity. You don’t want to create an advertisement or a call for help. Instead, you’ll want to capture your audience’s attention by framing your speech as an opportunity for them. Show them what the benefit of doing what you are asking them to do would be for them. One of the most important points when you are delivering an elevator speech is to make sure that you keep it simple. If you add too many details or include too much technical jargon, then you are going to lose your audience. Make sure that every word that comes out of your mouth will serve a purpose. Your goal is to make your audience want to find out more.

How To Deliver A Great Elevator Speech

When we are giving an elevator speech to an individual or to an audience, what is going to matter the most is the enthusiasm that you bring to your speech. The words that you choose to use are important; however, they are only one small part of the whole speech. If you crafted an elegant speech that used all of the right words and then delivered it with little or no joy, then it would be poorly received. However, if you can work enthusiasm into your speech then you’ll be able to guarantee that your words will remain in your audience’s mind. You need to view your elevator speech as your chance to show everyone that you are talking to how passionately you care about what you are talking about. When you are practicing your speech make sure that you incorporate both conviction and excitement.

The message that you convey in your elevator speech has to be crystal clear. What this means for you is that you need to take the time to remove any buzzwords from what you say. The language that we use every day has become clogged with overused words that really have no meaning. When you are creating your elevator speech you need to get rid of those words that don’t mean anything and make your speech stand apart from what everyone is already hearing by instead highlighting what makes you and what you are talking about unique. When you are preparing your speech, get someone to read it to you in order to make sure that it all flows naturally. What you are going to want to do is to listen to see if you can detect any phrases or words that sound too formal or too trite.

What All Of This Means For You

As speakers the one thing that we don’t control about our speeches is how much time we are going to be given to deliver them. There will be times when the time that you had been promised is chopped down to only mere minutes. When this happens, you need to have an elevator speech version of your speech ready to give in order share the benefits of public speaking with your audience. The elevator speech version has to contain the key points but be delivered in the minimum amount of time.

When we are creating the elevator speech version of one of our speeches, we need to plan to speak from the gut. This means that we need to be able to deliver it with a great deal of positive energy. We also need to position the ideas that are in our speech as an opportunity for our audience. Show them how working with you could be beneficial to them. You need to keep any elevator speech simple – cut out any technical jargon or too many details. When you deliver the speech you need to make sure that you do it with enthusiasm so that you are able to engage your audience. The speech that you deliver has to have any buzzwords or meaningless phrases removed from it so that your message will be crystal clear.

No, when you show up to give a 30 minute or longer speech you really don’t want to discover that your time has been slashed. However, things like this do happen and as speakers we need to be ready for them when they do. Having taken the time to prepare an elevator speech will prepare you to deliver your message in the limited amount of time that you end up being provided with. Come prepared with an elevator speech and make your next speech a success no matter how much time you have to work with!

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Public Speaking Skills™

Question For You: Do you think that your elevator speech has to contain all of your main points or should you only include the most important one?

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Note: What we talked about are advanced speaking skills. If you are just starting out I highly recommend joining Toastmasters in order to get the benefits of public speaking. Look for a Toastmasters club to join in your home town by visiting the web site Toastmasters is dedicated to helping their members to understand the importance of public speaking by developing listening skills and getting presentation tips. Toastmasters is how I got started speaking and it can help you also!

What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

So why do we go to the effort of giving speeches? I think that it’s pretty safe to say that the reason that we do this is because we want to use the importance of public speaking be remembered. We want the words that we shared with our audience to remain in their heads long after our speech is over and done with. This presents us with quite a problem. All of us engage in lots of different conversations every day and by the end of the day if you asked us to remember any of them we would be hard pressed to remember them. What we need to do as speakers is to find a way to add more flair to our next speech.