How to Perfect Your Pitch: A Guide to Elevator Pitches

This week we are tackling elevator pitches. These are important because they give you the opportunity to make other people aware of your past experience, your current situation, and your future goals in a short, to-the-point way.

We mentioned elevator pitches briefly in our Netowrking 101 blog post, but today we are dedicating a whole blog to it.

An elevator pitch is brief statements (I’m talking 30-60 seconds which according to indeed, is around 75 words) that showcases previous employment experiences as well as what you currently do or are looking for.

Elevator pitches are important because they give you the opportunity to make other people aware of your past experience, your current situation, and your future goals. Elevator Pitches are great because you can use them in so many different scenarios and situations. You can use them in person, over the phone or in an email. You can use them when meeting new people, searching for a job, or in an interview. The list goes on. The key here is that these are important statements to have ready because you never know when you will need one.

Here is a four-point structure to help form your elevator pitch.

  1. Greeting – This is where you say hello and let people know your name. Elevator pitches should be conversational so you might acknowledge the other people you are talking to like ‘Hello! My name is Erica and I am excited to be here’ or ‘Hello! It’s great to meet you. My name is Jeremy.’
  2. Background – This is where you will talk about your experience and skills you have. Consider using what you have listed on your resume as a guide through this section, as it highlights your most relevant skills, work and education experience.
  3. Goals – This is where you can talk about what you hope to accomplish next. If you are using your pitch for a job interview, you can express interest by using your expertise with the company. If you are meeting new people, you can express your desire to learn from others.
  4. The Ask – This is where you have some sort of call to action. It will depend on what you are using the elevator pitch for. If it is to meet people, you can ask to exchange information. If it is at a job fair, you can use it as a way to ask for the opportunity to further discuss the position.

Example : “Hello, It is nice to meet you. My name is Morgan Smith. I worked at OrganizationABC for 4 years and I have a background in customer service and sales. At my previous job at CompanyZ, I managed a small team on the sales floor where I was able to increase sales by 5%. I am seeking opportunities where I can use my skills as well as develop new ones and am excited for the opportunity to talk to you about my potential with your company.”

Tips to Help You Perfect Your Pitch

  • Elevator Pitches don’t feel very natural at first. It is important to practice them so you can use them with confidence. You don’t have to have them perfectly memorized; you just want to be able to know it well enough so it flows easily.
  • Try practicing your pitch on someone like a friend or relative. This will help you gage how fast your speed is or how well the pitch sounds out loud.
  • You can have pitches even if you do not have much experience. Think about what experience you do have whether it is from a job, training or education, volunteer work, or what you have interest in.
  • Create different pitches for different scenarios. You want to cater the pitch to your audience. A job interview elevator pitch will look different than one for meeting new people.