If you asked 10 different employees to describe your organization – would you get 10 different responses? If so, it may be time to create or refresh your company’s elevator pitch – a simple 30-60 second description of what your organization does, why, for whom and to what end.
This practical communications tool helps employees consistently and clearly speak (and write) about your organization, in a variety of situations, including:
- Business meetings with clients and prospects
- Trade shows and conferences
- Media interviews
- Networking events
- LinkedIn profiles and other social channels
- Community events, as well as among family, friends and neighbors
An elevator pitch for your organization shouldn’t sound robotic. It can be customized based on the person and situation, but it should have common elements that every employee can remember and articulate. (You can also create a personal elevator pitch, focusing on what you do and how it benefits others – see tips and examples in this post).
Key Questions to Get Started
- What does your organization do?
- What are the benefits and impact of what you do; or what problems do you solve; or what opportunities do you address and with what effect?
- How do you do it?
- Who does it? Where? For whom?
- What makes your organization unique?
- Is there an opportunity for a call to action or next step?
The elevator pitch should be shared and readily accessible to your employees, with an explanation of how, why and where to use. As a side note, your organization may want to consider brand positioning research with clients and prospects. It can help define and deliver clear, differentiating messages, including those for an elevator pitch. Research will ensure you’re focusing on your customers’ needs and reasons they should (and do) rely on your organization.
A Few Examples
Some organizations use “boiler plates” as an offshoot or starting point for an elevator pitch. You can do a Google search to find examples.
This is a take on our firm’s elevator pitch:
Linhart Public Relations is a national communications firm based in Colorado. We partner with forward-thinking organizations to achieve their business objectives through the power of strategic communications. Our team of communications experts specializes in serving industries such as better-for-you food and beverage, multi-unit restaurants, energy and utilities, health and wellness, and financial and professional services. Founded 20 years ago, we are proud to be regularly recognized by our peers for our client results, business strength and great workplace. Can we discuss how we might be able to solve challenges or identify opportunities to help your organization?
Here are recent boiler plates from two companies. You can see how these might be customized for an elevator pitch:
• Since its founding in 2004, KIND has been on a mission to make the world a little kinder one snack and act at a time. All award-winning KIND snacks are made from delicious, wholesome ingredients and are gluten free and non GMO. KIND currently offers six different snack lines … Through its social mission – known as the KIND Movement – KIND, together with its community, is committed to inspiring kindness through acts big and small. It fulfills this commitment through programming like “kind causes,” which helps people bring their socially-impactful ideas to life with monthly grants.
• Apple revolutionized personal technology with the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984. Today, Apple leads the world in innovation with iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Apple TV. Apple’s four software platforms — iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS — provide seamless experiences across all Apple devices and empower people with breakthrough services including the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay and iCloud. Apple’s more than 100,000 employees are dedicated to making the best products on earth, and to leaving the world better than we found it.