• Professional Headshots Palo Alto

Tips To The Best Elevator Pitch

The old saying goes, “you only have one chance to make a first impression.” The first few moments of meeting someone new is priceless…especially in your career. Whether you are looking for a new job, seeking investors, interested in a board position, or meeting someone new, preparing and knowing exactly what you will say is key to a positive outcome. You can start with a well-prepared elevator speech, also called an elevator statement or elevator pitch.


What is an Elevator Speech? An elevator speech is a quick statement or description of an idea, product, or company that should be short enough to finish during an elevator ride. The goal of an elevator pitch is to help someone understand what you are trying to say in a short period of time.


Take a look at 5 tips for preparing a great elevator speech.


1. Keep It Short: This is the key to a compelling, effective elevator speech. Your speech should be 30 seconds or less. That’s it! If it is anything longer, you will probably lose your listeners' attention.


2. Use A Conversational Tone: When writing your elevator speech, use a conversational tone. This shows your personality and allows the listener to feel part of the conversation. Avoid large vocabulary words or industry jargon that will make you look stuffy and arrogant.


3. Practice Makes Perfect: Practice your elevator speech in front of a mirror multiple times. Go one step further and take a video of yourself to view later. This will allow you to see your facial expressions, body language, and eye contact. Then, ask a friend or family member to listen to your pitch and ask them for their constructive feedback. Then make adjustments and practice your speech even more.


4. Sell Yourself With The Ask: Your elevator speech is your opportunity to make you shine! Include your unique selling proposition, or what makes you stand out in the crowd! Express what you can bring to the table and always ask for a follow-up call, meeting, or simply their contact information for future communication.


5. Ask Them Questions: It's always a good idea to incorporate a few questions into your elevator speech. This is effective at the end of your speech, while you are exchanging contact information. People like to share their experiences and asking them demonstrates your empathy and personality.