In a previous post, I talked about the value of creating an elevator speech that you can have ready to use when someone asks you about what you do. One of our readers asked for tips on writing one, and here are some suggestions to help you prepare one that will make potential clients want to learn more about you and what you can do for them:
1. Keep it short and to the point.
Ideally, your elevator speech should be deliverable in 15-30 seconds. Any more time than that, and the person you are talking to will lose interest in what you are saying.
2. Don’t make the speech about you.
Most people would rather talk about themselves than listen to someone else talk about themselves. To write a good elevator speech, take the focus off you, and keep it on the person listening to it.
3. Talk about a problem your niche market has and explain how you solve it.
The freelance writer is a problem solver for his or her clients. Figure out how your clients benefit from your services and use this information as a basis for your speech.
4. Practice makes perfect.
Once you have prepared your elevator speech, practice it. You can do this in front of a mirror if you think that will help. Do this often enough that it feels natural, but avoid making it sound like you are working from a script. You don’t want to come off like a phony.
5. Adapt your elevator speech for different situations.
You can have more than one version of an elevator speech prepared. Different situations call for different speeches. You might want to focus on a different part of your business if you were at a conference for small business owners than if you were talking to someone in a social situation.
Here’s one last tip: After you have made your elevator speech, be ready to give the person your business card and invite them to contact you to learn more. An elevator speech is not about making a sales pitch. Its purpose is to get the person you are talking with to want to learn more about you and the services you offer