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Thursday, January 19, 2012

How to create a great elevator pitch?

- What we are doing? -
- Why its unique, interesting or valuable?
- Why you should care...

I really wish i had recorded my early elevator pitches for BuzzNumbers. As i indulge in recollection of past events, my first investor pitch took 10 minutes to complete. Rushing forward to today, i've pitched thousands of times over to associates, clients, investors etc. It now feels so natural to give an elevator pitch in less than 60 seconds that i had kind of forgotten that i even had to try to hone the perfect "elevator pitch".

I've recently been working with StartMate and internal teams at BuzzNumbers for new products we are bringing to market this year and the concept of elevator pitch has come up a few times this week and spurred me to think about this again.

As a serial entrepreneur and angel investor who has seen thousands of pitches, i have formed an opinion on what makes a good pitch that works for me on both sides of the table and i wanted to share my experience.

The key things i think you need to cover in your pitch is

- What problem do you solve?
- What traction/milestones you have that achieved to prove you are solving this problem
- What you want from the person you are speaking to? (Your "ask")

So with renewed focus, i though perhaps to deliver my Elevator pitch as see it today for BuzzNumbers...

Version 1
BuzzNumbers helps businesses track, measure and understand what people are saying online and on social media about their company, people, products and competitors. 
Our world-class social media analytics platform has best in breed and patent pending realtime monitoring of News, Blogs, Forums, Social Media sites like Twitter and Facebook as well as Video, Classifieds like Craigslist and Ebay and even BitTorrent networks. 
Our company was founded in 2009 and is now trusted and used daily by over 150 global fortune 500 companies including Microsoft, AMP, BHP, Astra-Zeneca, EarthHour and multiple Government Agencies and our company is growing exponentially at over XX% per month. 
It would be great to get your contact details if that is ok. Do you have a business card so i can send you some information to see if this is of interest?
After reflecting on this <1min pitch, which i use frequently, i realised it is objectively perhaps longer than what is necessary to cement interest and get the business card.

So i cut it down to something shorter

Version 2
BuzzNumbers helps companies track what people are saying about them online. 
Our customers use this information to get market research and consumer insights in near real-time, something that was never possible before our patent pending Software as a Service was created. 
We founded the company in 2009, and have since grown exponentially and acquired more than 150 enterprise customers including Microsoft, AMP, BHP, Astra-Zeneca and many many more across all industry sectors. 
I'd love to tell you more - do you have a business card i can send you some information about our company?
While now under 35 seconds, surely i could do better!
In thinking how i could to get this down, i recalled giving a pitch when i bumped into an old colleague while crossing a pedestrian crossing in the street who asked "what are you doing now?". My crosswalk pitch?

Version 3
I'm at BuzzNumbers. We help companies understand the voice of the consumer on the web. We are growing crazy fast in both enterprise customers and revenue. 
It would be great if you could recommend any potential customers, partners or investors that you think would be interested? Do you have a business card i could send a link to our web demo?
Ok, so im now happy with this badass 15 seconds pitch. This pitch is a taster of what we do and why it is cool, and an "ask" to get their contact details without being too pushy.

So what are your thoughts?

What is your elevator pitch?

What do you do? Why is it unique? Why do i care?

Leave a comment!

Posted by Nick HaC @ 12:08 AM


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