The Elevator Pitch

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					     The Elevator Pitch

Modified from: 2006 Kirstie Chadwick
               Director
    What is an Elevator Pitch Anyway?
A short, simple description of your company or business
idea that your grandmother could understand by the time
you ride up three floors in a typical elevator.
                 Very Important Point

• You are NOT pitching a great idea, team or product
  (especially in an elevator!!)

• Remember, an elevator pitch is not a sales pitch

• You ARE pitching what your business will do for
  investors and for customers

• SO, pitch how your business will solve a tangible
  problem that exists TODAY!!
                               Example

• WRONG:
  – We are the smartest telecom guys in the world and we are
    gonna install high bandwidth wireless telecom
    infrastructure in really tall downtown buildings in big cities
    all over the world


• BETTER:
  – We enable you to use your cell phone anywhere inside
    every building in all major U.S. metropolitan areas
             Elevator Pitch “Must Haves”
 Hook: statement/question that immediately piques
  interest of recipient

 Passion: if you are not excited about your business, no
  one else will be either

 Request: Ask recipient for permission to call, a referral
  to others, or feedback

 Short: assume you have less than a minute, and
  sometimes only time for a few sentences
                  Elements of the Pitch

1.   The Hook: pain point or heart grabber
2.   Brief description of product/service
3.   Brief market description
4.   Brief description of competition
5.   How you are different from other solutions
6.   How you will make money
                              The Hook
• The hook should simply ID the pain you solve
   –   We make Napster legal
   –   Have you ever had your cell phone fail inside a building?
   –   Imagine a rubber coating that conducts electricity….
   –   We will change the way people invest their money


• Tag lines can be used as a form of a hook
   – GE brings good things to light
   – NY Times – “All the news that is fit to print”
   – UCF Venture Lab – “Where education is a venture”
                   The Product Pitch

• KISS – Keep It Simple, Stupid
• Kill the geek speak (e.g., limit technical
  talk)
• Focus on customer benefits, not technical
  benefits
• Tell a story that paints a personal picture
  for your audience
                       The KISS of the Devil
                             Too Much Information

• WRONG:
 Our technology is the first integrated and automatic book scanner that will scan and
 digitize bound documents at a speed of 1,200 PPM at a fraction of the cost of existing
 solutions based on a disruptive digital imaging technology initially developed at Bell
 Labs and protected by 12 patents.


• BETTER:
 We capture the future of knowledge by seamlessly digitizing physical libraries at a
 very low cost.
      Geek Speak Is Boring…


• WRONG:
 We provide non-penetrable intrusion detection for digital
 voice, fax and wireless communication devices with our 2048-
 bit Hellman encryption algorithm that is combined with the
 latest 168-bit Hellman DES.


• BETTER:
 We allow you to communicate safely on a broad range of
 digital devices.
        Customer Benefits, Not Technical Benefits

     Technical Benefits               Business Benefits
•   Seamless integration        •   Increase your revenues
•   Scalable, adaptable         •   Increase your efficiency
•   Secure networking           •   Reduces your risk
•   Improves network            •   Cut your costs by 30%
    performance



     SO WHAT???
             The Market Pitch – Tie to a Burning Need!!
• ID the problem or need you solve in 1-2 sentences
    – We allow any cell phone to work anywhere inside buildings that utilize our
      wireless network solution.
• Reference a brand-name customer that is using your product (or that
  has expressed interest)
    – The FAA has determined that we are the only security system that is able
      to rapidly move people through security check points while exceeding their
      security needs
• Quantify your market size with numbers that are from a trusted 3rd
  party source
    – According to the American Hospital Association, there are 4,000 hospitals
      in the U.S. that need the ability to visualize MRI images in 3D
     Know Thy Competition & Acknowledge It




Microsoft




                                       You
                 Neutralize Your Competition


• Pitch 1-2 Unique Differentiators that paint a
  picture
   – We use the same insulin compound provided in
     Merck’s drugs, but we allow children to take an oral
     dose instead of a shot

   – There are many flavors of PDA keyboards, but ours is
     the only one that folds into the PDA device when it is
     not in use

   – While there are many wireless router boxes on the
     market, ours is able to send signals through cement
     and steel walls
                  So, How Will You Make Money?
          (Optional – depends on time and uniqueness of business)


• Simple description of your business model
• Recurring revenue models are ideal
   – We will install the wireless network in a building at no
     charge, and then charge a usage fee for all calls that
     we carry

   – We provide free access to our medical information
     website for consumers, and charge advertisers for each
     exposure

   – Our portable fuel cells will be installed in laptops, and
     we will receive a royalty from Dell for each installation
                         Why Invest in You?
           (Optional – depends on time and uniqueness of business)
• Fact – investors invest in people, not products
   – Our founders have over 20 years of combined
     experience in the telecom industry

   – Our board includes two top executives in the
     restaurant franchise industry

   – Our technical staff has a combined portfolio of over
     30 medical device patents

   – We just recruited John Smith to run our sales team.
     You may recall that John took Google from $3 million
     to $100 million in sales in two years.
           Will You Help Me?


• Always end with a request:
   – Could I follow up with you at a more convenient time to
     present our company in more depth?

   – Given your background, I would greatly appreciate your
     feedback. What do you think of our business model?

   – I know you have a lot of contacts in the energy utility
     business. Who would you recommend for us to ask to join
     our board?

   – Could I have your card? I would like my CTO to follow up
     with you on your technical questions.
                Top 3 Elevator Pitch Mistakes
1.   Focus on selling a cool product/idea instead of on
     the viability of the business

2.   Take too long to get to the pain/problem that you are
     solving

3.   Don’t engage the recipient via questions that
     request them to engage with you
                  Elevator Pitch: An Example
– Have you ever had your cell phone fail inside a building?
– We provide a communications network that enables any cell phone to
  work anywhere inside all types buildings, while ensuring your
  communications are secure.
– The FCC has determined that over 60% of the 5 million commercial
  buildings in the U.S. inhibit wireless or cell phone communications from
  within. The percentage is even higher in international markets
– While there are many vendors that provide internal wireless networks,
  we are the only vendor that enables communications to penetrate steel
  and other high density construction materials, which significantly
  reduces the cost of installation
– We will install the wireless network in a building at no charge, and then
  charge a usage fee for all calls that we carry on our networks
– Our founders have over 25 years of design experience in
  communications systems, and Bob Marriott has recently agreed to join
  our Board of Directors.
– It is my understanding that you invest in young communications
  companies. Can I follow up with you next week to discuss our business
  in depth?
Questions?

				
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posted:8/12/2011
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