A good idea that nobody understands is worth nothing.

Do you share your business idea in a way that people understand?

Last Time in the ElevatorThe ability to clearly and concisely explain a business is important: in fund raising, in hiring and in selling to early customers.

An elevator pitch is a simple outline of the business that quickly communicates the key features of your business to others. It is called an elevator pitch because you should be able to deliver it in the time it takes for an elevator to go from ground floor to the executive office of the person you are pitching – between 30 seconds and one minute.

The 7 elements of a good entrepreneurial elevator pitch
A good entrepreneurial elevator pitch will contain these 7 elements:

  1. description of the problem you solve
  2. the individuals or groups that will benefit
  3. the specific product or service you will deliver
  4. how you differ from competitors and other substitutes
  5. how you will make money
  6. what resources you require (money, time, support, expertise)
  7. an outline of the value that will be created

Don’t just talk about your product
A good friend of mine, Nick, spent years at Apax Partners listening to entrepreneurs pitch their ideas.  He says “the pitch needs to cover how we are going to make money – not technology, not product, not idea, not market. How does it translate into making money? The worst presentations start with a product demo then stock company presentation.”

The audience is not an expert in your market or product.  She does not have the necessary experience or criteria to judge whether your product is a good product, only that your analysis of the market, the competition, the route to money seems sensible.

A business is much more than a good product or a good idea.  A business is the translation of the product into a sustainable stream of revenues that is more valuable than the resources used to create this stream of revenues.

Other resources on this blog:
You will be judged within seconds into one of 7 stereotypes
How to do sales
The need for confidence
12 tips for public speaking

What do you think?
Do you have examples of elevator pitches that you would be happy to share?  I would love to see some great examples.  I look forward to your ideas, questions and reflections.


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