Pitch Your Services the Right Way
August 16, 2019
You’re a consultant. You meet someone who might be a prospective client. What do you do? You can certainly go into a long-winded explanation of the services you provide, your background and experience, and most likely lose the interest of the prospective client very quickly. You did all the talking, little listening, and have no idea what the prospect might need in the way of the services you provide.
Pitching The Right Way
On the other hand, you can pitch your services the right way with a concise, carefully planned, and well-practiced description of your business commonly referred to as an “elevator pitch.” Obviously, unless you’re in a stuck elevator or going from the first floor to the one-hundredth floor with intermittent stops in between, you will have little time to pitch your services to a prospective client who might be on the elevator with you.
So, what do you do? As a consultant, you must be prepared for any opportunity to pitch your services in a couple of sentences that will quickly grab the interest of the person you are talking to. It should be short and show your passion and enthusiasm for small business and SME consulting. Typically, you want the pitch to end by asking for an appointment or referral.
The following five tips will help you develop a strong, successful “elevator” pitch to attract prospective clients wherever you might meet them (and not necessarily in an elevator):
1. Practice, Practice, Practice: To develop a strong pitch, write it down and practice it again and again, so you can stay on point while keeping it brief. Revise and practice it again. Even record it on video so you can observe how you look, and then continuously improve it each time you practice. By striving for perfection, your professionalism will show through.
2. Eye Contact and Body Language: You might think this tip is not necessary, but it is. Make eye contact with the person you’re talking to and use positive body language that radiates confidence. This will demonstrate that you are relaxed, well-prepared, and full of self-assurance.
3. Start Your Pitch/Keep It Short: The idea with an elevator pitch is to attract interest rather than immediately acquire a new client; therefore, the pitch must be brief. Open it with a short introduction about yourself. Immediately establish who you are and what you do. It has to be concise and to the point. You cannot overwhelm your listener with too much information. Your goal is to provide a high-level overview of your services that will quickly grab interest and allow you to reach the next phase.
4. Highlight Important Information: Since an elevator pitch is short, be certain to highlight important and relevant information that shows why a small business or SME owner should be interested in your consulting services. You might want to stress your education, certification, experience, an outstanding business accomplishment, or your uniqueness compared to other business consultants. Remember, however, it must be short and concise...hitting the bulls eye.
5. Request a Follow-up Meeting: The whole point of an elevator pitch is to progress to the next phase with a prospective client. Ask for a follow-up meeting. This is not the time to be bashful. You’re a professional with a valuable service to provide.
Make the Pitch Count!
By following the above five tips, you’ll be ready for a chance encounter with any potential client – in an elevator or anywhere else. You never know where you’ll find your next great client!