When you are out at a networking event or meeting new people how do you answer the question: “What do you do?” If you are like most people you begin to dust off your elevator pitch in an attempt to dazzle and wow the questioner. Unfortunately your efforts to impress people with your “standard” elevator pitch is often the very reason why you do not connect. Eric Tsai’s “Creating the unforgettable elevator pitch” is a fantastic strategy that will improve your ability to connect and create business relationships.
Are you a Macro or Micro?
Most people when presenting their case for others to connect with them regurgitate two types of answers to the question: “What do you do?”
Micro: a micro pitch describes a person’s daily tasks, the mechanics of their job or business
Macro: a macro pitch describes the industry a person works within
Using either the Micro or Macro pitch is a mistake because, in most cases, neither pitch provides solutions to the problem(s) the person asking you what you do really wants to hear.
How can you help people?
The way to connect with people when they ask the question “What do you do?” is to “focus in on how you help people- specifically, the problem(s) that you solve.” As Tasai states “The ugly truth is nobody really cares about what you do; it’s about how you do it.”
If you and your business provide solutions to the problems your targeted prospect is experiencing in their business, you should use your pitch to describe those solution(s). By being succinct and direct with your answer, you will begin to connect and create a curiosity in your prospective networking partner.
Hard sales tactics adopted and utilized by most people in their strategies to network online and in the real world fall decidedly flat in an effort to create business relationships that lead to referral business. The 30 second elevator pitch, the blatant sales pitch, the product and services feature-benefit dump, a lack of listening skills, and the “work the room” mentality are giving way to a new much more effective strategy: giving value. Below is an example of the “work the room” business card treasure hunt modeled after a bad speed dating session seen on “Sex and the City.”
Before you can give away something that others value, give it often, give it continuously, and give it without asking for anything in return, you must first understand how to identify what you have to offer. The following should help you get started in identifying your value to others:
5 Tips To Finding Your Value “Give”
1. Make a List of Your Accomplishments: don’t be shy in this exercise. Give a full list with details
2. Make a List of Your Contacts of Influence: prioritize this list by who you know best and who KNOWs you
3. List Your Skill Sets: again do not be shy. Provide everything that is important to building your career
4. From the First Three Lists: analyze and choose what you believe to be the most valuable things you can give to your potential networking partners
5. Create a Plan on How To Deliver: will you utilize a blog or begin a public speaking platform to help benefit your potential networking partners? Identify all of the channels in which you can deliver your value