You are at a networking event, on vacation or in an elevator when you strike up a conversation with a stranger. You are then asked the inevitable question: “So, what do you do?” You try to think of the perfect thing to say. This is your moment to shine!
Most advisers panic when put in this position simply because they haven’t taken the time to create a unique elevator speech. To create a terrific elevator speech, you must first understand the formula. I’ve researched and listened to many elevator speeches and feel that they should all do the following:
- Inform the listener of who you are and what your credentials are.
- State your unique proposition statement.
- Create curiosity, prompting the listener to ask questions.
- Give you the opportunity to ask additional questions and create a connection.
Although all four steps are important, perhaps the most important is your proposition statement.
Your name and credentials are like the appetizer to the main course, setting the stage for the most important information—what makes you unique. If done properly, your unique proposition statement creates the curiosity needed to further the conversation. If done improperly, it simply receives an acknowledgement statement such as, “Oh, I see.” Your question back to them should allow the listener to get engaged in the conversation and make a better connection by telling how they can relate.
Following is a series of unique proposition statements to help you better understand the process and formulate your own elevator speech.
Selling the Specifics
Being specific about what you do can for your target market can show credibility and create curiosity.
“I have a team that specializes in building and preserving wealth for doctors by using the recent Supreme Court ruling.”
Painting the Perfect Picture
Financial advisers can use stories, analogies and metaphors to paint the perfect picture for the listener, pulling them into the conversation. It’s a powerful technique when done properly:
“You know how a great symphony needs a conductor to organize the musicians or it’s just a bunch of noise? Well, I’m kind of like a financial conductor who organizes, recommends and manages all of your financial investments.”
The Rhetorical Question
Using rhetorical questions in an elevator speech gets the listener to immediately think about what you are saying. It pulls them in to want to hear more.
“Do you think multi-millionaires or billionaires manage their own investments? Well, I do the exact same thing for people with $500,000 or more in assets and I can do that with the unique technology that I use.”
The Problem-solver Analogy
In this technique, the elevator speech is designed to solve a common problem in a way that uses an analogy or metaphor to help get your point across.
“I’m like mortar. I make sure a family’s wealth does not crumble between generations.”
Whatever unique proposition you use, remember to make it your own. It’s your stamp to show the world what makes you you.
If you need additional help, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org requesting the white paper “Creating a Great Elevator Speech” or schedule a complimentary group coaching session.
Daniel C. Finley
St. Paul, Minn.