Elevator Pitches – What They Are and Why You Need One:
Elevator pitches are basically a 15- to 30-second soundbite that explains who you are, what you do and a little bit about your business. The idea is that you can deliver it to someone in the amount of time it will take an elevator to get you both where you’re going.
Elevator pitches for manufactured housing are different than sales pitches. It is about building excitement, rapport, or understanding.
You undoubtedly know what it is that you do. And you might not be networking with people in elevators. So why would you need elevator pitches for manufactured housing industry?
Three Reasons for Elevator Pitches for Manufactured Housing
The First Reason: The Chance Encounter
Having a short, simple, easy to understand description of who you are and what you do can come in handy in a number of situations. You never know when you’ll meet someone in your town whose company would be a great partner for your business. Or when you might run into a government official or need to speak at a town meeting.
Unfortunately, the manufactured housing industry is both frequently misunderstood and has a lot of industry-specific jargon. When you have an elevator pitch in your back pocket that people can easily understand, you easily get the conversation rolling.
The Second Reason: Know Thyself
You probably do know your job – too well. Ever talk to someone who is passionate about something dear to them? Ever find yourself lost in the conversation?
I travel all across the country speaking to manufactured housing professionals from all aspects of our industry. If there is one thing I can tell you – our industry is passionate about what we do. We love it. In fact, people in our industry stay in manufactured housing careers for decades, their families become second and third generations in the business. The idea of an elevator pitch is forcing you to take the simplest, brightest, most interesting ideas and put them together in a quick sound bite. Can you describe what you do to someone and why it is important in 30 seconds? Give it a try!
The Third Reason: Consistency is Key
Do you have staff? If so, it is important for everyone to have a consistent message. An elevator pitch for manufactured housing staff that everyone understands, means they have a message they can give on short notice, without preparation. Everyone in your office is on the same page and can tell the same story about your business. Also, because it is short, an elevator speech is easy to learn and doesn’t come off as too scripted. The listener easily gets a feel for your business.
Crafting Elevator Pitches for Manufactured Housing
Solve a Problem
Manufactured homes solve a problem for many people. And this can be a great place to start. Whether it is affordable housing, safe family neighborhoods, active retirement communities, or supplies for manufactured homes, you provide an important service. Start there.
Use an Analogy
One of the best ways to promote understanding is to use an analogy. Use something simple that most people understand.
Be Willing to Change Your Pitch
You might not get your pitch perfect the first time. Try it out, practice it. See how your audience responds. Do they “get you?” Be willing to hone your elevator pitch until you have it just the way you want it. It may take a few tries. Be flexible.
For more tips, check out this article on the The Muse: Perfect Pitch: How to Nail Your Elevator Speech. The article is designed for job seekers, but the advice is solid for anyone looking to give a great quick pitch.
Also, another great article here on the Insider blog is Ken Corbin’s Greeting Your Customer. It has additional information about how to make a great first impression.