Going Beyond The Elevator Pitch


If you’ve been in business any amount of time you’ve undoubtedly been exposed to what is euphemistically known as . . . the ‘Elevator Pitch’.


That’s your brief response to a stranger who asks, “What do you do?”

Ideally, your pitch or ‘Talking Logo’ is short, sweet and likely to cause a qualified person to then say something akin to, “Really?  THAT is what you do?  Fascinating! . . . Tell me more!”

In common practice, you follow a simple formula such as:

  1. Target Market . . . e.g. “I help _______________”
  2. Meaningful Outcome . . . e.g. “to stop having to . . .” or, “to be able to . . .”
  3. Resource . . . e.g. “By means of my . . .”

If the person doesn’t ‘bite’ on what you’ve said in the first two steps, they’re not qualified and you don’t ever have to share what you have to say in step 3 because, well . . . there’s no reason to do so, is there?

Sometimes, you’ll want to give a little longer explanation of what you do.  And that brings me to the real subject of this post.

Beyond The Basics

OK, now just for fun, I’d like to introduce you to Karrie Kohlhaas.  Karrie is the founder of Thoughtshot Consulting in Seattle, WA.

I had the pleasure of meeting her on a social network for businesspeople called Biznik.com (definitely check it out!).

Below is what Karrie has on her profile and boy does it address the question, “What do you do?”.  What I’d like you to notice though is just how powerful her words are . . . they are clear, concise and paint vivid images for anyone who hears them. See for yourself.  Picture Karrie standing at a business meeting and delivering the following message to ‘introduce’ herself to the room:

I blast through barriers with independent business owners, streamlining their growth so they can move faster and easier. I work with clients to create structures and systems that cause a shift from overwhelm to profit, from scrambling to strategy. The work is unorthodox and the results are dramatic. Clients who work with me consistently report their highest income levels to date.

My background, providing cutting-edge consulting to Fortune 500 companies, translates into keen insights for business development, strategy, organization, marketing, branding and growth.

If you have a business you want to grow or an idea for a business you want to start, I’d love to hear from you. I am not a cookie cutter consultant, nor a feel-good coach. I combine cultural anthropology, brain studies and business and my commitment is that my clients produce tangible results.

If you’d like to know more about Karrie, here’s her website:

WOW!  As you read the carefully chosen words and phrases Karrie uses, did you feel the rhythm she was weaving for you?  Were you intrigued?  Did her words fixate you?  Did they transform who she is in your mind?  Did you notice she speaks about the outcomes she produces / her clients want?  I bet the answer is YES!  And that’s good.

When you have an opportunity to share more than a brief elevator pitch, consider the lesson Karrie is giving you here . . . choose your words to paint strong, vivid images that will not only attract and qualify people for your business but make them feel excited about working with you, too.

2 replies
  1. Karrie Kohlhaas
    Karrie Kohlhaas says:

    Thanks for holding me up as an example, Bill. I do really believe in being boldly authentic in how entrepreneurs speak and write about their businesses. There is so much bland marketing, bland conversation, and elevator pitches, don’t even get me started! I kinda loathe them!

    That said, we do need to be able to put what we offer into language. There are ways to do that while putting people to sleep and sounding like everyone else in your field and there are ways of doing that so you BAM! stand out and really connect with the people who you want to resonate with what you offer.

    I am enjoying getting to know you, Bill. You have a great way of sharing your expertise with generosity. Thanks for the kudos and I look forward to future conversations with you! I hope your readers find this helpful.


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