Planning, Startups, Stories


Tim Berry on business planning, starting and growing your business, and having a life in the meantime.

Elevator Speech Part 3: What You Offer

So you’re rounding the corner now on the elevator speech, which I say is something all business owners should be able to do. You’ve done the market story, which was part 1, and the why you, part 2. You’re about 30 seconds or so into your one minute talk. And I hope you agree that this isn’t just a formal one-minute talk as part of a grad-level business plan competition. This is something you want to do as part of your business ownership. This is about what you say whenever somebody asks you about your business.

What do you offer

Elevator Speech What You Offer

So now, as the third of four parts, explain what that person you’re selling to gets. Or the organization. You’ve personalized the need or want, identified your unique qualities to solve the problem, and now you have to put the need or want in concrete terms that anybody can see. This is where you highlight the benefits to your customer. For example:

  • So our clients have the peace of mind of knowing that their social media persona are well management, strategic, and professional, without having to hire a full-time employee. They know they will look good when somebody searches for them.
  • Our customers get help with the part of the task that can be automated, without having to pretend that it doesn’t take human thought, and some effort to think it through an organize. They get a unique plan without having to do all the drudge work.
  • The customers get the benefit of a professional email system┬áthat allows sharing the email task among several people, managing common responses, assigning responsibilities, and tracking responses and response time.
  • So people love the whole dining experience. It’s great food, in a great environment, served well, and at the same time healthy, organic, and local.

Focus on benefits

In each example here, following on the ones in my previous two posts, we should be able to see clearly how this meets the need or solves the problem. Forget features as much as possible, and illustrate benefits. You’ve already described the person with the situation, and built up your being able to solve it, so now it’s just about the solution. Stay focused and concentrated. People will get one or at the most two unique attributes of your business offering. Don’t confuse them with more.