We live in a fast-paced world. We stand in line and tap our feet because the five minutes we are wasting in that line could be used to work on an assignment, cook dinner, or, better yet, work on that assignment while we cook dinner. Nobody wants to take the time out of his/her busy schedule to listen to someone ramble on about a potential investment. What smart businesspeople have figured out is that you have to catch the busy, no-time-to-listen people during their seconds of free time. This interaction is a casual exchange called the elevator pitch.

What is an elevator pitch?

An elevator pitch is a brief and simple conversation about you and/or your company that is the length of an elevator ride.

Note: You do not have to be in an elevator to perform an elevator pitch.

When to use:

  • To sell products and services
  • To introduce an organization
  • To gain clients or customers
  • To sell an idea
  • To network 

Questions to be answered:

  • What are you selling?
  • Why are you selling it?
  • Why is your product better than the competition’s?
  • Why should they care?
  • What can you do for him/her that nobody else can?
  • What are the benefits? 


  • The time range is 20-60 seconds, but try not to exceed 60 seconds. The audience will feel as if this once casual situation is now a trap and a ploy if the pitch drags on too long.
  • Have a hook.
  • Have an objective. (What you are talking about.)
  • Have an intended audience. (To whom you are talking.)
  • Describe what your objective is to your intended audience.
  • Always end with a call to action.
  • Form your pitch around this central question: “What do you want your audience to remember most about you?”
  • Keep a business card with you to give out. This will help him/her remember you and your message.


  • Establish credibility. Present a brief resume of your success.
  • Be enthusiastic. If you don’t get excited about what you are pitching, nobody else will.
  • Vary your approach for different situations and according to what your pitch is about.
  • Relax and be yourself. Don’t come across as stiff and as if you are trying to sell them something.
  • These opportunities will not be planned like an interview. Be prepared to network at all times.
  • Make the audience remember you and your message. 

Do not:

  • Overwhelm or corner the intended audience.
  • Pressure the audience.
  • Talk too fast.
  • Provide too much information. The audience cannot retain a lot of information in the limited amount of time you have.

Remember, this pitch gets its name from it being no longer than a short elevator ride. Use your time wisely.

Creative Spot is a full-service marketing and advertising agency in Columbus, Ohio. If you would like to learn more about how we can help your organization with strategic marketing, please contact us.