Elevate Your Elevator Pitch

Imagine a chance meeting with your ideal suspect.  This is a person you really want a chance to sell to, but you simply have not been able to get their attention.  Your chance meeting will not allow much time and you must make the most of it.  Please take a minute, pull out some paper, and write down what you will say.

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In selling circles, the scenario that I just described is often called the elevator speech.  The idea of the elevator speech is to make an impact with a suspect even if you are only in the elevator together for a short ride.  At Griffin Hill, we call this speech the Case Open. Now that you have written your Case Open, answer the following questions.

1.  What was your objective?  What did you want to accomplish?

2.  How many words did it take?

3.  If you were the suspect, how would you respond to the introduction you just wrote?

4.  How confident are you that you would accomplish your objective?

5.  How frequently have you used this same approach?

For many people, including experienced sales professionals, writing a Case Open is a challenging assignment.  Some argue that it is much easier to actually engage the conversation than to write it.  While it may be easier, it is far less effective.  When you write your Case Open, you have the opportunity to clarify your objectives and choose your language in advance.  Research shows this is far more productive than acting in the instant.  Additionally, preparation does not diminish your ability to be spontaneous – it enhances it.  When the time for action comes, the time for preparation has passed and if you are not prepared, you are not likely to be as brilliant as you would like to be.

With SMARTcon in just a few days, now is the perfect time to refine your Case Open in order to make your networking more effective! Download the free PDF below for more tips of how to elevate your elevator pitch!

Get your free PDF HERE! 

3 Strategies to Alleviate the Stress of Networking

With SMARTcon, Griffin Hill’s premiere business conference, coming up on September 28th, there’s a lot of talk about networking. SMARTcon will have not only 6 amazing keynote speakers and a floor full of great vendors, but will be an awesome opportunity to network. Networking events and organizations continue to gain popularity in the age of explosive growth in high technology. John Naisbitt had it right when he encouraged high touch to match the atomic trend of high tech. The new technologies that enhance marketing efficacy are made even more powerful when paired with a high touch strategy.

The human soul hungers for kindred connection and every analytic mind quickly grasps the power and influence that results from a large web of relationships. On the other hand, social anxiety is also very real. The research tells us that social anxiety is the second most common form of anxiety disorder and the third most common mental disorder—just behind depression and alcohol dependence. Nearly 20 million Americans are afflicted with social anxiety disorder.

There is a conflict between our need for human contact and the real fear, uncertainty and doubt that accompany social anxiety. This conflict is most acute in the business and social trend toward networking events. I experienced an example of this conflict at a recent business luncheon.

As part of the event, there was a social hour and networking opportunity. As the keynote speaker, I felt an obligation to participate. I scanned the crowded room and immediately picked out a forlorn-looking employee of one of the event sponsors. I approached him and asked how his networking activities were going. His response confirmed my suspicions. He felt all alone in that crowded room. Everyone else was engaged in lively conversation but when he tried to join in he felt intrusive, rude, and out of touch with the conversational flow. He eventually withdrew.

That experience, repeated in some form at every event I attend, inspired this article. There are 3 strategies that can help everyone make networking events more fun, more effective, and pain free.

  1. Bring a friend or a small group of friends
    Among the advantages of bringing a friend or a small group of friends is the fact that you become emboldened. In the company of peers you become more confident, relaxed and socially active. Friends can introduce one another to individuals or small groups. An introduction creates a reasonable intrusion to an extant conversation. Additionally there is synergy among friends. With just a bit of planning and coordination, each person’s contacts become everyone’s new connections.
  2. Make the room small
    A room full of people can be intimidating. Especially when they are already engaged in fun interactions with each other. You make the room small by focusing on one individual or one small group with whom you have a connection. Even if the conversation is underway, touching someone’s arm, excusing the interruption and making the connection is effective. For example, while touching one or more people on the arm or shoulder you direct your comment to the person you recognize, “excuse me, I’m Joan Smith over at Edgidyne aren’t you with Techlegal? Let’s make sure to connect before the night is over”. You can then move on to a next person or small group or you can settle into the group you have interrupted by directing your next comment to the person that was speaking. “Again, sorry for the interruption, please, back to what you were saying.” Don’t just attach yourself to one person or group. When it is socially convenient, move on. Meaningfully connect with as many people as time permits.
  3. Arm yourself with a short introduction and conversation topics
    Fundamental to networking is comfortable social conversation. A good rule here is, contribute but don’t dominate. Your preparation of a short introduction, an ability to respond to questions with meaningful conversation about interests, family, and work, and your ability to talk about current events and topics of interest to the group add to your ability to contribute to the conversation. Asking good questions and listening to answers facilitates useful understanding that takes you deeper than superficial interaction.

Bring a friend or a small group. Make the room small. Arm yourself with a short introduction. Be prepared to expound on questions about family, interests and work. Prepare to talk about 3-5 current events or topics of interest to participants in the networking event. Ask good questions and listen to the answers. These strategies will make your networking fun, effective and pain free. Now go!

When you are prepared you will have no need to fear.

Learn more about SMARTcon here!

Griffin Hill Training Camp

Wednesday, August 12th
Utah Career College
898 North 1200 West Orem, Utah
8:30 A.M. Room 214

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