Small Business: The Elevator Pitch

Mike Grill // September 12, 2017

You have more than likely heard that an elevator pitch is essential to forging partnerships and sales. Turns out, it is also really helpful to describe your business to your friends and family. More importantly, an elevator pitch helps you figure out your small business’s positioning and that allows you to market effectively.


The Elevator Pitch and Positioning

It can be pretty tough to distill what you do into a 15 second sentence or two, but by figuring out how to talk about your company in such a compact way you can communicate with pretty much anyone. A typical elevator pitch goes like this:

“[Your Business] is a [type of company] that helps [type of customers] by [service you provide]. The way we [your unique selling point] helps our clients achieve [a specific way that you benefit clients].”

For example – using a landscape company:

“Mike’s Landscaping helps maintain some of the nicest yards in the city with our professional landscaping services. Our attention to detail helps our clients’ yards look picture perfect year round.”


The statement above helps position Mike’s Landscaping:

  • The company works with high end clients (some of the nicest yards)
  • It communicates and reiterates what exactly Mike’s Landscaping does – not just lawn mowing and weeding, but a full spectrum landscaping services
  • They are a detail oriented company, which reinforces their higher paying clientele and means that they aren’t just high-school kids knocking on doors with a lawn mower in tow
  • It paints a picture of an award winning or magazine worthy house and yard, which is desireable to a certain segment of the population that Mike’s Landscaping caters to


The Elevator Pitch for Referrals

Moving forward from setting up your elevator pitch, you and your small business are now enabled in a way that you weren’t before. Imagine talking to someone about Mike’s Landscaping like this:

“We work for lots of different folks who need landscaping, and not just lawn mowing or weeding, but we also work to maintain their gardens and we can put in retaining walls and we can put in pools, too. Most of our clients are on almost an acre of land, and some of them are in gated communities, we even do landscaping for a couple of the professional athletes.”

While this gets into specifics of work you do and who your clients are, how is someone supposed to echo what you do for those all powerful word of mouth referrals?

“They landscape, but it seems like they only work with rich people.”


The elevator pitch not only leaves enough ambiguity to give you some flexibility and leeway, but it invites questions and more conversation. You can deliver your elevator pitch, hand someone a business card and walk away and they will be able to effectively communicate who you are and what you do to someone that they might hand your business card to.

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