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"Great trials seem to be necessary preparation for great duties."

-James Thomson

More Inspirational quotes

By Robert L. Cox

Successful individuals are first, last, and always salespeople. They are constantly selling themselves and their ideas to investors, management, co-workers, vendors, and even their families.

An opportunity to sell yourself and/or your ideas can come up on the subway, in the checkout line at the grocery store, after your yoga class - just about anywhere. To be ready to make a useful connection at any time, it's a good idea to be prepared with a short (one minute is ideal) self-promotional speech.

Known as an "elevator pitch" (because you can deliver it in the time it takes for a short elevator ride), it is meant to engage the interest of a potential contact/prospect.

Aside from introducing yourself and what you do, the elevator pitch has three important components:

1. What you can offer the other person

2. What you can offer the other person... and

3. What you can offer the other person

As with any sales pitch, make sure your "offer" is about the benefits it has for the listener. The goal is to convince the other person to want to do business with you.

Practice is crucial to delivering your pitch in a concise and effective manner. Write it down. Read it out loud. Commit it to memory. Then, while looking in the mirror, practice, practice, practice. Remember, one minute is the length you're aiming for, so don't forget to time yourself.

Here's how to deliver your elevator pitch to a likely contact/prospect:

  • Have your business card in an easily accessible place.
  • Make eye contact and smile.
  • Introduce yourself. Ask the individual what he does for a living. Now... it's "show time"!
  • Present your pitch - with enthusiasm - in one minute.

[Ed. Note: Bob Cox is co-founder of the first TV shopping network and the author of The Billionaire Way.

Listen to Robert's Power Surge Message next Wednesday and you'll quadruple your chances of meeting all your goals this year. Join over 700 ambitious Early to Risers who receive his inspiring, motivating and energizing advice every week as bona-fide members in ETR's Total Success Achievement Program.]