Tell me what you do, I’m not interested!

It is quite natural to assume that others will share your enthusiasm for your business.

Natural, but wrong. They might look to acquire more knowledge over time but on first meeting what they actually want is a simple soundbite.

Here’s an experiment – ask a few people linked through business (not colleagues or customers) what it is you do – I’m guessing you will be surprised by how many are off the mark.

As a sales person for your business – the fault lies squarely with you – and is almost certainly because you have told them too much, not because you have been too brief.

Unfortunately, concepts like the ‘elevator pitch’, or 60-second intro exacerbate the problem – whilst it sounds brief, 60 seconds is actually a long time to talk about something the other party isn’t engaged with.

Straplines can seem crass – particularly if too much effort goes into making them ‘clever’ – but the value of creating a strapline is the thought process involved in condensing what you do into a short snappy phrase – whatever you may think – that is what the other person wants.

So next time you are in an elevator, deliver your strapline, swap cards and talk about the weather, the World Cup or – of course – their business.

Believe me – they don’t care how many people you employ.