"...so, what do you do?"
Do you readily have an engaging answer, dancing on the tip of your tongue?
Or did your heart just skip a beat at the thought?
If you could deliver a captivating answer to the inevitable "what do you do?" question—one that you'll know like the back of your hand—would you feel more confident talking about your business?
I remember exactly the moment in my sales career when I went from feeling like I may vomit all over someone's shoes to assuredly seeking and chatting with prospects.
What if you could recite your brief business introduction repeatedly and naturally so that it sparks a conversation and potentially seeds a new customer?
The start to successfully networking isn't to strum up numerous leads, but to spark a conversation.
Your introduction is your chance to incite a substantial business relationship.
Just like with your website, you only have a few seconds to "convince" people to care about you and what you do.
Build your natural, targeted, and repeatable business intro using the key formulas in this post.
Start with an "elevator pitch".
What's an elevator pitch?
According to Wikipedia, it is:
...a short summary used to quickly and simply define a profession, product, service, organization, or event and it's value proposition.
Initially, it was coined to demonstrate that the summary can and should be delivered within the time span of an elevator ride. Generally 30 to 90 seconds.
So when did the elevator pitch start to suck so hardcore it became a heavy-handed sales pitch?
Honestly, I have no idea.
The initial premise was exactly how I'd describe a normal, conversational introduction. However, somewhere down the line a full-out sales pitch sneaked its dirty little tentacles into that elevator.
Now, no disrespect to "sales people".
(No, we're not sales people here. We're sales ninjas. Yes, there's a difference. Sales ninjas introduce their businesses like real, tender human beings.)
Okay, so what makes a Sales Ninja?
A sales ninja knows "it's" not about you. It's about them.
Sure, you're introducing yourself and, yeah, you want to mention your business.
But it's not about you or your business or even your offer.
It's about what's important to your ideal prospect.
What's important to the person or people right in front of you.
A sales ninja delivers a solution to your customer's pains.
Perfect the Details
What do you do?
What problem(s) do you solve?
How is your product or service unique?
How can the customer "help" you?
So, what exactly do you do?
Let's say you're a representative for a health and wellness company.
Your primary products are oral supplements created for busy women who rarely get time to care for themselves—your target audience.
To narrow your niche and sales potential even further, "busy women" could change to "busy moms".
You know all moms in existence... *Insert winky face here*
A mom would hear "busy moms" and feel a deeper connection to what you're saying. That heightens her intrigue and tethers her attention.
Now if you know the woman you're speaking to is not a mom, you'd say "busy women", for a near-profound effect.
See how that works?
The problem you're solving is that moms are busy. Point-blank. That's a given. And moms typically put themselves last after taking care of their family's needs.
She's hearing that your product and service will make her life easier. She's hearing that you're providing a solution to her lack of attention to her own well-being dilemma.
How is your product unique? Let's say your supplements are 100% organic and directly grown in your country (the United States, for example). They're not tested on animals and they're biodegradable. That's a lot of information to cram into less than 60 seconds, but you're just listing ideas right now.
And how can your customer help you? This is your "call-to-action". It's easy to quit at an introduction, but you want her to act.
Ditch the Pitch
TIP 1: You're a problem-solver who generates specific outcomes with your product or service.
So take it there.
If you're an established entrepreneur, what are some of your best customer outcomes?
Write them down.
If you're new and have no customer experiences to reflect on, make the intended outcome for your customer or client clear and relatable to their situation.
TIP 2: Forego "features" for solutions.
Ditching the pitch starts at stripping the idea of selling to your prospect.
Instead of saying something like: "these supplements build stronger immune systems and long-lasting energy," you'd share one specific outcome that your prospect can relate to.
TIP 3: Say goodbye to the potentially sleazy salesperson.
She'll tune you out in two-hot-seconds if she sniffs the stench of a sales pitch.
Remember to continually be thinking about how your product can help her.
You'll come across as a real person, conversational, and much more professional than the product-pusher with an agenda.
Focus on her heart. Not on her wallet.
Practice Makes . . . Sales Ninja
Practice with your mirror, a friend, your mom, or your dog.
Practice with someone who will be honest, patient, and constructive—not critical.
Remember these key points:
Make it natural—practice helps this.
Make it targeted—know your audience, what ails them and your solution.
Make it easy to repeat—keep it short. As close to 30 seconds as possible. Practice, again, makes repetition simpler.
Script it—if you need to. Writing several variations out and using that to practice from can work wonders.
Time it—keep your intro at 60 seconds or less. Shoot for 30 seconds, if possible.
Summon your inner, non-sleazy sales ninja.
Let's say you're in the children's play area at the mall with your kids.
You're chatting with a nice woman when (finally) she asks, "So, what do you do?"
This is the health and wellness supplement introduction before it was ninja-fied:
"...I'm a Health and Wellness Rep for Fit & Firm. I've been a rep for two years and can help you be firmer and fitter. Here's my card. Please call me if you're interested."
How horrible is that, right?
(You weren't going to say that, were you...?)
Please. You're a sales ninja.
So, after ninja-fication:
Concise, strong, and a conversation promoter.
Your prospect will be more inclined to ask questions like, "Eighteen pounds? How did she do it?!"
Engage your prospect. Don't leave them easily telling you "No" with a close-ended business introduction.
Help them want to know more.
Start by listing.
List your customer's problem(s) and your solution(s) to it.
Use variations in describing what it is that you actually do.
Start building your ninja-fied business introduction today.