At many networking and other events, you may have a very short time to introduce yourself and give a thumbnail sketch of yourself and your business.

Create an introduction that will help people remember who you are and what you do.

This is your Personal Presentation – also called the Elevator Pitch or your 60 second presentation.

Your personal presentation should be no less than 20 seconds long.

When starting out, 20-30 seconds is a good time to aim for and should cover some basic elements, such as:

1. Your Name

2. Your Company

3. Specifically what you do or how you help your clients

Remember, though, that if your audience looks puzzled and asks you to explain – you may need to start again on your Personal Presentation.

It helps to develop a number of presentations to use in different circumstances.

Incorporating the type of leads or referrals you are looking for will expand your Personal Presentation.

This can now be up to 60 seconds long and this is also an opportunity to give more insight in how you help your clients.

Always know what you want so that you can ask for it.

People won’t know how they can help you unless you tell them.

The words ‘help’, ‘provide’, ‘contribute’, ‘give’, ‘teach’, and ‘solve’ are important words to use in your Personal Presentation.

If your introduction is successful and understood, it should invite discussion.

If, on the other hand, it closes off the conversation, you may need to think again!

It is not easy to develop your Personal Presentation, but once you have it refined, you have an essential marketing tool at your disposal.

Develop an image of your ‘ideal client’.

What industry do they work in, what is their company size, etc.

This will help fellow networkers ‘see’ opportunities for you. It can also save you a lot of time chasing down leads that are not right for you.

Focus on the problems you can solve, not on what you do. “We design websites” doesn’t have as much impact as “We help companies find new business on the internet”.

Be specific and have a narrow focus – don’t try and play all your cards at once.

Rehearse your introduction until you can say it easily and professionally.

Practice on your own and with others to get the flow of words right.

Ask for feedback. Ask for suggestions on how you can make your message clearer.

If people ask “What does that mean?” instead of “How does that work?” you know you’ve got it wrong.

Remember that your prospects are listening for the benefit for them. The ‘What’s In It For Me’ (WIIFM) syndrome comes into effect, so work on your Personal Presentation to show how you can solve their problems.

Commit your Presentation to memory.

It should ideally be 120 to 150 words long and practice it until comes naturally.

The actual words that you learn to use when you develop your Presentation can become the most profitable 20 – 60 seconds you may ever use.

Keep practicing and honing your introduction. You never know when you might need it!

•           Use it when you don’t have a lot of time

•           Use it when meeting people for the first time

•           It should help to engage your prospect in conversation

•           Offers your prospect something

•           Helps with your confidence

And Finally:

When writing your 60 second Personal Presentation try and be creative; don’t say “We design web sites” say “We help companies find new business on the internet.”

Don’t say “I am an Accountant” say “We help our clients pay less tax.”

Develop your Memory Hook or Tag Line; use it on all your printed materials, business cards, flyers etc and also whenever you meet someone new.

eg: A Financial Advisor may say: Doctors save lives; I save lifestyles.

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