A: Knowing how to articulate your organisations values and expertise in a short and concise way is immensely valuable to your networking and business promotion success, but to be effective, it has to be genuine and it has to have meaning. It’s not just a summary of your organisation products and services. Here are a few tips:
- Never memorise your 30-second commercial. It should come out differently every time. Just know what you want to say, and practice talking about it in different ways. You should know what points you want to hit, but it should sound genuinely conversational, not rehearsed.
- Avoid sounding like a script. Writing and talking are different, and should be approaching differently.
- Include strong “value” statements. Instead of boring them with just a list of your skills or experience, make certain you include strong “value” statements – something that cuts to the heart of what you help your clients achieve (i.e., the benefit from the work you do). For example, instead of just saying “I’m a Controller with 22 years’ experience” you could say “My speciality is looking after a company’s most prized passion – their balance sheet. I look after the bottom line and help companies achieve more with the resources they have.” Then you can say “I’m a Controller with over 22 years’ experience…”
When you deliver your 30-second commercial, practice making it sound natural. This may take a bit of practice, but make certain you throw in the pauses, inflections, and little features that make conversational speech natural.
Here’s a little exercise to practice sounding natural. Pick a topic you know LOTS about – it could be anything (cooking, gardening, football, art, whatever) – and start talking about it. Chances are you know what to say, you sound intelligent, and you sound natural because it’s not rehearsed. You just know what to say. That’s the conversational tone you want to shoot for – natural and professional.