Business & Startups

5 Successful Elevator Pitch Examples – and How to Write Your Own

What is an elevator pitch?

A good elevator pitch summarises who you are, what you do, and the value you bring to a person.

It can either be a pitch about you or for your business.

Having a short, sharp, memorable elevator pitch is the ultimate way to attract new and beneficial relationships and opportunities for your company or brand. And while an elevator is just one of the most common ways to visualise the concept, there are many, many other places and ways one can be used to your advantage.

An elevator pitch is particularly effective on your ideal customers, for example. The truth is attention spans are ruthless these days (a study by Microsoft concluded that the average human attention span dropped from twelve to eight seconds in 2022), so an elevator pitch is one way to ensure that not only can you prove you know what you’re talking about quickly and concisely to yourself, but also to your potential customers in a way they actually care about.

In the famous words of Albert Einstein:

“If you can’t understand it simply, you don’t know it well enough.”

It can also be used to attract potential partners. As the story goes, Steve Jobs looked the President of Pepsi – who he wanted to poach – in the eyes and said:

“Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water, or do you want a chance to change the world?”

An elevator pitch is also an excellent tool to use with people who work in press or when you have a large audience you are planning to present to. You’ll want an elevator pitch in order to immediately pique their interest enough to want to find out more and hopefully convert into media opportunities or sales.

Elevator pitches extend far beyond the realms of physical elevators – you can use them anywhere, from parties, to keynote speeches to casual business chats over coffee, or on your website and press materials. It should be something you consider writing in your business plan from the very beginning when you’re ready to start your business.

How to write an elevator pitch

You must remember that the whole point is to get your most essential points across to your audience in a few precious seconds, and in a way that is meaningful to them, so this means ensuring that you’re not waffling on about your entire life story, bibliography or long list of product features (despite how interesting all of those things are to you personally).

Introduce yourself

It’s best practice to introduce yourself or your business as you would in any other conversation. It’s not essential or the only way (as you can start with an attention-grabber as shown with Steve Jobs’ pitch above), but it’s a polite and fail-safe place to start.

Present the problem

What problem does your business solve? There are so many problems in the world that need solving and in so many areas (from lifestyle to life-saving), with new challenges and struggles for people emerging everyday. If your business doesn’t solve a clear problem it is a very damning indicator of future failure.

Present your solution

Now that your elevator pitch has brought a (hopefully very relevant) problem to light in the mind of your audience, your business needs to be the solution for it. This is also called your “value proposition”. What does your company do that eases or solves the problem completely? And how can you make this sound essential and a no-brainer to all with the problem you put forward?

Bonus points if your solution features a USP (unique selling point) that makes you stand out from other competitors and businesses in your industry.

How long should an elevator pitch be?

The clue is in the title: an elevator pitch should be the length of a short elevator ride, around 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Yes, we know that’s hardly any time at all, but if you can step up to the challenge, the results are extremely effective, and the pitch will be an invaluable asset to your business for a lifetime.

Essential dos and don’ts


  • Get straight to the point
  • Keep it clear, concise, and easy to understand
  • Give it a hook to catch the other person’s attention
  • Stick to the important points: the problem that needs solving and the solution
  • Memorise it off the top of your head (you never know when opportunities may arise!)
  • Practice, practice, practice.


  • Tell your whole life or business story
  • Try to explain your entire business structure or every product or service feature
  • Use overly technical or scientific jargon
  • Be too vague – try to include at least one concrete achievement or qualifier that would command respect and cause people to stop and listen

A bad example of an elevator pitch would be:

“Hi, my name is Mary, but I know I need no introduction. I work in an office, doing a bit of this and a bit of that. Uhm, maybe you could fund some of my ideas one day even though I haven’t put together a full plan yet? I started thinking about the idea in University in 2002 when…”

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