Types of Pitches: Elevator, Business, and Investor
In the universe of pitching, there are several different types of pitches. In this post, I’m going to define the primary three types: Elevator, Business, and Investor.
The infamous “Elevator Pitch” is purported to be what you can tell someone about yourself and what you do in the length of an elevator ride. Technically, the length of an Elevator Pitch depends on the height of the building, but we generally consider these Pitches to be anywhere from 30 to 90 seconds in length.
Features of an Elevator Pitch
- Short - 30 to 90 seconds
- Delivered either one-to-one or to a group but with no slides
- A conversation starter (meaning you want to be interrupted, so build in some pauses)
The difference between a Business Pitch and an Investor Pitch is first and foremost the audience. They are also different lengths.
The audience for a Business Pitch can be potential clients, potential employees, or resource partners, whereas the audience for an Investor Pitch is… well, investors. Business Pitches are generally 3-5 minutes, while Investor Pitches can run 10–12 minutes.
In a standard Business Pitch, you should:
- Clarify the problem you address and the solution you provide (including your technology)
- Define your market (global, addressable, and beachhead)
- Say what you are up to right now (shows that things are happening)
- Introduce your management team (why you?)
- Ask for a non-monetary resource
The focus of the Investor Pitch is finance and money. An Investor Pitch should include everything in your Business Pitch PLUS:
- A business/revenue model
- The competition
- Sales and marketing plan
- Traction (existing cash flow)
- 5-years of financial projections (abbreviated format)
- Funding requirements (a financial “ask”)
It is best to create your Business Pitch first, then go on to build out your Investor Pitch. As a rule of thumb, 30% of your Investor Pitch can be a concise version of your Business Pitch, the other 70% should be the money and financial topics mentioned above.
No matter which type of pitch you are building, remember to focus your message, identify key vocabulary, and be concise. Creating a pitch is always a clarifying exercise, so be sure to give yourself enough time to create several versions. Eventually, you will arrive at the one that rings true.