You’ve mastered your elevator pitch — kudos! That’s an excellent start.
But stopping at the elevator won’t cut it in the world of copywriting.
You need a well-stocked arsenal of persuasive pitches to captivate clients and sell your services.
Let’s look at the six additional pitches you should have in your toolkit. They come from Daniel Pink’s book, To Sell Is Human.
Nail these pitches, and you’ll be ready for any client encounter.
Why the Elevator Pitch Is No Longer Enough
Remember when a great elevator pitch was your ticket to a successful business proposal?
Well, times have changed. While the classic elevator pitch — a 30-second summary of your services — is far from obsolete, it’s not enough in today’s fast-paced business landscape.
- We live in an era of information overload, where audiences are hounded by messages from all directions. The constant din makes capturing and holding attention difficult.
- Today’s audiences are more informed, savvy, and skeptical than ever. They’re not easily swayed by a surface-level pitch. They want more depth than a 30-second spiel can deliver.
- It’s harder to stand out from the crowd. The elevator pitch can be formulaic, making it challenging to differentiate your offer. More varied pitching techniques offer opportunities to showcase your unique strengths.
- Context matters. The elevator pitch is designed for a brief, face-to-face encounter, often in a business or networking setting. We pitch our businesses in multiple contexts — email introductions, social media posts, formal presentations. A one-size-fits-all elevator pitch doesn’t always fit.
- Finally, a successful pitch isn’t about what you offer. It’s about creating a meaningful connection where you offer relief to a pain point. This requires a flexible approach that doesn’t rely on the traditional monologue-style elevator pitch.
That’s where these six new pitches come in. Having multiple ways to talk about your business lets you use the one that best fits the situation.
Let’s look at the six additional pitches taught by Daniel Pink.
1. The One-Word Pitch
The One-Word Pitch distills your entire offering into a single, potent word.
The magic lies in its clarity. It cuts through the noise and leaves a lasting imprint on your client’s mind.
Your One-Word Pitch isn’t a word that describes your services, like copywriting.
The key to crafting a successful One-Word Pitch is finding a word that encompasses the essence of your brand, product, or service. It needs to be meaningful or resonate with your target audience.
For example, HubSpot says their one-word pitch could be flywheel. The Flywheel Model has been synonymous with HubSpot since they adopted the flywheel to explain their approach to marketing and business strategy.
2. The Question Pitch
Questions engage the audience’s mind, prompting them to think.
A well-structured question can be more persuasive than a statement because it leads the audience to convince themselves. It’s a nudge for them to reflect on their needs, problems, or aspirations and how your offering could be the solution.
The key here is to ask a question that provokes thought. Ideally, your question should lead to an answer that aligns with your service’s value proposition.
Consider the classic campaign for milk: “Got Milk?”
This seemingly simple question forced consumers to consider whether they had enough milk at home, subtly suggesting the product’s importance in their daily lives.
And it was incredibly effective.
3. The Rhyming Pitch
The Rhyming Pitch uses the power of rhyme to create catchy pitches that stick in your client’s mind.
Research published in Psychology Today shows that rhyming statements are often perceived as more truthful or accurate. They have a specific flow that makes them attractive to listeners.
You need to create a rhyme that shares your key message and resonates with your audience. It’s a delicate balance of relevance and rhythm.
One of the most famous examples of a Rhyming Pitch comes from the legal world.
During the O.J. Simpson trial, defense attorney Johnnie Cochran said, “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”
The phrase, referring to a glove that allegedly didn’t fit Simpson’s hand, made the defense’s argument seem more persuasive.
Or, for those of you who used Electrolux vacuums, you’ll remember “Nothing sucks like an Electrolux.”
The Rhyming Pitch requires creativity and precision, but the payoff can be a pitch that not only sticks but persuades.
4. The Subject Line Pitch
In the age of digital communication, the Subject Line Pitch has taken on significant importance.
This pitch is designed to capture attention in the inbox, convincing your recipient to open the email and engage with its contents.
A successful Subject Line Pitch needs to balance intrigue with information.
You want to pique curiosity without being so vague that the recipient doesn’t understand what the email is about.
And keep it concise. With many people checking emails on their phones, subject lines can get cut off if they’re too long.
There’s an art to creating compelling subject lines. Great examples often include a benefit, create urgency, or tap into emotions.
Take this recent subject line from footwear company DSW: It’s go time! 25% Off
This subject line promises a clear benefit (25% off), creates urgency (It’s go time! Don’t miss out!), and lets the recipient know what the email is about (SALE!).
It’s simple, concise, and creates a clear incentive for the recipient to open the email.
5. The Twitter Pitch
The Twitter Pitch conveys your proposition in 280 characters or less.
Even if you or your clients aren’t on Twitter, the principles of the Twitter Pitch are still valuable. They can be adapted for any platform that favors brevity.
A great Twitter Pitch has several elements.
It should be succinct, but it must also be intriguing.
It should communicate the essence of your message and inspire your audience to want to learn more.
And you should inject some brand personality or voice into it — authenticity goes a long way on social media.
If you’re pitching your copywriting services, you might craft a Twitter Pitch like:
“Crafting words that sing, sell, and stick. Ready to boost your brand’s voice? Let’s chat! #copywriting #branding.”
This pitch is concise yet comprehensive — it outlines what you do (craft words), the benefits (sing, sell, stick), and includes a call-to-action (let’s chat). The hashtags (#copywriting, #branding) make it easier for interested parties to find your pitch.
6. The Pixar Pitch
As a copywriter, you know a compelling story is at the heart of every great pitch. And who better to learn storytelling from than Pixar, the studio that has brought us some of the most engaging, memorable narratives of the past few decades?
The Pixar Pitch is a formula used by Pixar to structure their films. It goes like this:
- Once upon a time, there was __.
- Every day, __.
- One day __.
- Because of that, __.
- Because of that, __.
- Until finally __.
How does this apply to copywriting?
The Pixar Pitch can be adapted to tell any story, including the story of your services and their value to your clients.
Let’s say you’re a copywriter specializing in website content. Your Pixar Pitch could look something like this:
- Once upon a time, there was a brand with a great product, but their lackluster website content was costing them customers.
- Every day, they lost potential sales because their website didn’t communicate their product’s benefits.
- One day, they hired a skilled copywriter to revamp their website content.
- Because of that, their website began to resonate with their target audience, and they noticed a significant increase in engagement and time spent on their site.
- Because of that, they saw a substantial increase in their conversion rates, and their sales began to grow.
- Until, finally, their website became a powerful sales tool, driving their business success.
See how it works? The Pixar Pitch is a powerful way to tell your brand’s story. It’s engaging, relatable, and persuasive.
Ready to Level Up Your Pitch Game?
You now have six more tools in your copywriting toolkit, each with unique strengths and applications.
And guess what? They’re not just for you — you can (and should) offer to write these pitches for your clients, too.
The elevator pitch will always have its place. But these six pitches help you stand out in a crowded marketplace and sell your services more effectively.
Here’s to captivating your prospective clients, one pitch at a time.