How to Nail your Elevator Pitch?
The first impression is the last impression, you must have heard. And man, that is so true in this cut-throat competitive world. There are too many voices in the world, and every voice has its uniqueness. However, for the potential client, you need to raise your voice above the rest and make it sound to the right ears. It is in that one moment that you can either make it or break it. And to make it, have your pitch right and rule the world.
An elevator pitch is fundamentally a short (think 30 seconds!) sales pitch wherein you have to project and sell your idea. From establishing yourself to introducing your idea to convincing the client to know further about the idea, an elevator pitch has it all. It is indeed time taken by the elevator to reach the ground floor to the top floor (metaphorically as well!)
Now you may ask, why do we need elevator pitches in publishing houses? Well, the editors, on average, received over 100 to 150 manuscripts daily for evaluation. Yes, that much! And it is impossible for the human mind to read full manuscripts and evaluate all of them. Well, they do, but they do not read the full book. They will not sit till 300 pages for every book to know the climax. Now, here come the elevator pitch, which you can also say is the synopsis (book blurb) of your book. Along, with the synopsis publishing houses also require About the author, 2-3 sample chapters from your book, and if there is any competitive title in the market.
It means telling your plot in a paragraph. Easy? It seems so but it is pretty complicated. It has to be precise, and intriguing, and should give information to an extent that it doesn’t reveal the full plot. It needs to overwhelm readers so that they are obliged to pick up the book and read. Use a hook line at the very start. Something that diverts attention quickly. You can perhaps use or introduce the main theme. Now for the second line, slowly plunge into the story and introduce the main character. Now talk about what problem your character faces or what that causes drama in the book, and then slowly turn to the climax but don’t reveal the end. You can leave it open-ended or on a question, or something for the readers to think about.
For non-fiction, first thing is to know your market audience. Write what’s so unique about your book that the readers will not get in any other books. Write it in affirmations and authoritative voice so that it adds substance and volume to your words. Showcase your knowledge about the concept and not what is there in the book. You can also add a testimony from a known person to add significance to your work.
PS Remember to keep the blur in 100-120 words!
Your bio is your calling card, a visiting card, that will project you in front of an alien person. It should talk about all things nice. From your basic information like where you put up to where you had your schooling, it should have all your basic details about your whereabouts. However, this should not exceed one- or one-and-a-half-line top. Next, talk about your accolades – awards you have won, special mentions you ever had, any prestigious courses you have completed, you have written any previous books, or written a story or article in a magazine/newspaper. Anything that adds shine to your name and makes you stand out. And remember to always write in the third person to sound modest.
PS Remember to keep the about the author in 80-100 words!
In a world full of books, yours can’t be the only book with a specific theme. There will be some famous or unfamous books talking about the same theme but of course a different storyline. You need to know about those books, inside-out. What were their positive points, where did they lack, what more could they have done, how they did do third marketing, who was their target audience, how audience receipted their work, and last but most important, how your book is different and better than all those books? You don’t have to criticize or demean their work. Absolutely no! You have to put forth a valid argument, laced with thorough research and facts, finally coming to the point that your work is better than theirs and the publishers should select your work for publishing. As a blessing in disguise, by doing so you will get an idea of the dos and don’ts of your book and you can use it for your betterment!
I hope by now, you’re clear on how to write your pitch and leave a lasting impression on your publisher!
So go and play your cards well to ace your pitch. And do not forget to tell us in the comments how it went!