Do You Have a Great Elevator Speech? How to Explain What You Do in 15 Words or Less

Do people stare at you blankly when you say you're a doula? Craft a short statement, aka an elevator speech, that tells people exactly what you do, for whom, and the primary benefit you provide. It will get people asking more about what you do, and then you can educate them about what doulas are and why they're important. InspiredBirthPro.comSo you're at a party (or a networking event), or maybe you're even in an elevator, and when meeting someone new you're asked, "What do you do?" If you respond with "I'm a birth doula", how many people respond with a blank look on their face? How long does it take for you to then explain what it is you do, and yet, the person still doesn't quite get it?

To make things easier, create a statement that, in about 15 words or less, describes WHAT YOU DO for women. For example, I could say to you:

"I give pregnant women guidance and physical support to help them have easier birth experiences."

You might have also heard this line described as an elevator speech -- in the amount of time it takes an elevator to travel one floor, what could you say to help someone understand what you do?

What Makes an Elevator Speech Great?

  1. It is specific, simple and brief.
  2. It doesn't contain complicated terminology, the process of how you work, or even your title.
  3. It explains who you work with (pregnant women), what you do (give guidance to help them), and a benefit they receive from working with you (have easier birth experiences).
  4. It more often than not encourages the person you're speaking to respond with "Tell me more."

Time to Create Your Own Elevator Speech

To create your own elevator speech, do the following exercise:

  1. Identify who your ideal clients are.
  2. Name the major problem they have. Why do they need you?
  3. Say what you do to help them and how?
  4. What is the result they experience by working with you? What is the main benefit they see by hiring you?

For example:

  1. My ideal clients are pregnant women.
  2. Their major problem is that they want to feel supported during their birth experience, with physical, emotional, and informational support.
  3. I help my ideal clients by giving them guidance to help their decision-making process prenatally and during labor and birth. I also provide physical support to help them relax, feel less discomfort, and help baby move into an optimal position for birth.
  4. As a result of working with me, my clients feel their labor and birth was easier because they had increased confidence, decreased fear, and they felt well-supported throughout their experience.

Finally, create your elevator speech using this format:

I [what - helping verb] [who - ideal customers] [how - how you solve their problem] [result - the benefit they received from working with you]

I [what - give] [who - pregnant women] [how - {give} guidance and physical support to help them] [result - have easier birth experiences.]

"I give pregnant women guidance and physical support to help them have easier birth experiences."

Practice Makes Perfect

Now, I bet you can come up with an elevator speech a lot more clever than mine. Brainstorm with friends and family; it will be helpful to ask people who don't know what a doula, childbirth educator or any other birth pro does. Once you have your elevator speech written out, memorize it and start using it. If people express confusion more often than they're asking for more information, revise your statement. As you gain more practice, your elevator speech will begin feeling more natural to you.

What Do I Say Next?

So you've said your elevator speech and are asked to speak more about what you do. Now what? We'll take a look at what you can say after your elevator speech in another post.

Have you created or refined your elevator speech? Share it with us in our Inspired Birth Pro group on Facebook!


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