Ups and downs of the “elevator pitch”
Ever heard the idea of the elevator pitch? If you’d rather not let Wikipedia enlighten you, I can summarize by saying that, well… it’s a summary.
An elevator pitch (or elevator speech or statement) is a short summary used to quickly and simply define a product, service, or organization and its value proposition.
It takes its name from the idea that you can finish the proposal in no more than a minute’s time, for instance the time you might happen to be on an elevator ride with your busy boss or film producer or whatnot.
I’m terrible at it.
I remember at one of our early convention appearances where I tried to explain Zombie Ranch to an acquaintance of ours who works in the movie industry, and after I finished rambling he flat out told me, “You need to work on your pitch”.
Nearly two years later, I still haven’t found that perfect short-form alchemy that is both snazzy to the ear and presents all of what I consider to be the key concepts and unique aspects of this comic. I have our introduction blurb which is the closest I think I’ve come, but it sounds better written than spoken and is probably way too long for a world where a lot of pitches are boiled down to statements like ”Die Hard on a Space Station”.
If I try that I end up with “It’s Lonesome Dove meets Hatari! meets Deadliest Catch meets Night of the Living Dead meets…” and DING! the elevator has arrived and there goes the boss. But if I just say “Deadliest Catch meets Night of the Living Dead“, or worse, “Cowboys vs. Zombies”, they might end up intrigued in entirely the wrong way, with long-term disappointment for everyone.
I don’t know, maybe it’s actually a good thing that I have trouble condensing Zombie Ranch into a quick sound bite. Or maybe I’m just making excuses for being terminally long-winded.
So hey, you out there… fair assumption that you read the comic, right? How would you sell someone on it in sixty seconds or less? Or would you even bother to try?