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How to answer ‘So, what do you do?’ (in 20 seconds)

Written by Nathan Williams on .

Has there ever been a more common, innocuous question which gets answered so badly? Think about it – we’ve all regretted asking this question because so many people have a poor answer.

Given it’s often the first step in the sales process and our ability to answer this question has a big bearing on whether we attract more of our ideal clients… is it any wonder this question causes some anxiety?

With this in mind, let’s look at how to answer ‘So, what do you do?’

What’s the big, relatable problem you solve?

People care about the problems we solve and how it might help them and/or the people they know. They are more motivated to avoid problems than investing in a solution, so let’s not don’t bang on about our six step process…people don’t care about what we do until they understand the problems we solve.

Communicate a big, relatable problem that you solve in simple terms which gets their head nodding in acknowledgement within the first five to ten seconds.

Touch on the solution

Briefly mention your solution as the clear, logical answer to the problem you’ve already outlined – now is not the time for detail, it should simply provide a glimpse of your offering and the confidence that you have the solution so they ask you about it later.

The (ultimate) outcomes you deliver

Focus on the ‘ultimate’ outcomes that best relate to the customer’s buying reasons as opposed to the ‘process outcomes’ that get delivered as a matter of course.

For example, people don’t just want more confidence when it comes to selling and a more effective sales process, they want to get more of their ideal clients.

Your purpose/beliefs

People buy from people, so don’t be afraid to reveal a bit of your purpose and motivation. Our goal is to appeal to people’s beliefs which engenders trust, engages them emotionally in the buying process and ultimately moves them from ‘let me think about it’ to ‘let’s do it.’

Here’s a 20 second answer to ‘So, what do you do?’ which I prepared earlier…

‘So, what do you do?’

Well, you know how people often find it challenging to answer that question in a way which really grabs your attention? (Problem)…

…Well…we have a 4 phase ‘Perfect Pitch Program’ (Solution)…

…Which helps businesses best communicate their value and attract more of their ideal clients… (Outcome)

…You see, business isn’t always fair…we can create a lot of value, but if we can’t communicate it we’ll miss out on the clients that we deserve. I love helping businesses best communicate their value, so they can attract more of the ideal clients they deserve. (Purpose/Beliefs)

Over to you now…what’s your best answer to ‘So, what do you do?’ in 20 seconds or less?

The benefits of developing a Perfect Pitch can be substantial, so if you don’t have in – house expertise – seek help. Customer Return help small and medium sized businesses attract more of their ideal clients, faster.

Got the Perfect Pitch? Try our 2 minute perfect pitch self-evaluation.