“One Minute” Intros

I’ve been doing a lot of online networking recently and whilst it is really lovely to see everyone it can be quite challenging in terms of the “one-minute” introductions. I use quotation marks around the “one-minute” very deliberately because whilst sometimes we have thirty seconds or maybe 40 seconds, on other occasions it might be one or two minutes.

Of course we had these differences in our pre-Covid face-to-face networking, but somehow it seemed a lot easier to time your introductions when actually meeting up face-to-face as you can pick up cues from the person doing the timing and the “feel” and reaction in the room. It actually feels much more difficult online, especially when you can see the timer counting down in front of you!

What I have been doing is identifying a topic for the month, then creating an introduction using that theme based on the shortest amount of time I will be speaking for. Once I can “tell the story” in that timescale I simply compose some extra info for longer introductions…

… and of course the advantage of online networking is that you can have this extra info on prompt cards in case you have a compete “brain freeze” as happened to me the other day!

What to talk about?

I always suggest starting introduction in the same way – your name, business name and a simple, easy to understand sentence summarising what you do, before moving onto your main content – and it is this main content which you can vary.

I identify material for this main content from three main areas:

What have I been discussing recently?

Frequently I will get several calls from different prospective customers but coincidentally they are all focussed on one particular subject. Recently I have had several discussions with both readers and prospective advertisers about my cover images, so I will be talking about this in November. What is your “topic of the moment”?

What have I been doing this week?

Perhaps I have been editing articles and checking out advice from the Advertising Standards Authority so I will talk about the ASA and the requirement to ensure adverts comply with their guidelines – i.e. share your knowledge.

What have I heard about…?

… in the news, or read about in a publishing / marketing journal or seen on LinkedIn that is relevant to my business? Perhaps there has been a piece of market research published, a report presented by a national body, a new piece of legislation that will affect your customers or simply a piece of journalism that might be interesting to mention. Is there “News” that affects your business?

The reason I try and identify topics in areas that I have been talking about, working on and finding out about is that they are all subjects I know and can talk about with ease. I am not having to research, learn and memorise something new. I am talking about my business, the way it works and the wider context in which I operate – and I can quite comfortably do this for days on end!

Coffee and Connect Introductions

Finally, I just wanted to reassure you that we are always very gentle with our timing reminders at Coffee and Connect and if we do need to ask you to finish your introduction it will be done with a smile and understanding.