How To Answer “What Do You Do?”

By Alexis Rodrigo | Entrepreneurship

Jan 26

coffee talk

What do you say when someone asks,

“What do you do?”

Watch the video below to find out what’s wrong with how most people answer this question, and a better formula you can use:

Prefer to Read?

Here’s the gist of the video:

Most of us respond to “What do you do?” by using titles or positions. For example, I could answer, “I’m a copywriter and online marketing consultant.”

This answer is correct and truthful.

However, it’s also flat and doesn’t help me connect with my Ideal Clients if they’re the ones who happen to ask me the question.

Here’s a better formula:

“I help + (my Ideal Clients) + (achieve this big result) + (optional qualifier).”

If you want to see how I use this formula, you’ll have to watch the video.

What Do You Think?

If you try to apply this formula, what do you come up with? Share your answer with me in the comments below.

Oh and if you liked this tip, I invite you to sign up for more online marketing, social media, and copywriting tips from me in the sidebar on the right. Thank you!

UPDATE: If you liked this video, you’ll be glad to know this is just a drop in the bucket of what I learned from Isabel Parlett, the Soundbite Shaman. The best part is, Isabel is releasing four videos on “How to Say What You Do When What You Do Is Deep, Powerful, And Hard To Describe”. Click here to get your free access to these videos.
Lexi Rodrigo

Creative Commons License photo credit: AnyaLogic


About the Author

Lexi Rodrigo is passionate about creating web content that helps extraordinary businesses to attract more prospects, create community, and make more sales.

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Alexis Rodrigo, Mark Smallman. Mark Smallman said: RT @lexirodrigo: How to Answer "What Do You Do?" […]

  • Lexi,

    I think that this is a great video. I am going to start using this method myself. I think that everyone needs to hone their elevator pitch.


    • Alexis says:

      @Steve R. Pottle – Thanks Steve! I’m glad you liked the video. I’m looking forward to reading your elevator speech πŸ™‚

  • Hi Lexi,
    That’s a great formula. Here’s how I applied it.

    “I help supervisors and managers create happy, enthusiastic and energized employees even if they have very little time or money.”

    How’s that?

    • Alexis says:

      @Harriet Meyerson – Thanks for dropping by! Your elevator speech sounds good! Try it out and see how others respond. If you’re talking to your Ideal Client, this should pique their interest and want to know more about how you do what you do.

  • This is a great tip! I’m trying to figure out the words I’d use to fill each of those areas. Harriet did a great job in using this formula.

    • Alexis says:

      @Alaina Frederick – Glad you like it! Try the formula and show me what you come up with. You can just email it to me if you don’t like others to see. I’ll be happy to give you some feedback πŸ˜€

  • Excellent advice, Lexi! You’ve helped me narrow down my elevator speech to one sentence — a sentence that highlights the benefits of what I do instead of just the features.

    Thank you!

  • […] Don’t have a tagline yet? Start with your elevator speech. If you’ve crafted a good elevator speech, you can use a condensed version of it as your tagline. This post gives a useful formula for writing your elevator speech. […]

  • >