30 Second Commercials Suck

Let me get straight to the point.

Stop using the old style 30 Second Commercials.

You do not need to validate yourself every time you introduce yourself to others.

Validation should occur only when asked.


The supposed best practices of 30 second commercials, as told to us over the past decades has been to state:

#1 – Your name and associated credential.
#2 – Your career goal.
#3 – How have you demonstrated your skills related to your goal.
#4 – Your career qualifications.
#5 – Then ask a question about the other person.

Here are a few problems I have with this style of 30 second commercials, in most instances:

  1. Most introductions where people use their 30 second commercials are not to people who want or need to validate us.
  2. If the other person wants or needs to validate us, let them ask a specific question in that regard.
  3. Most of the time the question the other person has is simply, ‘who are you?’
  4. If they do want to ‘validate’ us, let’s make sure we use the best possible example based on a direct question.
  5. When you feel compelled to use a scripted validation, it often does not come across sincere or real
  6. When you feel compelled to validate yourself, it can sound like you are not completely sure or confident of yourself.

I have never really thought about this before, but I do not think I have ever introduced myself with validation statements.

Today my introduction when someone asks me who I am is; “I’m Teddy Burriss a LinkedIn Coach, Trainer and Public Speaker. My purpose is helping business professionals get real value from their investment into LinkedIn. What do you do?”

Often I even trim my intro down to, “I’m Teddy Burriss, LinkedIn Coach & Trainer. What do you do Monday – Friday 9-5 to enjoy yourself?” Simple with a touch of humor as I hand the conversation back to them.

Ponder these ideas for a moment:

  • How often are you using your 30 second commercial when the person only wants to know who you are, with no need to validate what you say?
  • Let the validation occur in an open conversation rather than a scripted and robotic response.
  • Wait till you are asked for validation and position your reply in context to what you learned about them.
  • Simplify your ’30 Second commercial to a 10 second and make it engaging rather than full disclosure & validation
  • Be a little different and a little better than every other person in career transition and position yourself better in the process.
  • Networking events and even job fairs are all about meeting people and getting into a conversation. Start with a friendly introduction and as the conversation progresses, consider what validation is relevant and important.

I’m way different than most people and realize that my philosophies may not appeal to everyone. However, I’ve found this has worked for me over the past 40 some odd years. Maybe these ideas could work for you as well.

I would love to hear your ideas on this topic. Comment on this blog article, LinkedIn or Facebook Post.



Author: tlburriss

I am a Networking Strategist and LinkedIn coach and Trainer. I live by my personal edict, "Networking is finding, developing and nurturing relationships that mutually move people forward thru life." I want to help people become better Networkers and better LinkedIn users focused on their business and career goals.