An Elevator Pitch for Modernizr

Say, you’re creating a new startup. What’s one of the most important things you need badly? Money. But how do you convince someone to give you some cash? An elevator pitch. You need to think hard and produce 2-3 (not 20-30!) sentences that clearly explain what’s your product is about and why it’s better than tons of similar others.

This elevator pitch technique of being brief and up to the point is extremely important even if you’re not in the startup business. You always sell something even if there is no money involved. Let me stop beating around the bush.

There is a great little library that JavaScript developers must use – it’s called Modernizr. Now I challenge everyone who doesn’t know what it’s about to look at modernizr.com and try to figure it out from it’s main page.

Still have no clue after reading all this text? I don’t blame you. These guys created a great library, but they didn’t bother to sell it to you. It’s free – why bother selling, right? Wrong! If you like your product, spend some time trying to come up with an elevator pitch.

Have you read the section “Why use Modernizr?” Was it convincing enough? Do you feel the need to start using it? Actually, there are two important words buried in there: “feature detection”. This is it. This is the holly grail.

How to fix the text? I’d removed all the text from this page except the links and replaced it with just one statement:

Modernizr is a tiny JavaScript library that allows your JavaScript to detect if the latest HTML5 features are supported in the user’s browser. On the Web page load, it creates an object with dozens of properties indicating if particular features (e.g. canvas or audio) are supported so you can branch out your JavaScript program accordingly.

Having said that, I want to take my hat off to the creators of this little gem Modernizr.

Yakov Fain