Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Making Your Pitch

Before you even get started with fundraising for your business, be sure to have survival plans at all stages in case things are not going well (i.e. a Plan A, B & C). Think about what you will do in the event things don’t happen the way you would expect – are there any other ways you will be able to get out of the business or people you can sell to in case things go terribly wrong?

You should also start thinking of talking to angel investors, as soon as you have “proof of concept.” This means that you should aim to have customers by the time you start approaching angels and hopefully you will even have examples of repeat customers who have great things to say about your product.
When making your pitch or sending materials to angel investors, a nice added bonus that can really help your chances is to include in your Appendix of materials, an email from a customer about your product (i.e. a “love letter”).

Keep in mind that most companies that successfully receive funding from angel investors typically have at least six months of a proven track record that someone will buy their product.
After sending over a teaser or executive summary, some angels will ask for either a business plan or give you an opportunity to pitch the business to them. You will often be given an hour, but try to have no more than 10 slides with crisp, clean bullets.

Be sure to practice your pitch several times in front of people who will tell you the truth. You have to be confident and believe in what you are doing or else investors will sense that you’re being tentative. Aim for confidence, not arrogance, and be sure to look and sound upbeat and excited.
In the first three to five minutes of your pitch, you really have to get to their emotions and get them hooked quickly. Show and tell them that your idea is a disruptive technology that will bring substantial returns for equity investors. Basically, have the first few minutes be a brief summary of the whole presentation, similar to an elevator pitch.

If you go past 30 minutes on just the PowerPoint, your presentation is probably too long because you need to leave enough time to answer all of their questions.  At the end of the presentation, in order to make sure you’re not wasting any more of your time or their time, I would recommend that before you leave, you should ask, “If we can produce what we are saying in this presentation, does this fit your investment criteria?”
Don’t forget to follow-up that evening with a quick email or message saying something along the lines of, “Thank you for your time today. We obviously strongly believe in this idea and would love to have you as an investor with us.”

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for posting this types of blog, i was searching such a long time and finally I got it. So I hope you will continue with the same.
    Angel Investor