An investment pitch is not simply about you and your idea. Convincing investors to finance your dream is a complicated dance of interaction. Use this condensed guide to hone your pitch and seal the deal.
Most investors are open to diverse ideas but will usually stick to certain industries or niches with which they are familiar. The first step to finding an investor is to zero in on those who have previously invested in similar areas or startups.
The next step is to study the history of their investments. Do they prefer to step in right at the beginning for more control? Do they prefer that the business has hit a certain turnover or investment threshold before they come aboard? What kind of pitches do they like? This information will help you adjust yours for different audiences to improve your odds of landing an investor.
Time and Pace
Successful leaders value their time and so should you. Distil your pitch to the absolute bare essentials; if they want to know more, they will ask. If they don’t, you will have saved everyone a bit of time.
So how much is enough and how much is too much? It all depends:
- Take your cues from your audience. If they look bored or impatient, wind up.
- Always take slightly less than the time they allocate to you.
- Take less time than you initially tell them you will.
- Stick to your plan and maintain an even pace.
It’s Not Just a Pitch, It’s a Story
And the factor that makes the difference is emotion. The love of storytelling is literally in our DNA and a story that evokes emotions in your audience is the one that they will remember.
Investors are bombarded with investment pitches that rely heavily on charts and data. Although they have immense value in their own right, the information is unlikely to resonate without an emotional hook. The best thing is that you don’t have to concoct emotion. You have walked an arduous road to that place and time, standing before your audience. Lay yourself bare and leave an impression.
It’s Not Just an Idea, It’s Tangible
Seeing is believing and holding is knowing. Pictures, models, and prototypes can be the clincher when words are not enough. Always try to give your investors something they can hold and handle themselves when the idea allows. If you are improving on a product, hand them a poor example of that product and then bedazzle them with your new and improved version.
The Bottom Line is Money
Sure, you want to improve the world, your investors want to improve the world… but money makes the world go around. You can be certain that when potential investors are done with questions about the product, the next question(s) will be about revenue.
Show them your plan to acquire and retain customers. Project a revenue stream with data you can defend. Offer a timeline of when they can expect to recoup the money they invest. When investors can see that you have done the hard yards to protect their investment, they will be more likely to give you the money you need.
Please contact me today if you have any questions about perfecting your investment pitch.