I’m Just A Startup Standing In Front Of An Investor Asking Him To Invest: What Investors Look For In A Pitch
As a founder of a startup, you’ll have a vision and a plan for how your business will grow. But, do you know how to get investment funding?
Investment funding is how you get your startup off the ground. If you have enough money saved up so that you don’t need any outside investment, good for you. However, if you are like many other startup founders then you’ll need a reliable and capable investor to help build your company.
There are plenty of investors looking to invest in a startup but your startup needs to be ready for it.
By reading this post you’ll find out what investors are looking for and how to get investment funding.
Show Your Commitment
Showing your commitment to your vision is a surefire way to get investment funding for your startup.
You’re looking for an investor to believe in you and your business. But this all starts with a belief in yourself and the potential of your startup.
This can serve as a great connection point between the two of you, as the investor can be transported back to their own early days in the business world.
You’ll want to also highlight any challenges that you’ve faced and how you’ve overcome them. Doing this is demonstrating your dedication to your business and your belief in its potential to thrive.
Don’t underestimate how this can help you get investment funding.
Show What You Know
This isn’t just what do you know about your own business model, but also your awareness of the investor’s business background. You should know the market your business will be involved in and your competition. You should know how you will grow faster and stronger than those competitors.
It’s also worth knowing about the investor’s previous successful investments to show how your business can fit in with their current portfolio and massage their ego the tiniest bit.
You should also know your business inside and out. Any question the investor asks you, you should answer in depth. This should include startup costs, expected revenue, expected profits, expected customer base, and your vision for the company.
Knowing your figures will reassure the investors because they’re looking to make money after all. The more you know your figures like a mathematician, the more likely you’ll get investment funding.
Show Off Your Successes
Even if your startup is fresh and new, you’ll want to demonstrate the potential of success by emphasising previous successes.
It doesn’t need to be success with regards to profits, it could even be positive reviews from clients or a large social media following. Initial success usually translates to growth and financial returns, so investors will be impressed by this.
Don’t just toot your own horn, celebrate your colleagues. Whether you’re approaching the potential investor with a co-founder or an employee, tout what they’ve achieved and highlight their strengths and skills. This shows the investor that they’re investing in a stable team with a core of strong relationships.
The investor will be wary of disputes between co-founders, which often occur in startups. So it’s key you show your investor that this won’t happen in your business. If you can’t show this then you’ll always struggle to get investment funding.
Celebrate Your Uniqueness
The beauty of startups is that they usually spark off the newest trends through the innovative use of technology and new marketing tools.
Celebrate this and show your investor that if they get involved, they’ll be responsible for building the next new trend. The most culturally significant businesses of today, whether it’s Facebook, Tinder, or Google, all started out as startups.
If you’re approaching a seasoned investor, chances are they’ll be hearing about new startups daily. In this instance, it’s crucial to show why yours stands out among others in your market and outside your market.
Read this article by Mark Evans at Forbes if you need a little more help with this.
Have A Business Plan
You might be the most passionate advocate for your business, but without a business plan your startup will look amateur and lack credibility.
There’s no set structure for a business plan, but you should set out your company’s goals, target market, projected profits, and costs clearly in a way that can be distributed to all potential investors. They might forget your pitch, but they’ll have something to take away with them to refresh their memories.
Make A Good Impression
Knowing your business inside out is vital, but so is selling your business. Look smart and in line with your business idea and portray your confidence in the brand and your passion to make it a success. This commitment will inspire the investors to feel the same and to want a slice of the action.
Make sure you have your pitch well rehearsed, but make sure it flows naturally to stay personable and relaxed (although it’s normal to feel nervous).
You want the investor to feel secure in giving you their money. They’ll feel confident doing this if you seem confident in your brand or product and in yourself as a founder/employee.
Here are a few more important tips for making a good impression by Jacqueline Zenn from HubSpot.
Don’t ever underestimate the power of a good impression to get investment funding.
How To Get Investment Funding: Final Words
Want some more personal tips to get investment funding?
Then read this article by Sarah Kimmorley that details 16 experiences of startup founders looking to get investment funding.
If you’re looking for customised legal advice then speak with one of our startup legal experts.