5 Expert Tips to Nail your Startup Pitch
Global startup communities and out-of-this-world valuations have been all the buzz over the last several years. We take a look at five startup pitch tips that are must-haves in that all important presentation to prospective investors.
BE SUCCINCT & GET TO THE POINT, FAST!
Investors go through a multitude of hopefuls looking for their big break in funding. Their time literally means money. Your pitch should encapsulate the essence of your business in the first few slides of your presentation. There should not be too many bells and whistles attached to it. Leave the fluff behind – always ask yourself if your presentation has that x-factor that your audience will pay attention to. Remember, they listen to literally hundreds of pitches and need to be wowed. Some say that even if you are given 45 minutes, your make or break time is in the first few minutes.
SOLVE A PROBLEM
Most sound business ideas spring from simple enough solutions to complex issues. Uber did that and so did Airbnb. Make sure that you articulate the gap(s) in the market clearly and how you intend to solve them. It’s best to address this at the beginning of the pitch so that they are aware of your main mission from the get-go.
PREPARE FOR QUESTIONS
Prospective investors will ask questions – especially if they like your idea. Always be cognizant of the fact that they are also thinking of their bottom line and if their investment will bring them profits. Prepare for questions with information on your competitors. How long can they expect to witness returns on investments? How do you plan to scale the business? What is your exit strategy? This information ties in with providing them with detailed financials so they know you can back-up your claims.
KNOW THAT IT’S AS MUCH ABOUT YOU AS IT’S ABOUT THE IDEA
This is especially true in the Venture Capital sphere where investors want to know more about both you and your team before they commit. You need to exhibit certain levels of enthusiasm and drive for them to believe in you. They don’t have the time to fully run your business while you take a back seat. It’s a partnership so make your commitment clear. Show that you possess the follow-through necessary to make things work.
This is one point that entrepreneurs rarely consider straight off the bat. Although startups have several things to factor in when they reach their pitch stage, investors do consider if the business idea has intellectual property protection in the forms of patents, trademarks or copyrights. Although not always affordable until you obtain funding, having an idea that is protected will boost confidence among investors dramatically, eliminating the possibility of legal roadblocks down the road. At the very least, do your research and make sure that the idea is either original or takes on a novel (and practical) spin on an existent one.
And there we have it, although not an exhaustive checklist, these are some of the main points to incorporate into your next pitch for maximum effect. Combine these with a revolutionary idea and a bucketful of confidence and nail that pitch!
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