Creating a successful pitch starts with a thorough business plan. From there it’s up to you to identify what makes your business valuable and worth investing in. You may have 5-pages of proven financial history and a deep analysis of how you stack up against the competition across multiple industries, but you simply can’t cover it all.
Because, when you’re pitching to angel investors and venture capitalists for the first time, you’ll often only have around 10-minutes to make your case. Here’s how to make that quick pitch successful.
#1. Create a presentation
First, take the time to put together your pitch deck. The goal is to create a deck that is easy for you to work off of and gets investors excited about your business.
Keeping that in mind, you should have a short version that you can speak to within 10-minutes as well as an extended version that includes everything you’d like to give potential investors access to.
#2. Practice your pitch
You need to practice your pitch. Not being able to quickly speak to each element of your business makes every other tip on this list virtually useless. Too many entrepreneurs think that just by knowing their business they can quickly and succinctly explain its value. And having a killer pitch deck with eye-popping visuals will be enough to fall back on. So they go into pitch meetings unprepared.
Instead of being able to say, “I only need 10 minutes of your time,” and actually only taking 10 minutes, you’ll soon find yourself rambling 20 minutes in, having only made it through slide 5. Take the time to practice, simplify your messaging, and only keep elements that build up your business. Leave everything else on the cutting room floor.
#3. Outline the problem with a story
Begin your pitch with a compelling story. It should address the problem you’re solving in the marketplace. This will engage your audience right out of the gate. And if you’ve done any testing try to include actual data here.
If you can relate your story to your audience, in this case, the investor, even better. What industries have they invested in previously? What pain points do their previous entrepreneurial endeavors have? Do some research about the investor, so you have a good sense of what they care about and can tailor your story to them.