Tips for Perfecting your Startup Pitch
How to present a pitch that no investor can refuse.
Tip #1: Know your audience.
Do your research about the potential investors. Focus on what projects the investors have funded-focus on the most recent. Does your idea/concepts ‘fit’ what has interested the investors in the past? Understand which investments were successful. Does your pitch have similar characteristics and structure? Choose wisely, search for investors that match your company/project’s philosophy. Remember, you are also looking for partner(s) to join in your hard work to make both of you successful. Knowing your audience can help you prepare your pitch.
Tip #2: Follow the Ten Minute Rule.
Time is valuable, especially in the business world. The shorter the pitch the more effective it will be. For initial pitches, most resources suggest ten minutes is maximum to broadly define your company and articulate your idea(s). Segment your pitch into 4 key points, allowing 2 minutes for each key point, then 2 minutes for questions and answers.
Tip #3: Always include the three essential explanations.
Prepare to explain your company in a concise manner will leave the investor with a clear understanding of the entire project.
(a.)Explain what your service or product is. Visual props are preferred and provides more information. Have the actual concept/product or picture available. Do not go into too much detail, be short and to the point. Remember, investors are focusing on financial return and to a lesser extent the concept/product.
(b.)Explain your target demographic. When explaining your target demographic, provide only essential data and visual aids that clearly explain the concept/product when.
(c.)Explain your revenue model. This is a critical explanation for any pitch, especially for a startup. Have a clear description of what the projected return on the investment would look like. Be ready for questions regarding your revenue model.
Tip #4: Perfect your presentation.
How you present is as important as what you present. You are auditioning your ideas. Be mindful of non-verbal communication such as facial expressions and body language. Be confident in yourself and product. Dress professionally, be enthusiastic, and be respectful of your audience’s knowledge and time.
Tip #5: Practice.
Practicing your pitch is key to a successful pitch. Practice your timing, your body language, using visual aids and taking questions. Prepare answers to commonly asked questions. Repetition reduces anxieties with the actual presentation and allows the audience to focus on your pitch. Each time you practice you will gain confidence in your pitch and your abilities as an entrepreneur.
Are you ready to pitch?!
Pitching your innovative ideas can be exciting. Each pitch can be a defining moment in your future and mastering that perfect pitch is critical. Hopefully, these few tips will make the investors excited for your ideas, your company and YOU. So good luck and knock your pitch out of the park!