Am I Ready To Present To Venture Capitalists?
Presenting to venture capitalists (VCs) can be scary the first time. Let’s be real, it is a bit nerve-racking every time, but if you are prepared then those nerves can’t control you. So how do you prepare? How do you know if you are ready to present to VCs? Follow these tips and you’ll be ready in no time.
Know Your Digits
If investors don’t have much time to look into your product/service, they can ask you two questions to know if you are legit or not: What customer problem are you solving? And Why are you the person to solve it? If you don’t know your basic metrics, your VC won’t care to know you.
Look and Act the Part
A young and fresh out of college entrepreneur may have the great idea, but investors usually feel more comfortable talking to a seasoned executive. Have a solid team that can address all of the potential concerns an investor could have.
Go Big or Go Home
One of the most consistent predictors of entrepreneurial success is “mass market.” Focus in on a market, but have a plan to grow. While you want to avoid reinventing the wheel and starting up a laundry detergent to race against Tide, when all else is equal, investors want to see massive potential for growth. Largest potential will come if you have a large potential market.
Customers Come First
Do whatever it takes to make your customers happy. That $20 deal might not seem big at the moment, but if your customer walks away happy, then they’ll come back happy and hopefully with friends. The idea of “money back guarantee” scares some people, but be willing to spend the money to make sure your customers are pleased.
Relationships and Greed
Negotiating can be uncomfortable, but it can also be done with mutual respect and both parties winning. Requesting more and more money shows investors that you aren’t stable in a business relationship. When entering into a business relationship, it is important to do a deal that is good for everyone. You may think that you are getting one heck of a bargain when you purchase shelf space for bottom dollar, but when that department store goes under there will be no shelves for your item to be sold on. Mutually beneficial relationships and agreements are always better in the long-run.
Make Your Own Success
You can’t expect customers to just walk in through your door opening day without any promotional work on your part. You have to fight for your place in the market. Sell your business everywhere you go, to everyone you talk to, and don’t be afraid to spend money on marketing.
Implement these tips and you’ll be ready to present to VCs in no time!