THE PITCH A blog about the art of persuasion

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

How to be prepared for your investor presentation

Tailor your pitch deck with this fact in mind: investors are not customers. Your goal is not to “sell them your product,” but to convince them that their money will grow because others will buy your product. For instance, if a startup is based on a new air freshener, your goal is not to get potential investors to buy one or two of your air fresheners. Your goal is to show them that many others will buy what you’re selling, and that the revenue-cost dynamics of those sales will be to the investors’ liking.

More to the point, your investor presentation has to justify the following claim: there will be substantial and durable profits from my business operations to reward investors who risk their money funding the business.

Find a Skeptical Audience for Practice
Investors will see and point out flaws in your start-up much quicker and harsher than friends. With classically misguided good intentions, people close to you are more likely to look over flaws and tell you that you’re doing great. If your start-up is not on a solid foundation, better to find out in practice than puff up with hollow confidence and fall on your face when the real show begins.

Prepare Questions on Your Product and Market
Know your product and market. Knowing the business product or service in-depth indicates to investors and customers that you respect their investments/purchases enough to put in time to know how the product or service might function or what problems may be encountered along the way.

Your investor pitch needs to be crafted to cover the following: How many similar products/services are there competing with you? What barriers to entry exist? Is there pent-up demand for what your start-up is offering? Have talking points ready about key components of your prospective business. For instance, if an investor challenges your assertion that there’s a need for your start-up’s services or products, is it possible for your business to create demand through advertising?

Balance IQ and EQ
Prepare to convince your investors that you understand the importance of relationships. Soft skills and relationships are easily outsourced or automated, making them very valuable. Keen investors will be aware of this truth about business. They will look for evidence that you, the entrepreneur, have the emotional intelligence to deal with people.

As always, practice makes perfect. Identify errors, fine-tune and try again.

Posted by Sol Marketing at 4:42 PM | Comments Off on How to be prepared for your investor presentation

Topics: Building a pitch deck, Investor Pitches, Telling the Story