You have a really ground breaking idea which is worth billion dollars.You are going to make the lives of many people easy with your your business. WOW! That’s cool. What next? You need to sell your idea. Right?
You start looking to VCs or angels for the capital to take your start-up to the next level.Remember, Your investor is your first big customer! Many startups fail here because of a crappy pitch. That sounds pompous, arrogant,egotistical, etc. of course. But it’s the truth.Investors have seen lot of pitches,So you have to stand out.You shouldn’t give him a chance to ask “Tell me what you do again. I am unable to get a clear picture.”
So here are some of the few things I feel that might be helpful to you while preparing a pitch.
1)Elevator Pitch : Make it simple,clear memorable and nail it.Focus more on the Five W’s.
“ What does your company do? Whom does your company do it for? Why do they care? Why is your company different? What is your company? “
So don’t make it cluttered by putting in more of information.Create a feeling of wanting to know more.
2)Problem : Come straight to the point.This slide is NOT about how your startup works. Many of them spend too much time on how their product works instead of explaining the problem. “People buy solutions to problems” Remember. As investors say “Don’t tell me about how your lawn fertilizer works. Tell me about my lawn.”
Also , Bigger the pain the better!
3)Solution : Explain how your product creates value for your customers.Tell them how your product is gonna make customers happy and does it different from others!
Make sure that there is a Problem- Product fit. Yes, this is really important.
4)Demo : Investors have a strong belief that “ the better the product the less time it takes to demo” which is true. Keep it crisp. Don’t try to explain all the small features instead focus on the important ones.
Focus on the design as well. It matters. Trust me.
Don’t try to introduce video clips here. They are distracting.
5)Market : Measure your market. Show them the figures.
Do some surveys which would validate the figures.
Finally, Bigger the market the better.
6)Business Model : The most interesting part for everyone and mainly for the investors.Be crystal clear on how you are going to make money.
Focus on Revenue streams and the cash flow.
Describe 1-3 revenue sources.
7)Competition : Tell them what advantage you have over thee others.Be it the technology, marketing channel or any other.
Prove them!Explain them the Pro’s you have over the existing products in the market.
Show you are better or at least different.
8)Marketing Plan : Show them various marketing channels through which you are going to pull in your customers. Use a push-pull strategy.
Explain your unique strategy/Partnerships.
Focus on Volume, Cost and Conversion.
9)Team : Investors are really particular about your team. They want to know your team , Not to take you out for dinner. Tell them Names, Expertise, What makes you a great team.
An ideal startup team consists of a Hustler,Hipster and a Hacker.
Hustlers sell, Hipsters design and Hackers code.
10)Money : Explain them what have you achieved so far in terms of Revenue , Customers and testimonials/feedback.
Focus more on what you’ve done till now rather than what you are going to do.
Finally the ask!
How much do you want to raise? How much have you raised? How are you gonna spend it?
Last but not the least Be Original. Be you.