Preparing For A Venture Pitch: What Investors Want To See
By: Kayla Stevens 02/11/2015
For being such a common part of entrepreneurship, presenting a pitch can be unbelievably daunting. There are plenty of factors that can go wrong - from poor vocation to a poor knowledge of your market, a promising pitch can quickly turn into a nasty mess. However, with proper preparation, presenting a venture pitch can easily transform into an exciting and promising prospect.
It all begins with a thorough understanding of what you want to pitch. Know your idea inside and out before meeting with potential investors. Ask yourself - why does my product or service warrant funding? Forbes points out that investors hear countless pitches. Why should they spend any time hearing you out? Distinguish yourself from other entrepreneurs by ensuring that this question has a clear and concise answer. Be sure to keep the future in mind, too. Investor Hunter Walk notes that most startup presentations lack this foresight. Similarly, understand the market in which your startup will be occupying. Knowing where you will fit in will exude experience and knowledge, both of which will certainly impress.
Of course, it should also go without saying that appearance and delivery are important as well. All aspects of your pitch should be examined thoroughly, and your approach should be confident and calm without bordering on arrogant. Investors can tell the difference, and they will not be afraid to act accordingly. Use this to your advantage by investing time into pitch delivery. “Practice makes perfect” may sound like a dated adage, but it is certainly relevant to proper presentation.
Perhaps the most important factor is to know your audience. Understanding their position and what they want to see is crucial. Briefly imagine that you are in their shoes. What would you want to see in a pitch? What would turn you away from an idea? Compare your product to their values - do they align? Keep these thoughts in mind during preparation and address them head-on. Investors want assurance that they will make a profit, so demonstrate clear consumer understanding. You can be sure that they will be actively seeking flaws as well as assets, so be sure to eliminate any issues during preparation.
The power dynamic between you and the investor can certainly be daunting, but it can be leveraged in your favor. Be confident in your idea, be aware of the market in which it will be presented, and appreciate the investor-entrepreneur relationship. Doing so will satisfy the goal of leaving a memorable impact upon your audience. Keep these tips in mind to bolster your pitch from good to great. Good luck!