In last week’s blog, we looked at steps you should take to check if your business idea is ready to pitch to an investor. In this blog, we’ll look at tips for the pitch to help you make it as good as possible. After all, an investor will probably only give you one shot to make your pitch, so it’s got to be right. Here are our tips.
1. Write a Business Plan
Writing a business plan is not the same as writing a pitch to an investor, although the investor will probably want to see the plan if they are interested in the pitch. The process of writing a business plan, however, will help you focus and sharpen the business idea as well as giving you a deeper understanding of the business.
It will also give you the opportunity to do some financial projections. Make sure those projections are ambitious while being realistic.
2. Prepare Yourself
Always remember the investor is investing in you as much as they are investing in your business. You should, therefore, spend time preparing yourself for the pitch. Make sure you know it word-for-word and practice it over and over again. When you think you’ve practised enough, practise again.
Also, make sure you are enthusiastic, positive, and ambitious. This will help you make the investor believe in you as well as the business.
3. Focus on the Essentials
A business pitch to an investor is short so you should focus on being able to clearly explain the business in less than five minutes. If you can’t, your business is too complicated, or your pitch needs refinement.
You can refine the pitch by only focussing on the essentials. After all, in the pitch, the investor is not going to be interested in detail. Keep to the important points, particularly in relation to what the business does and why customers will be interested in buying.
4. Know Your Business
Make sure you know the business inside-out. The process of writing your business plan and your pitch will help with this, but you should take extra time to ensure you really know the business. This will help you answer any questions thrown at you and will give the investor confidence in your abilities.
The things you should know about your business include:
- Target audience
- Customer acquisition strategy
- Revenue streams
- Achievable revenue
- Profit margins and projected yearly profits
- Your personal background and knowledge of the market
5. Explain What’s in It for the Investor
Don’t forget to think about the investor’s perspective when preparing your business pitch. After all, they will be interested in the idea if they like it, but they will be more interested in what’s in it for them. So, explain the returns you expect to achieve and outline, where necessary, potential exit strategies.
6. Ensure High-Quality Design
Most investors sit through a lot of business pitches, so you need to make sure yours is at least comparable visually to others the investor has seen. This usually means hiring a designer to make the pitch materials look professional.
Finally, here’s a bonus tip – don’t take rejection personally. Rejection is part of business and everyone, including the most successful entrepreneurs in the world, has experienced it. Use rejections to learn and improve for the next time.
To get more help with your business, including start-up businesses, please contact a member of the Gilroy Gannon team.