Delivering a pitch to potential investors is one of the challenges you are going to make as an entrepreneur. Famously, Guy Kawasaki, a venture capitalist, says that getting investors interested in your pitch is a lot like online dating. In a small amount of time, investors are going to make an instant decision about your pitch. And just like online dating, you will either be categorised as, in Kawasaki’s words, “hot or not.”
So here are some tips to help you get those investors on-board with your vision.
Research your panelists
You are in luck because LinkedIn is such a helpful way to get to know who your panel is going to be. It is important that you understand who you are going to pitch to. Knowing what interests your audience, their background, and the nature of their work is going to help you with the content of your pitch.
Appeal to those interests, insert information that is related to their work, and at the same time, make sure your investors come from your industry or is at least analogous to it.
Avoid being too verbose
The adage “less is more” definitely applies here. After researching your panelists, try to preempt what their questions are going to be. For instance, if the panel is in the marketing or tech industry, create content that features your company’s marketing strategies, and complete information on your product.
However, you have to strike a balance between avoiding jargon and not oversimplifying your presentation. For instance, if you have to explain domain name registration to one of the bigwigs of marketing, then you are presuming they do not know the intricacies of digital marketing. On the other hand, if you keep spouting words like hyperlocal or latent semantic indexing without a short explanation, the investors will start ignoring you because they cannot understand its relevance to your pitch.
Highlight your brand’s story
Keep yourself from talking about your revolutionary idea or your paradigm-shifting thought. Chances are, your panelists have already heard the same thing from all the other companies pitching to them. Tell them why they should care about you beyond the product you are selling. This is a chance for you to tell them how you have conceptualised the company, how it all started, the steps you have already taken to improve, and what you are planning for its future.
Your brand’s story is a compelling part of your pitch because it tells your investors if you have a vision for its success in five or ten years’ time. It shows them that you have the drive and motivation to turn it into big business, and that you are willing to learn from them.
Limit presentation slides
For this, Guy Kawasaki recommends the 10/20/30 rule. This means limiting the number of slides to 10, the whole to 20 minutes, and then use a font size of 30 points. You can probably still change the font size a bit, depending on who you are talking to. Kawasaki notes, “A very good calculation for your font size is figure out who the oldest person is in the audience, and then divide his or her age by 2.”
So if you are gearing up for your next investor’s meeting, then make sure you follow these tips for a more effective pitch.