Currently, we live in a time where anyone can create projects having only the idea and the list of needed skills. Everyone hopes to become the next Facebook or Google founder.
However, beginners are also more likely to encounter issues connected to securing venture capital from investors. That is one of the biggest problems they need to face while starting a new project.
This article will provide you with detailed information about the financial side of any startup, how to attract investors and convince them to invest in your project. As a result, the outside investment will certainly take your project to the next level and help you to grow your business. So, let’s get it started!
Where to find money and investors for a startup?
Some people might think it is too difficult to find outside funds. So they give up on developing their business idea and making it real. We must admit that it is not that easy, but it is still more than possible. We have prepared some useful tips that can help you to succeed in finding the investor for your startup.
Apply to investment funds and use personal connections
Having planned the idea of your startup, you can start searching for investments in the investment funds or ask the people you have already met. The key point of finding the investor is to get them interested in the idea of yours and to present a trustworthy plan which will lead to business growth. You should think about every important aspect before presenting it to the funds’ representatives or your potential investors.
Especially think about which service you will use to sell your product. For example, it could be gumroad or some other alternative (If it is online sales).
Nothing great can be done from a first try. Sometimes, it is worth sending the introductory letters for your project one by one instead of giving up after the first rejection. Besides, if you have not received a response to your letter, this does not mean a refusal. Until you speak to the person in person, you have not done your best. Remember the golden rule: “The door of opportunity is always open, but nobody bothers to push that door.”
Once you get yourself lit on fire, don’t push other people to make a decision, especially when it comes to communicating with investors. It takes some time to make an important decision. So having introduced your startup, let the potential investor think over all the pros and cons of entrusting the funds to your project. After this complicated and important process has been done, the person always comes out with the answer. Also, while hurrying up it is much easier to miss some important points that can cause a list of unexpected problems.
Look for outside sources of small business finance
The experts of Forbes claim that it is a great alternative to find investors who are already business owners, and want to start a new small business, purchase an existing small business or bring money into an existing small business to finance current or future business activity. These investors can analyze your project and not only provide you with the funds you need but also give you some good ideas for startup improvement. For instance, by sharing their personal experience and pointing out the pitfalls you might face in the future.
Investing in startups: How to argue?
Needless to say, when it comes to the startup presentation, you have not only to introduce the product you want to create and develop, but also to provide a list of answers for the investors’ questions. The discussion of the startup is a multistep process, which should have a brilliant structure to persuade the person in the final product’s success.
For this purpose, we have prepared the key points that should be included in your project for an astonishing presentation.
Here you should talk about the future potential of the project, the main problems it can solve, and all the benefits it can bring to the consumers. Usually, project makers use the help of professionals or project management platform services to write a perfect speech for a successful presentation. For instance, the specialists think that having prepared a brilliant structured presentation, you can easily make the exact impression on your audience. We also recommend you to include the main points of product peculiarities, talk about its strong sides and the problems that will be solved with it.
Talk about what the investor is interested in
This means that your presentation should introduce not only the product’s analysis but also the investor’s benefits from investing in the project. Make sure to include the approximate amount of revenue that you accept to generate at each stage of the project development. For instance, you can create a table of development for the product and future perspectives of it. With seeing the credible data of the brand growth, investors feel the confidence of its success.
Assemble a team that is ready to go
In addition, it would be nice to present the team, which is participating in the project development, so that it will be more convincing for the investor to analyze all the risks, and to be sure about the success of the startup. Furthermore, having a good team will also provide you with additional help in the project development as well as with the fresh ideas that will perfectly fit into it.
Choose an investor as a business partner
This advice will be definitely useful in case the potential investor has had the experience connected with the business or is the owner of it. That method will also provide you with additional help and consulting on how to optimize the product or correct some inaccuracies that appeared during the developing process.
Furthermore, it will make the investor feel more confident about the startup presented so it is much more likely to get a positive answer. Sometimes the investor can also add some fresh ideas to the brainstorming process so that to make the product unique and easy to use.
How to convince investors to invest in a startup?
Follow the 10/20/30 rule
Having listened to hundreds of ideas of those who hoped to get funding for their business ventures, former Apple-brand-evangelist-turned-venture-capitalist Guy Kawasaki has proposed his own 10/20/30 rule of PowerPoint. It’s quite simple: a PowerPoint presentation should have 10 slides, last no more than 20 minutes, and contain no font smaller than 30 points. So, in this case, it won’t be “crap” as he said before.
In his opinion, ten slides are the optimal number as no one can remember more than 10 concepts in the course of a business meeting. Typically, those 10 slides will identify the problem, present your solution, describe how to achieve it, who will do it, the timeline, and a summary.
Twenty minutes is the amount of time it should take. Ignore the fact that you have an hour for the presentation. Get it done in 20 minutes and you’ll have an extra 40 minutes for discussion.
Also, it really makes sense to use a visual medium like PowerPoint to present visual images and not the text of the presentation itself. So a thirty-point font would be the best choice.
Following this rule will help you to present the main idea of your project and leave enough time for the question-and-answer session.
Create at least 3 presentations
To make sure you have used all the potential and creativity for your presentation, we advise you to make 3 separate presentations using different styles and key points for each. Thus, you will be able to look at your project from different perspectives and choose the best one for the startup presentation. In addition, it will definitely provide you with some food for thought and might give the exact idea about what points you want to present and how to make it more attractive to the audience.
Also, it is important to be simple and specific, that is why we strongly recommend you to stick to the core message of your presentation and use visuals to illustrate key concepts and processes. Another crucial element of simplification is being specific. If you’re vague and foggy in your statements or descriptions or assignments, your investor is going to end up being vague and foggy, too.
Make a brief description of your idea that will interest your investor
To get investors interested in your idea, you should focus on their priorities. For that purpose, it is important to persuade them why they have to invest in your project and what benefits they will get as a result. By realizing the result of the action, the person becomes mentally ready to make the investments.
Another good piece of advice is to make a shortlist of the comments you would like to stress during the presentation. That will make your speech more powerful, reliable, and provide the investors with the right impression about you and your product.
You can use a mind mapping tool to create a mind map where you present your idea and responses to potential investors’ questions. By providing this information visually and supporting it with explanations, you will stand out in front of investors and convince them more easily.
Be natural and positive, speak calmly, and clearly
The key aspect of a successful presentation is to show your confidence and reliability via the character traits that can easily make a pleasant impression during and after the presentation. For instance, smiling exhibits confidence and enthusiasm to the audience and positive visualization makes the right impression about you as a person and the project you are presenting. When we imagine a positive outcome to a scenario in our mind, it’s more likely to play out the way we envision, and that’s the exact thing we need to succeed.
In addition, we recommend chatting with potential investors before your presentation and adding some questions during the presentation in order to get them involved. Clear and brilliant, the oratory art will put your presentation to the next level.
Don’t be afraid to ask friends and acquaintances for advice
Sometimes, when your mind’s going blank, the best thing which can really help you is just an outside perspective. For this purpose, you should ask your friends and acquaintances for a piece of advice about the product as well as its presentation. A simple 10-minute brainstorming can really bring a variety of ideas for product improvement.
Another good option is to get the comment on the presentation you have made, what should be added, and which points would be better omitted.
As you see, the process of searching for an investor for a startup is not as difficult as many people think. To find the investor, you can apply to the investment funds, use personal connections, or look for small business finances. Often it may take a lot of time and patience to find the funds, so be patient. Make a strong and convincing presentation, which includes the introductory word, the main information about the product, and the list of benefits it can bring to the investor.
To make the speech more persuasive, you can also offer the investor to become a business partner of your startup and present the team of developers that will help you to complete the project. Another good piece of advice is to follow the 10/20/30 rule for presenting the product itself and leave some time for the question-and-answer session. For better practice, you should make at least 3 different examples of presenting your product from different aspects, after which choose the most optimal for presenting it to the audience.
Also, you should remember that the communication between you and the potential investor is one of the main points of your future cooperation. For introducing yourself as a person, you should be natural and positive while presenting, speak calmly, and clearly. This will make the right impression about you and your product.
All in all, we hope this plan has shed some light on how to make the project commercially attractive to find the investor for your startup.