How to charm investors | Предприниматель

How to charm investors

Four tips for start-up in preparation for a meeting with an investor.

Hundreds of innovative ideas without interest claim for funding – but only few manage to achieve the favor of investors. Just how competitive will your project depends on many factors: the viability and timeliness idea elaboration of business plan, professional team … But at the stage of looking for potential investors are primarily tied to the strategy of behavior, which adheres to the leader. What he has to do in order to improve the chances of winning this contest?

Learn to “sell” yourself

Leader – a person of the company, in the literal and figurative sense. This is why contacts with investors can not be transferred to another company or employed professionals – even if you think he will cope better. Imagine that you need to take a picture on the passport and you’re considering himself nefotogenichnym, sending in his place someone prettier …

By investing in your startup, an investor in fact invested in you, and what kind of impression you will make it, depends largely on the further development of relations. Your charisma and energy, your professionalism and pragmatism, your “glowing eyes” and a positive attitude – is that first of all see (and evaluate) the prospective investor. Sees – and draws conclusions. Including the viability of your idea.

Tip: You will have to master the “related occupations” – attracting investment. Before you start looking for an investor to study theoretical foundations, read the articles of specialists – for example, the blog of Guy Kawasaki (, one of the most famous in the world of venture capitalists who specialize in high-tech start-ups. What interests of investors? On what projects they “peck”? By what criteria to assess the prospects of ideas and professionalism of the team? They want to get? What can you do to interest them? Find the answers to these questions – and only then go to practice. This is the case when the effective “day to lose, and then for five minutes to reach.”

Not be placed on one horse

So, you feel ready to negotiate – and you even have an eye on the potential investor that you think would be interested in your business. Do not stop there, even if you think practically win-win deal. Money in the world is much more than good ideas. If your idea is really good, maybe there will be people who will offer financing on more favorable terms for you? Best for you will be in parallel negotiations with several investors or venture capital funds.

Tip: Make a list of potential investors. And collect about each of them as much information – all that you can. Do not limit yourself to the information of interest to you directly (goodwill, investment portfolio, especially projects in which money is invested). Addiction to the cinema or literature, car, a passion for Italian and Thai cuisine … Any detail can ever “shoot” and give you a general topic of conversation.

Be ready for a long distance

Yes, of course, it may happen that a prospective investor immediately lights up the idea of ??cooperation. But the kind of love at first sight still rare. But the probability that the investor will have for a long time to run, to draw attention to the person, is quite high. You should not cross out the name of “forward-looking list” just because people did not express interest in your project even outright rejection is not always the final and irrevocable. Remember that the search for investment – it’s not a sprint, where everything depends on the speed dash and the marathon, where the gap in the first phase has nothing to say – the winner is not the one who ran faster, and the one who is able to run for a long time, count load and plan their actions on a sufficiently long period of time.

When one of the leaders of our company has attracted investments in the business, one American investor has refused to even meet with him, saying it simply, “Your business is not interesting to me, I never will put money into it.” 99% out of a hundred after that would put the cross on this option. But what this man did? They studied all the posts written by an investor in the social networks of vocational subjects, commented on them, expressing their opinions, called on the discussion … He was very persistent, and as a result of his energy to melt the ice: it has made the meeting, and after it – and investment.

Tip: Regularly communicate with potential investors, tell them about their success, try to be interested in all possible ways. Trust, interest – that’s the foundation of your future cooperation. Think strategically and build long-term relationships with your potential partners. And of course, do not be discouraged if investors are not lining up after the first meeting.

Brevity – the soul of success

And now you get to the stage of presentation. For you, this event, but for investors so far. Any company engaged in the financing of start-ups, monthly treats dozens or even hundreds of applications, and one presentation to a venture investor – is routine. And it can get bogged down even a well-researched project if you are not able to attract and keep the attention of your listeners.

Tip: Be concise. If you manage to fit the most important in the 10 slides and 20 minutes – a potential investor, several times a week listening to a lecture hour, you will be thankful at least for that time you saved it. This way, you are already getting a head start. And the interesting part, if necessary you can always specify.
Prepare a shock start. Do you have it on for about five minutes. If during this time you will not have time to catch, to interest the listener’s attention begins to dissipate. One of the practical ways to impress the audience win-win – it figures: the potential size of the market in money, the number of users, data from studies demonstrating the promising segment in which you are going to work, the absolute and relative performance, current and potential speakers. Numbers should not be much. One, two, maximum three – but very tangible indicator.

Speak only about what you can explain and argue. It does not promise the impossible. The best option – to highlight one of the key performance indicators and guarantee results. In this case, you should always be prepared to explain how you will anticipate the potential risks (and for this you need to anticipate what questions you can ask in principle).

And finally, do not be boring. Be emotions, add a drive, arrange a presentation of your little show. Get a smile. And not for a moment lose optimism and belief in his own idea, otherwise you probably will not even be able to convince someone to invest money in it.

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