How to pitch your business in the best possible way
- Open by stating your name, title/role, and company name (allows audience to get familiar with your voice before you start pitching)
- The Quick Hook: Grab the emotional attention of the audience within the first 30 seconds
- Definitely include these 5 elements: Problem – Solution – Market – Business – Team
- Pitch your vision, not just what you currently have or are
- Tell a story: Take your audience on an exciting upward journey with smooth transitions
- Reference things people know / understand, don’t make people think or question you
- Show real validators to prove your points, supported by strong emotional validators
- The Right Opportunity: Clearly convey a Big Market + Big Problem + The Right Solution
- The Right Team with these qualities: Integrity, Credibility, Passion, Experience, Knowledge, Skills, Leadership, Confidence, Commitment, Vision, Coachable, Doers
- One Joke: Make audience laugh at least once, but don’t do a comedy routine
- Don’t read slides or stare at projector screen! Look forward and connect with your audience
- Don’t speak too fast, people listen better when you speak slower and you sound wiser!
- Don’t use industry acronyms / terminology, or reference companies they won’t know
- Don’t show a video, do show a quick DEMO or screen shots (pictures fail less often than live demo/video)
Tough questions you should expect from investors/jury panels
- What’s the history of the company? When did you start operating?
- Why did you create this company?
- How did you meet/find your team members? Why are you / team right people to execute this business?
- Target market size? Minimum market penetration needed for success?
- What’s your traction? (MVP done?, user/revenue growth?, key milestones?)
- Why will you fail? Biggest challenges?
- Why will you succeed? Unfair / sustainable advantages?
- Are you a starter or finisher?
- Show me how you achieve the magic ratio: ARPU / Life-time Value > Cost to Acquire / Maintain a Customer
Capital Raising Questions:
- What’s the capital raising history of the company? How much / what terms?
- When did you start raising this round? What investors have committed?
- Have you invested any of your money?
- Are your advisors investing?
- What’s your valuation? Terms?
- How much cash is in the bank? What’s your monthly burn rate (expenses not covered by operating cash flow from revenues)? = Runway (Cash / Burn Rate)
- Use of proceeds and expected results/milestones?
#1: Who believes in you and how can I get in touch with them?
#2: What entrepreneurs do you admire and why?
#3: How do you track trends in your market?
#4: Can you tell me a story about a customer using your product?
#5: How do you know how much money you need and could you scale your business with less?
#6: How can I connect with 5 customers who have used your product or service?
#7: What will your market look like in five years as a result of using your product or service?
#8: What mistakes have you made thus far in this business and what have you learned?
#9: What if three or five years down the road we think you’re not the right person to continue running this company—how will you address that?
#10: Have you ever been fired from a job? Tell us about it.