Business investors can be the lifeblood of any business. If you need financial investment to save or grow your business and you don’t want to borrow from a traditional lender. Or, perhaps you want to find an investor who can also help you by offering business advice on top of the financial investment, then you will need to work out how to pitch to them. Simply asking for money isn’t going to get you very far. They will need to know they’re making a good investment – it is their money, after all.
Although you will be talking about your business, and it is your business that investors will be interested in, it is important for you to know yourself well before you enter into a pitch. By knowing exactly why you started the business and what you want from it, as well as what you are willing to do to make it work for you and where you are heading, you will be better placed to answer the questions that an investor will ask you, and to make an impassioned pitch.
One way that you can ensure you know more about yourself is to learn how to write a CV and create one for yourself to see what you’ve achieved prior to and since starting your business. Although you aren’t applying for a job, finding an investor is similar to being hired and interviewed. Your resume will give you a lot of information and remind you of why you are doing this in the first place. It gives you the chance to lay out your experience over the last few years as well as any qualifications that you might have forgotten about which could help you in securing this investment.
Creating a generalized pitch isn’t going to work for every potential investor. In fact, it is far better to research each investor you want to speak to carefully beforehand and make your pitch reflect that knowledge. This will impress the investor more and make them more receptive to what you want to say, and it proves that you have taken the time to get to know more about them. By doing this they might reciprocate and take the time to get to know more about you.
Research will also help in the initial stages. It will show you who the best people are to invest with, and you can narrow down your list of those you want to speak to. Always start with your preferred investor first rather than leaving them to the end of the list. If they say yes, you won’t have to worry about the others, and if they say no, you can move on to the next best investor for you.
A long, meandering pitch is not going to give you the best chance of securing investment. It’s good to add some background to what you are saying and not to make it all about the numbers, but you should always keep it simple and short. Some investors will even give you a time limit when it comes to a pitch, but if there is no limit that doesn’t mean you can talk endlessly, no matter how passionate you may be about what you are saying.
It’s best to create a short pitch with a: