June 7, 2006

Pitching like a Pro

A perfect pitch can be the lynchpin in your quest for funding. It plays a huge role in whether you will receive additional contact/feedback from an investor, so FundingUniverse.com has come up with Three C’s of Effective Pitching. If every part of your pitch doesn’t fit the three C’s, a potential investor may pass you by. The three C’s are:

Clear

Keep your pitch free from distractions. Your ability to clearly present your business idea allows investors to focus on your plan rather than trying to understand something that was ambiguous. To present your pitch clearly you should:

  • Be prepared. Bring your own power cords, projector, a working prototype of your product, and anything else you need to make an impression.
  • Videotape your pitch. Watch yourself with a critical eye. Have friends watch it with a critical eye. Make the improvements. Have more friends watch it. Make improvements. Have more friends watch it. Improve. You get the picture.
  • Be honest about weaknesses, but positive about your potential. No enterprise is flawless, and no repudiated angel will expect it to be.

Captivating

A little excitement can gain the attention of potential investors. Angels don’t consider pitches that bore them. This doesn’t mean you should turn your pitch into a circus, but the following rules can help you get your point across:

  • Research your audience and their concerns. What factors will help determine how they will respond to your pitch? What’s their age, their gender, their socio-economic background? What have they invested in before and what are their interests now?
  • Take notes while the other members of your team are presenting. Then use your notes to rewrite your pitch later.
  • Be observant and responsive the reactions (verbal and non-verbal) of your audience.
  • Make vocal fillers (um, eh, like, etc.) your number one public enemy.

Concise

An effective pitch contains no fluff. The pitch options presented above don’t leave any room for the non-essentials. Extremely impressive pitches leave the investor time to question you thoroughly, assess your potential, and grab a donut.

At the very least your pitch should include the following:

  • Company’s name
  • Business Cards
  • Product/service
  • Current success
  • Market opportunity
  • Any other genius your company has to offer (i.e. a management team/advisory board, a great network, a great location, etc.)

For additional pitching tips visit FundingUniversity.




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