At some point in your business process, you will probably begin to approach venture capital firms. These people act as business partners and invest in your business in the hope of receiving substantial returns as you become more successful.
All too often, however, too hurried entrepreneurs rush to hold meetings with venture capitalists, unaware of what these potential investors will ask and expect. While there are some variations, most venture capitalists want to be assured that many things exist.
A large market for your product or service
One thing that is common among venture capitalists is that they want to be assured that people will really want the product or service you are offering. Remember, your success and the profits made by venture capital are linked.
You must be able to demonstrate that your target audience is ready and that you are waiting for what you are able to provide. It's even better if you have already made a difference in the market by arousing people's interest for your brand, your product or your service.
A real passion for what you sell
Think about the last time you spoke to a friend or relative who was extremely enthusiastic about a new TV show or a new restaurant. Chances are, after talking to the person, you were strongly in agreement to want to tune into the program or make a reservation for dinner at the new location.
Having an idea to present to the entrepreneur is crucial, but it is also essential to show that you are really excited by what you are launching and believe in its future success. It may be useful to engage in product demonstrations of clever product launches and marketing materials, but if investors do not see that you are ready to support the product, they will probably not want to support it either.
Venture capitalists also want to see evidence that you are doing things differently from other companies and solo entrepreneurs already on the market. You can show it in a number of ways, including drawing attention to the fact that the price of your product is below the standard (which makes it attractive and at a discounted price) or more (which leads to people to consider this product as a high-end audience).
You could also discuss how your product fits into a niche market and is completely different from what is currently available. Sometimes the uniqueness factor is how you make the product or the supplies that are used in it. Maybe your manufacturing process is up to five times more effective than existing methods or you use unusual materials, such as a durable material that is good for the planet and that offers excellent durability.
Keep in mind that it is not necessary to have one thing that sets you apart from others. In fact, the more differentiators you have, the better.
When presenting to a venture capitalist, be prepared to describe why the thing you are promoting can solve a clear and existing problem. In other words, articulate a well-thought-out answer to the question "Why is it important? This is great if you can talk about how you have personally struggled with something and you know that your product helps to solve the obstacle you have encountered.
A willingness to collaborate
Never forget that a venture capital is not just a source of funds. This person could be your business partner one day. It's a fact that Chris Sacca knew well when he founded Lowercase Capital.
By investing in a start-up project, Sacca wants to work side by side with a dedicated founding team that controls her own destiny. Although Sacca leads a very busy life, the people who have benefited from her advice say that Sacca has given them the means to succeed.
It is wrong to embark on a pitch session with the idea that a venture capitalist will remain firmly behind. Although you need to have a clear idea of where you want the company to come from, be sure to also be open to comments.
Sacca has years of work experience with many start-ups and he is always ready to share what he knows with people who want to hear him. The more you listen to people with experience, the easier it will be to apply what you learn to your own project.
These are not the only things that a venture capitalist wants to see when evaluating you during a pitch. However, they are some of the basic features. If you do not post them yet, it may not be the right time to start meeting future investors and show them that you can offer a successful business relationship.