Whether you’re an ambitious start-up founder or a savvy small business owner, it’s often the case that money is the only thing standing between you and your dreams. Fortunately, there are many would-be investors out there waiting to hitch their wagons to the next big idea.
The bad news is there’s lots of competition, and you really need to know how to make a great first impression.
So, what preparations should you make before you walk into your first meeting with potential backers? Here are four points to consider that will increase your likelihood of winning over investors and garnering more funding for your business.
Your pitch, or business plan, tells investors everything they need to know about your company in a sleek but highly informative overview. You need to make sure your business plan is clear, comprehensive, and polished.
An expert business plan writer can help you generate a pitch that will prove to investors that you’ve considered your business from every angle, including your target market, potential competition, and marketing strategies. Investors will be more likely to support a venture when presented with a logical, professional outline of how that business will run.
When you picture some of your favorite brands, what’s the first thing you think of? Probably their logo or marketing tagline. Your logo serves as your business’s profile photo; it should spark interest in your products or services and communicate the essence of your brand.
Studies have shown that certain types of logos can influence a potential backer’s decision to support a business venture, so it’s important to make sure you have a well-designed logo that accurately represents your company.
While having a detailed business plan and a dynamic logo at hand is important, it’s just as vital when interacting with investors to make sure your presence is engaging and confident.
When you meet with potential backers, you are acting as the face of your company; your audience will be more likely to support you and your venture if your demeanor inspires assurance and enthusiasm about your product.
Attending business networking events is also a great way to meet potential investors and practice your networking skills, so make sure to keep an eye out for conferences or meet-and-greets in your area relevant to your industry. You never know when you might run into someone looking for an exciting new venture to invest funds in.
A great way to engage potential investors before you even ask them for funding is to ask them for advice. According to the American Psychological Association, people are much more receptive to requests for help than we give them credit for. And most people enjoy offering their advice or wisdom to others.
By inviting the backer into your process and asking for their input, you’re demonstrating that you respect their authority, which makes them feel valuable. It also makes them feel more comfortable investing, knowing that they can express their opinion on business decisions down the road.
You’ll also start building an organic relationship with your investor from day one as opposed to asking for money and then working on connecting with them later.
It’s natural to be nervous before speaking with an investor. However, you must remember that you’re in control; you can influence a potential backer’s opinion on your business simply by seeming confident, practicing your pitch, and building a relationship with them.
Apply these tips to feel the self-assurance you need to turn potential investors into enthusiastic supporters of your business.