Asking for funding and meeting with investors can be a pretty standard part of many business owners’ and entrepreneurs’ lives.
When it’s time for you to go to would-be investors, despite the necessity of it, that doesn’t make it any less anxiety producing for even the most seasoned professionals.
It’s important that you’re able to inspire a sense of trust and confidence in the people that will potentially be giving you money to bring your ideas to life.
So how do you do that? How do you move beyond simply seeming like you’re pitching an idea to a point where you’re building a sense of confidence that leads to funding?
Do Your Research
Do you have images in your head where the energetic entrepreneur goes into a meeting with potential investors and wows them without preparing? If so, it’s probably not going to happen.
Potential investors are like your customers. You need to research them, and look at their past investments and see where your business has similarities to those successful endeavors they’ve entered into.
You need to show your investors not only that you’re prepared to lead a business, but that you can be a great fit for their needs.
Let Your Personality Show Through
Yes, many of your investors may be wanting to see the numbers and what can clearly be put on paper, and even if that’s all they think they’re interested in, you’re ultimately selling yourself.
As an entrepreneur yes, you need to have the data and facts, but you also need to be able to sell yourself effectively.
Don’t be afraid to show what makes you different, and your passion and enthusiasm, as long as it’s genuine.
Define and Highlight Your Company Values
People are going to be more inclined to invest where they feel like the company is a reflection of what they believe in. Not only do you need to have your business values defined before you meet with investors, but you need to be able to communicate them.
When there’s a sense of coming together over values and vision, it can then lead not only to more willing investors but often a more successful business.
According to Firmex.com in their Mid-Market M&A Report, it’s extremely difficult for any deals to get done in the current climate.
That’s why it makes it more important than ever to stand out, and one way to do that is to emphasize things you have that no one else can offer, such as your core values.
Even if you think fudging the facts a bit can land you investors initially, it’s not going to pay off in the long run.
It’s also not very likely to pay off in the short-term either, because if you’re tapping people to be investors for your business, they’ve probably already achieved some level of success.
That tends to come with the ability to feel individuals and situations out for what they really are.
Give your potential investors all of the information they need to know and do so in a way that’s timely and accurate.
My Final Thoughts
As a final concluding note, the more information you’re giving, not only the more transparency you’re going to create but it’s going to alleviate a lot of the uncertainty for the investor, and uncertainty can be one of the biggest roadblocks to convincing investors and getting the funding.
What are you doing to inspire trust in your potential investors? I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas on this.