The Business Investor Pitch

Do you make this mistake when you meet with a private or accredited investor?

by Mike Elia

"This one mistake can derail even the best business investor pitch."

This is an excerpt from the full-length manual, “Business Plan Secrets Revealed” by Mike Elia. This excerpt talks about making a face to face business investor pitch that can help you get the funding you need for your business venture. Learn more about this manual.

First, make no mistake: This is the investor’s meeting, not yours.

They’re interviewing you to see if you and your business are a fit with their investment criteria and risk level. You get to interview them only if they want to go forward with you.

Here are the investor’s objectives:

  1. Hear you articulate and explain the business and how it will make money

  2. Evaluate you and your team, how you interact with people, how you answer questions, and your body language when you answer them – in short, are you the type of person they want to partner with.

  3. If the investor likes what he or she sees and hears, then it’s time to discuss a “deal” or lay out a preliminary outline of the investment – size, percentages, general terms, and so on.

If you don’t accomplish the third objective of this meeting, there’s no interest. Move on to the next investor. Be nice and ask for comments, but the investor is not interested unless you can discuss a deal outline.

The Meeting Itself

As in any meeting, this one begins with an exchange of a few good-natured remarks. Then, the business investor will want to get on with the business at hand by asking an open-ended question like, “How can we help you?”

This is your cue to give your “elevator pitch.” It gives a quick overview of everything. Just modify your call to action, so that you turn the floor back over to the investor and let them ask their questions. You can do that by simply replacing the last phrase of your standard elevator pitch with a phrase like: “We are prepared to discuss the business in detail; however, if you could give me your perspective on the business plan, we can focus the meeting on what interests you.” Now here’s the key, if I may be blunt: shut up, listen, and provide concise, to-the-point answers to questions.

That’s it. That’s all you need to do, and you’ll have a great meeting.

I remember presenting a company that made a high-speed data connector with the magnetic components built right into the connector, rather than having to reside on the PC-board itself. This product freed several square inches of valuable real estate on the board which could be used for other applications or to reduce the size of the board. By simply displaying “before” and “after” boards, investors quickly saw the value in the product and the conversations quickly turned to how many, how much, and when.

The point is clear: your business investor pitch must quickly show the value you create, and remember that the investors are interested in how much they can make.

The meeting will normally run about two hours, but I’ve been in some pretty quick ones that lasted one hour and others that lasted five hours. It just depended on how much conversation occurred before the meeting, how familiar the investor was with our business, the nature of the deal, and what stage the business was in.

To build a case that separates your business venture from your competition, your business investor pitch must include a well written business plan, a sixty-second elevator pitch, and plenty of solid oral arguments. The full-length manual, “Business Plan Secrets Revealed” by Mike Elia, from which the above is excerpted, provides in-depth guidance from a seasoned dealmaker on preparing a business plan and making a business investor pitch that earns credibility for your business and wins the confidence of investors. Learn more about the manual.

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