Shark Tank has brought the investment world to the public. It used to be that you had an idea and you worked your butt off to make it happen, and probably spent every penny you had. These days, everyone has an idea and everyone wants someone to fund it.
So if that’s you, what’s the best way attract investors to be interested in your idea?
This may be uncomfortable at first but your friends and family are close to you for a reason. They believe in you, and if you believe in an idea, they may believe in it too.
But don’t go into it with alot of unrealistic expectations. If your parents are going to write you a check for an idea, make sure you take it seriously. Most importantly, make sure they know exactly what the plan is and how you will use the funds to grow the business.
We all have certain skills and no one is good at everything. If you are creative, you may want a partner that is solely focus on number and business growth. Many successful entrepreneurs will tell you that taking on a partner was the best move they could have made. I mean, would Mr. Wonderful steer you wrong?
Writing a business plan is crucial to understanding the direction for yourself and the product. And most investors won’t be interested in anything until they see that you’ve got everything figured out. In the old days, these business plans were 50+ pages and no one actually read the whole thing. Just make sure you’ve covered the basics:
If you can provide these kinds of firm answers, then you know your business inside and out.
Don’t know any investors? That is the biggest hurdle for most entrepreneurs. But thing logically, do you know a friend of a friend or did you meet someone at a party once? Unless they are getting pitched everyday, most wealthy individuals do not hear about ground floor ideas all the time. And if you approach them earnestly with a respect of what you are asking, they will listen.
Importantly, the idea may not be for them, but often a % of peoples portfolio is in risky ventures that have potential for a big reward. It’s why people love to gamble.
The more difficult route is approaching investment companies, but they will dredge you through the mud and it will be very difficult to secure funding. Think smarter. Who is a partner of an investment company? Find them on Twitter and start to build a casual relationship and lead them to your idea. Then move to email and eventually phone calls.
Don’t forget, investors are people too (sort of).
Most people aren’t cut out for taking on investing. You have to be 100% certain that you are ready and confident in the direction of what you are pitching. Even for well connected people, it takes months to get that check. Be persistent! If that doesn’t come through, why would anyone give you their money?