Have you ever tuned in to the business reality show Shark Tank where people pitch ideas to potential investors? For people who are familiar with this hit tv show, you know it’s more or less like a real shark tank where you survive or get eaten.
Shark Tank is a platform that gives promising entrepreneurs the chance to pitch their ideas to a panel of five investors who have built fortunes in different industries. The people who make the best pitches get their ideas funded while the ideas that are not well explained, no matter how good they seem are turned down.
For this reason, it is imperative that you learn the necessary skills to deliver an engaging pitch in a limited time because let’s face it, long narratives bore people quickly.
This week, Jules Schroeder had the chance to sit down with Oren Klaff and pick his brain over pertinent issues when it comes to getting people to invest in your idea or company. Author, keynote speaker, entrepreneur, and investment banker are, among the many hats that he wears. He is also one of the world’s leading experts on sales, raising capital, and negotiations. His book, Pitch Anything, has become a required reading throughout Silicon Valley and has sold over a million copies. Anything he touches turns to gold. For this reason, it was only necessary to have him share with us the secret to having an investor not only say “yes” to your idea but to actually pump money into it.
Oren shares with us his journey to success and practical tips on how to deliver a pitch that moves an investor to channel money to bring an idea into reality.
It is crucial that you value yourself and everything that you bring to the table. Oren says, “When someone detects that you’re adapting to who they need you to be, you upset them.” You cannot afford to say yes to everything that a potential investor or client says to you just to please them. Investors will not trust you with their money the moment you let outsiders dictate what you should or should not do. They might conclude that you do not know what you want because you are so easily swayable. When you have your own values, you become more compelling. That is what makes you charismatic.
You must understand the market that you want to tap into. Ask relevant questions and find answers first before going to an investor. These are some of the relevant questions that Oren suggests you look into;
How is the market changing? What is the buying behavior for the market? How are you going to promote the product or service? What geography are you targeting? What does your business model look like?
People love the idea of something new but the concept must still be embedded into something that has been in existence for long. You must, therefore, observe trends in the market to learn the graph and know how your new idea fits into the usual way of getting things done.
It is difficult to sell something that will have a very limited effect on the industry. You need to come up with something that will still radically change people’s lives two to three years from now. Investors see the essence of putting their money into an idea or business that creates massive change and is equally long-lasting.
You must point out ways in which your idea will alter the industry such that it will be completely different in a few years to come. Avoid unnecessary details about how your product is not like the others. Almost everything that exists in the world today has been done before. Hence, you must just find a way to communicate how your idea will change and benefit what is already in existence in the world.
An investor will expect you to make a substantial contribution to your business. If you have spent very little in ensuring the visibility or running of your business it shows that you are not serious about it. If you cannot take your own company seriously, how can someone else?
Oren Klaff’s greatest point is that the same effort that goes into coming up with a business idea should also go into seeking investment. You may have one of the best ideas in the world, but the way you deliver your idea will determine whether you sink or swim.
Double Giveaway! if you register at orenklaff.com you could win a fully-funded trip to Southern California where you will have Oren as your city guide and business consultant.
If you are interested in connecting with Oren, you can reach out through his website.