Budding entrepreneurs: Here’s how to ace that business pitch
For those who watched the first season of Angel’s Gate, you’ll know that being an entrepreneur pitching business ideas, pleading for angel investors to give you that much-needed funding isn’t easy. And sometimes, downright humiliating when the contestant was caught off guard or unprepared for the questions the four judges threw at them.
However, hard work, a sharp presentation and knowing the ins-and-outs of your business will get you somewhere. Take John Fearon, founder of Dropmysite, for example.
“The funding we received after the show helped me grow the business and we now have 670,000 signups for our two websites www.dropmysite.com and www.dropmyemail.com,” says Mr Fearon, who appeared in episode eight of the show. Watch all episodes here. (LINK: http://www.youtube.com/user/AngelsGate )
Want a slice of the money too? Then you can sign up for season two of the program which offers various ways to get funding for your project including $250,000 in grants and cash, and of course, appearing on TV to give your business even more exposure.
Before submitting your idea though, read these dos and don’ts from Ko Tze Shen, the executive producer of Angel’s Gate, who’s also the founder and director of Flexo Gaming, a research and development company. Not ready to take the plunge? Then keep these tips in mind for when you’re facing down potential investors.
- Spend some time working out your 30-second pitch. You have a short window of opportunity to impress the judges so use your time wisely.
- Show off demos or product samples. Make sure these presentations are impactful.
- Focus on key ideas. Especially If you’re not ready with your demo.
- Be enthusiastic. Show your emotions – passion, love and all that positive energy for your ideas.
- Be nice. Entrepreneurs sometimes forget to be nice as they overcome challenges and survive in intense environments. You will need help so be kind to everyone you meet.
- Change your business idea too drastically just before going on TV. You will look foolish.
- Dress badly. No one wants to work with entrepreneurs who don’t care about their appearances. It’s fine to wear or have props though. Just make sure you make an effort in terms of how you present yourself visually.
- Bear grudges. Most people will say no to you and your idea. These are also the same people who will sing your praises when you do succeed. Listen to their critiques and incorporate the useful points. Time is wasted on rationalising and holding grudges over the opinions of people who have little or no value to your business.
- Give up. Your idea might not work and it can get depressing to know that you've failed, especially if it’s something you truly believe in. You loved your idea so it is natural to be upset. (If you are not then you probably didn’t like your idea very much to begin with.)
But, as with any relationship that didn't really pan out, you have to pick yourself up, learn from past mistakes and move on to the next big adventure. Come out of every experience stronger and better than ever before.
Submissions for season two of Angel’s Gate is now open. Log on to angelsgate.com for more information.