Secrets for Nailing a Pitch From 7 Female Founders
Want to take your start-up to the next level, get in front of dozens of investors, and even score some funding?
If so (and if your company has at least one female founder), apply now to Women 2.0's PITCH NYC Conference & Competition 2012 in November. Finalists will get the opportunity to pitch their company to a panel of investors, and the winner will get a meeting with Marc Andreessen (Co-Founder & General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz), a one-year service to Rackspace (valued at $24,000), and an automatic finalist interview for TechStars NYC Winter 2013 class.
Ready to get started? Check out the application details (hurry—the deadline is August 31), then get some insider tips for pitching your company from these six successful founders and advisors.
I subscribe to the 10,000-hour rule to mastery, so practice, practice, practice until your pitch becomes natural and unscripted. Practice day and night, in the shower, in bed, whenever. Also, watch this and learn how to invoke the audiences' emotions so they remember your pitch. Last but not least, pitch with no shoes on and always smile!
Founder & CEO of Reclip.It
Do everything you can to not give a damn when you walk into the room to pitch. Line up enough other opportunities, options, and ways of thinking about where you're at, that you don't suffer from 'OMG it all hinges on this one presentation!' mindset. That way you'll be relaxed, confident, able to enjoy pitching the venture you're passionate about, and all of that will shine through and make for a much better pitch.
1. If you don't piss at least some people off, what you are doing isn't revolutionary. 2. Don't be afraid to paint your vision as big as you've dreamed it. 3. Your investors need to like your idea/business but fall in love with you. Because if they love your idea more than they believe in your ability to adapt and execute, they are the wrong investors. 4. Be proud of your xx chromosomes, but walk into that pitch with balls.
CEO & Co-Founder, Yapp
In terms of advice, I would say being authentic is the most important thing. Companies are investing in you as much as they are in your idea and company. Sherpaa's whole brand is built on trust and honesty, so it's not only what we stand for as a company but also how we guide every decision we make."
The most important thing to do before you pitch a VC is take some time to get to know them. Ask for a soft intro meeting to see if they are a fit for you. People invest based on data and emotion. So, understand if the dynamic works before you do the formal pitch.
Co-Founder and Chief Juggler, Meshin
Be genuine and passionate. If nothing else, the audience will remember your positive energy. Passion is transformative, infectious, and moves people to action—which may be a connection, referral, great idea, or funding.
International Venture Lawyer/Start-up Advisor
Tell a story. Most likely, the audience you are pitching to will be hearing a lot of pitches on one day. Instead of listing out a series of facts about your business, you want to weave those facts together to present a cohesive story. It will help the audience to follow and be easier for you to remember while on stage.