On a day to day basis, many young people make the effort to present their ideas or business plans to potential investors. However, many fall short of one very important factor; investors do not want to be told that they should invest in your idea because it is good/great. They are interested to know WHAT they are investing in, WHY they should invest, HOW MUCH and the INVESTMENT APPRAISAL.
If you have taken time to plan your presentation or pitch, I am able to know the above in less than 10min. Nonetheless, I will share some of the pointers I look out for during presentations.
- Use an economy of words. Be ruthlessly efficient in the words you use, and speak quickly. Hold my attention by challenging me to keep up with you.
- Proper tone and volume. Come at me with energy, a positive attitude and sufficient volume. Your confidence will show me how much you also believe in your plan.
- Fewer words, fewer slides. Don’t feed me PowerPoint or read out your document. Use the slides or document to guide you in talking with me, not using them to communicate for you.
- No sympathy for spelling and grammatical errors. By the time you are getting a chance to present your pitch, you have had time to go over it numerous times. You cannot afford to look reckless. How am I to trust you and work with you if you don’t care about what you are presenting to me? Use your resources effectively (internet, Microsoft office etc).
- Show videos, pictures, illustrations or a sample product. A good one will reinforce your point.
- Tell stories. I’ll forget data but remember a story. Better still, make me part of your story. You will definitely capture my attention.
- Know the audience and communicate appropriately. Start with me. What do you want me to know?
- Believe and know what you’re selling. If you don’t passionately believe it, don’t expect me to. If you do not know or have sufficient information about your idea or the market, don’t expect me to educate you.
- Tell me to do something. Give me a call to action.
- Don’t slouch. Your chair/space is your podium not park bench. Generally your body language will speak to me. Give me the right impression.
- It’s not about what you know; it’s about what I need to know. Don’t feed me everything you know, but work backward and leave me with what I need to know.
Be straightforward, engage my mind and make me curious. Even though it may not be my kind of investment, it may inspire me to assist you with my networks.
All the best!