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What is the biggest complaint Investors have about the pitches made to them?

1. I'd like to know what entrepreneurs are missing when they present before potential investors of any level.
2. What is the biggest complaint entrepreneurs/founders have about the pitch experience?

24 Replies

Nima Aghaeepour
1
0
Nima Aghaeepour Entrepreneur
Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University
For your first question: Amir Ashkenazi has a slide deck on his public LinkedIn profile titled "The Ins and Outs of Lunching a Startup". I love slide #26 ;)
David Schwartz
2
0
David Schwartz Entrepreneur • Advisor
Multi-Platform (Desktop+Mobile) Rapid Prototyping + Dev, Tool Dev
Regarding #1: Watch Shark Tank. Some patterns begin to emerge if you watch enough shows. I'm in a class of sorts at the moment about startups and this question has come up. Basically, investors want to see evidence of "Product Market Fit", namely some decent level of sales to parties other than friends and family. If it's a website of some sort, they want to see 10k-20k monthly unique visitors.

I cannot comment on #2.
Karl Schulmeisters
3
3
Karl Schulmeisters Entrepreneur
CTO ClearRoadmap
#2 is probably that investors are very conservative and avoid funding disruptive or innovative ideas
Janice Mandel
3
0
Janice Mandel Entrepreneur • Advisor
Writer, Communications Strategist, Advisor
A recent Investor panel stressed among the biggest pitfalls is not understanding the interests and business model of the investors or addressing competition and how you differentiate. Just wrote a blog post about this at JaniceMandel.com Sent from my iPhone
Alison Lewis
1
0
Alison Lewis Entrepreneur • Advisor
CEO/Creative Director
They want a clear WHY and a real vision for the company. Most people jump into to how and what and never say why.

Also a clear roadmap and roduct market fit with business model.

In the end, the first investors really need to like you and you need an "in" if you are a true innovator...the rest is kind of BS that pleases their superiors inside a firm.
Karl Schulmeisters
7
1
Karl Schulmeisters Entrepreneur
CTO ClearRoadmap

Here's a good list of errors made in Pitch startups http://www.pragmaticmarketing.com/resources/5-lessons-from-150-startup-pitches

and here is a good summary of Pitch content http://microventures.com/education/essential-elements-startup-pitch-presentation

Most pitches that I've seen talk a lot about

  • What they are building
    • How cool it is
    • how they came up with the idea
    • how it will make things better
    • how much positive feedback they have gotten

but they often either gloss over or completely miss

  • how they will monetize their users
  • how they will market to their potential users
  • who their big compeititors are
  • how investors will exit.


in particular this last one. I've almost never heard a startup pitch get this right

Tim Kilroy
1
0
Tim Kilroy Entrepreneur • Advisor
Analytics - LTV - Boosting Profits - Digital Marketing
My company is lucky enough to be in Startup Next (check it out -cool program). And last night I heard the best advice I have ever heard about pitching (this was from the entrepreneur side, not the investor side), was to be authentic. Guessing what your audience wants is hard, but knowing what drives your passion and ingenuity is easy. Follow that and the right investors will emerge.

Obviously, you need to have a quality business idea, a quality team and the ability to pull it off, but authenticity is the real key - that was from a TechStars graduate that raised a boatload.
Laurelle Johnson, MBA
2
1
Business Strategist, Strategic Sales Expert,Panel/Speaker | Aiding Emerging Growth Co.s Nationwide - Tech, Mobile,
Check out Guy Kawasaki's "Art of the Pitch" He is an investor and his 10/20/30 rule is great guide for pitch deck. He is on youtube, so you can see easily what investors tend to look for.


Linda Marshall-Smith
0
0
Linda Marshall-Smith Entrepreneur
Marketing Consultant, Ambassador, Silicon Beach at CoFoundersLab
Laurelle Johnson, I totally agree and was going to recommend the same thing. The 10/20/30 rule is excellent. I also recommend taking a look at this article. The Founder Institute (of which I am a grad) specializes in fine tuning pitches. http://fi.co/posts/14661
Karl Schulmeisters
1
0
Karl Schulmeisters Entrepreneur
CTO ClearRoadmap
I've had investors comment that 10/20/30 deck was not detailed enough.

10/20/30 works for an initial intro but for a more technical pitch there is more info the reviewers want to see. ideally you can see an ideal deck that the reviewers like
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