How to Attract Investors to Your Company
By: Bookkeeping GO
The first thing to think about before you even incorporate is whether or not your business will need investors. If so, think about the kinds of things that someone will want to take a risk on. Read the current climate, survey the competition, and dust off your research skills, because you’re going to need to put a lot of work in to convince someone to take a chance on your business or product.
What’s most important to someone who’s willing to give you a boat-load of cash? A return on their investment. They aren’t doing this out of the kindness of their hearts. Investors are going to want to see detailed records of your finances and judge for themselves how likely it is that they’re making a good decision. For this, you’ll need to keep a bullet-proof budget. You’ll also need reasonable projections so that you can show investors that you’re level-headed and understand the realities your business faces going forward. Predicting breakout millions in the first year of operations is bound to turn people off. You don’t want to seem like you don’t have much faith in your business or its execution, either, so look at what other companies have done in terms of growth and amend your predictions as needed.
Put all this information together in a business plan. Some investors receive thousands of business plans a year, and you’ll have to do a few things to stand out. Don’t mess around here. Put the work in and present your information clearly and concisely. If you can’t write a business plan, contract it out to a freelancer. Little things like grammar and formatting could be the difference between landing an investor or losing out to a competitor. You’re going to want to put your best foot forward, and this is the place to do that.
Big investment firms often focus on a particular area. You’ll need to do the research to figure out which firms are most appropriate for you to approach. If you’re sending a business plan about cactus origami to an investment firm that handles tech startups, you’re wasting everyone’s time. Moves like this tell investors that you’ve either exhausted all other possibilities or that you simply aren’t paying attention. Investors talk to each other. Don’t give them any reason to blackball you.
You don’t have to be the friendliest and most charismatic person in the world to land and maintain investors. Sure, that might help, but it also might throw up red flags and look like you’re covering up your business’s dirty secrets. If you are approached by an investor, or a firm returns your calls, don’t freak out. Like any social interaction, there’s a balance to be struck between practicing open communication and seeming desperate. If you come across like a used car salesman, then don’t be surprised if potential investors choose to pass you by. But do give out your email and cell number, and let your investors know that they can contact you any time with questions or concerns. Be ready to help, but be firm about your boundaries.
If they ask you for something, prioritize it. Tell them you’ll have it by the date requested, but get it to them sooner, if possible. It’ll show initiative, that you’re prepared to work hard for a return on their money, and that they can count on you. But be firm about your limits. As a business owner, you’re likely balancing a number of things in your life. When investors enter the picture, your prioritization skills will be put to the test.
Get used to rejection. You’re going to hear the word “no” quite a bit. It’s not the end of the world. If your business is any good, and your proposal is the best it can be, then it won’t matter how many investors pass you by, or how much time passes. Someone will want to take a chance on you. Keep going until you find them.
Bookkeeping Go prepares your business for all ACCOUNTING • FINANCIAL • BOOKKEEPING needs. Its team is made up of diverse and unique consultants with expertise in many facets of accounting including business valuation, forensic accounting, and bookkeeping. Its entire team of advisors is available to you, delivering much more value than traditional accounting solutions.
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