10 Ways to Practice Your Pitch Presentation When Seeking Investors
Practice makes perfect before pitching your idea to investors. It’s important that you display the right amount of confidence so that investors will believe in you and your business idea.
Q. Getting your pitch right for investors is vital—after all, you only get so many chances to raise the funds you need. What is the best way to practice your presentation?
1. Utilize your co-founders
Practice with your other founders and really drill one another with tough questions. It’s vital that you attempt to poke as many holes in the business before you actually pitch, so that you have a strong understanding of what your business’s strengths and weaknesses are.
2. Video yourself
Create videos of yourself doing your presentation, so you can study your deliver. Watching your videos will give you insight into what to change and how you come across.
3. Cut the jargon
Knowing your pitch inside out is key, but what’s more important is being able to explain your idea to the everyday consumer. If you can’t do this, you need to step back and reassess before meeting with investors. You also need to be able to articulate why your idea’s important—what problem are you solving?
4. Practice pitching to those who are unbiased
You can’t just practice pitch to your cheerleaders who are going to give you high marks. You need to get a real, honest critique of your pitch and presentation style. Preferably, find experienced startup founders (who have already raised funds) or actual investors that can act as mentors—people who will give you honest input on your business plan, presentation, and overall pitch.
5. Pitch to brutally honest friends
Make your pitch to the most brutally honest friends you have. This will prepare you for the worst-case scenario, and you always encounter objections you didn't expect.
6. Really play with it
It is incredibly important to have fun while pitching. It can be easy to overthink your pitch, or to get in your head, so when you practice your pitch, do it where you go crazy with it. Loud voices, jokes, silliness— get it all out. It not only gets you out of your shell, but makes you aware of parts of your pitch that may not work. Then adjust and practice. You will always come out feeling more confident.
7. Know your numbers
Some investors may have already researched your company and just want to dive deep into the numbers. Be prepared to answer any questions they may have about your numbers, and be flexible enough to change your presentation, depending on their interest.
8. Visualize yourself nailing it
Research has shown that your brain reacts the same way, whether you are doing something in real life or visualizing it in your mind. By repeatedly visualizing yourself giving your pitch to a room full of investors, you are wiring the perfect delivery into your brain. This practice has a track record of success in high stakes situations.
9. Time yourself
Time yourself when practicing your presentation in order to figure out how long it takes to get your most important points across. Identify any areas that take too long to discuss and find ways to cut them down without losing clarity. Investors won’t like it if you waste their time.
10. Use podcasts and co working spaces
The most important factor in preparing for an investor pitch is doing your due diligence. Not only will this allow you to weed out investors who wouldn’t be a right fit, but it will also make your pitch more compelling. Secondly, if you feel uncomfortable pitching yourself or speaking publicly, look for opportunities to practice. Podcasts and co working spaces can be great places to practice.