Daniela Raffel, Dawn Capital
I think the best thing in life is to be prepared. Ultimately, you want to make sure that every person you talk to is giving you something of value. Therefore, after the initial conversations, it is not necessarily helpful to ask everyone the same question (unless it is very controversial and you are crowdsourced opinions). So I would say you have a list of questions with specific examples of how you are currently struggling to answer them. See if you can tailor them to the expertise of the investor you’re talking to. I think if possible try to avoid seeing this as an opportunity to reach out to an investor, but be sure to ask questions on how to pitch / story-tell etc.
David Boulton, DIP Capital
Bring your “A” game: Every meeting with investors is an opportunity to showcase your company and show who you are. If you’re well prepared, you can stand out from the multitude of other founders investors see and keep you on their radar.
Do not be afraid to use the investor network: Investors have great networks. So if you need a product expert or a sales expert, ask for a Reward Points contact when you know exactly who you want to be introduced to!
Always follow the next steps: Think about what the ideal next steps are for you and how to prepare investors to move forward in the right way. If you have a good strategy to keep working with investors, this is an excellent opportunity to gain longer-term benefits.
Lucy Clarke, Octopus Ventures
1. Come armed with questions so you can make the most of your time – no question is a bad question!
2. It goes without saying, but make sure you know your company inside out and have your relevant metrics on hand.
3. Know who you are meeting, but most importantly, relax, be yourself, and enjoy the conversation – getting the right VC on board is an important decision and you will want to get to know them as they are be on your board for years!
Luc de Leyritz, Project A.
- Do you have a specific question?: Most people like to help but can’t figure out what they need. The more specific your request, the more likely it will get through.
- Inquire with the person you are talking to: People feel valued, it will make this chat easier. I would find out one thing that I really like about each of the people you talk to and let them know.
- Enjoy the ride: Every person you meet is an opportunity to help and get help. Relax and enjoy the chat.