• October 1, 2022

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Whether you’re an experienced entrepreneur or just starting out, investors can be a crucial part of your startup’s continued success. While it’s possible for investors to take a chance on a business, many investors have certain criteria they’ll look for before they take the plunge.

Your business’s investor is just as important as your brand’s values and mission, so when you find a good potential candidate, you’ll want to do all you can to impress them. Below, nine members of Young Entrepreneur Council share some crucial tips to follow when you’re trying to gain the interest of a potential investor.

1. Be Yourself

Never try to act like someone else. Choosing the right investors for your venture is key, and I am always authentic and open, without changing my personality or behavior to try to appeal. I see personal fit as a long-term success factor for investor relations, and being yourself is a great way to find out if there is a fit and if both parties are interested in starting to work together. – Dave Hengartner, rready

2. Be Aware Of How You Come Across

Don’t come across as desperate. You should always stick to your principles and vision and seek the right investor. If you seem like you’re trying to say whatever someone wants to hear, it only conveys that you don’t have confidence in your project or business. Be honest about what you stand for and remember there are many potential investors out there. – Kalin Kassabov, ProTexting

3. Avoid Speaking Poorly About Your Competitors

Don’t trash talk your competition. When an entrepreneur insults their competition, it is an immediate turn off. Entrepreneurs should have a healthy respect for their competition. It also shows how much time an entrepreneur (and their team) spent on comparing and copying instead of focusing on their own work and success. – Daisy Jing, Banish

4. Make Sure You Know Your Numbers

I have found that one of the biggest red flags for investors is when they are pitched unrealistic valuations and future projections. While you need to be able to catch the interest of investors, if they feel you are less than honest, naive or don’t understand your industry (or some combination of all three), you have little hope of bringing them on board. – Salvador Ordorica, The Spanish Group LLC

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5. Know What You Want

If you want to gain the interest of a potential investor, it’s important never to go into it without knowing exactly what you want. If you’re unsure about exactly what you’re after, you won’t get the outcome you’re looking for that’s best for your business. – Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

6. Give It Time

Don’t walk into the meeting only with the money in mind. While that is obviously the major concern, you can’t expect your investors to fall in love with your pitch the first time they hear it. Give them the time to digest your idea and let them contemplate it after the first meeting. Don’t ask for money right away. Prepare for any potential questions they might ask and be ready to clear any doubts. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

7. Avoid Making Claims Without Data

One thing you should never do when trying to gain an investor’s interest is make claims without supporting data. The quickest way to lose the interest of someone who may have invested in your brand is to show them that you’re willing to make unsubstantiated claims to manipulate them and earn their trust. – Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

8. Stop The Cold Calls

Avoid cold calling by all means. Investors receive numerous proposals and, therefore, they won’t respond to emails or calls from unknown individuals. Instead, to attract the attention of a potential investor, be sure to send your proposal through a referral or a strong recommendation from their network. Make the approach as professional as possible. – Candice Georgiadis, Digital Day

9. Steer Clear Of Ultimatums

One thing you should never do if you’re trying to gain the interest of a potential investor is to give them an ultimatum or try and force them to give you money. This indicates unprofessionalism and will make investors wonder how you’ll manage employees and customers. It could also create a knee-jerk reaction that’s negative, and investors will decline to invest in your business. – Blair Williams, MemberPress

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