The hit ABC show Shark Tank is a great source of inspiration for entrepreneurs, who are struggling to perfect their investor pitches. Since the first episode of the show aired back in 2009, many great deals have been made between the sharks and the entrepreneurs and many successful products have been funded like Scrub Daddy, Grace and Lace and Breathometer to name a few.
Appearing on Shark Tank is a great opportunity for the entrepreneurs, not only because they may land an investment but also because they reach a huge audience. The entrepreneurs know that the stake is high so they should be prepared.
The quality of pitches on Shark Tank is very high. There is so much to learn from the pitchers – from the body language through the product presentation to the negotiation techniques. Here we focus on four elements that most Shark Tank pitches share that will help you improve your pitch as well.
Research the investors
Know who you are pitching in front of. Investors feel connected to entrepreneurs who remind them of themselves when they were starting. If they can rely on your story, your chances of success are increasing.
Before you start crafting your pitch, take the time to do a research of the investors – how did they start, what made them so successful, what do they like, what they dislike, what type of companies they have previously invested in and so on.
Check out their websites, follow the investors on LinkedIn, read the posts they share, find as many interviews with them as you can – all of this will help you get a better perspective on what they look for in an entrepreneur.
Show a prototype
If you’ve ever watched an episode of the Shark Tank you’ve noticed that the investors always ask to see some samples. But of course, they do! Hearing about a cool product is one thing, seeing it is completely another experience. If you are presenting a product, the best way to showcase is to show the prototype. Visual and interactive presentations have a better success rate. Find a way to incorporate it into your pitch.
Chanel the power of data
One of the most important parts of a successful pitch is to know your numbers. It doesn’t matter how good of a presenter you are and how captivating your pitch is, if the numbers don’t add up, you lose credibility. Visualize the data you have in a put-together slide – showcase your early stage sales, your customer acquisition cost, the projections for the next year – basically all information that the investors need to see the potential in your business.
Pitch with a co-founder
Most Shark Tank pitches are entertaining and engaging and one of the main reasons for it is that often all co-founders actively participate in the pitch. Knowing all co-founders is important for the investors – they need to be aware of who they will be dealing with. Keep in mind that if the co-founders attend they also have to take part in the presentation. Pitching with a co-founder increases the chances of better handling of the Q&A sessions, which is a key part of the pitch.