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What is the worst startup pitch ever?

Take your choice (these are both real, honest-to-God pitches, and I’ve got the originals in my possession):

Contestant A CluelessCo is an internet startup company seeking $2 million of equity financing to fund our company for at least one year. CluelessCo will become the main consumer outlet for the internet, digital cable and satellite TV, and cell phones and PDAs.

How does someone get a meeting with angel investor David S. Rose?

The most useful meetings with an investor are ones where going in everyone understands that there may actually be a rational reason for the investor to be interested. So even if my own mother asked me to meet with you, and you were pitching me a biotech opportunity for a $10 million investment at a $90 million valuation, I might

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What are five tough questions that every founder should be prepared to answer in a pitch to VC’s?

How will you make money (and no, advertising is not the answer)? Who, specifically, is your first customer? Second? Third? What is your contingency plan for when this seed round is exhausted, and you are unable to raise any more? What is your API/platform/partnership strategy? How are you going to sell the company, and to whom, within six years?

 

As an investor, what is the worst presentation that you have seen?

I’ve written on this topic previously, including David S. Rose’s answer to Startups: What is the worst startup pitch ever?. While I’ve never laughed outright during a pitch, I’ve certainly had quite a few occasions where I had to work hard not to wince. The problems with bad pitches tend to fall into the following major categories:

What are some quantitative metrics angel investors look for in a pitch?

Unfortunately there’s nothing that can be generalized, because each case is different. Realistically, most angel deals are very early stage, which means that reliable metrics are pretty hard to come by. So most of the number crunching and ‘what if’ analyses tend to focus on customer adoption and revenues.

Is an info-rich investor deck preferable to a “Presentation Zen” investor deck?

As Matt Haworth noted, the two different types of presentations are for two completely different purposes. In my presentation training sessions I refer to it as “one to show, and one to go”.

When you are doing an in-person presentation (of virtually any kind, not just a pitch), you definitely want to follow Garr Reynold’s advice in Presentation Zen, and keep text to

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Incorporate before pitching to VC’s?

While you will definitely need to be a corporate entity before you can accept funding from any investor (or issue stock options to any employees), the specific corporate status of the venture at this stage is much less important to investors than its functional status. That is, if all you have is a good idea, the reality is that you

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True Story: We Didn’t Buy The Victim Pitch

Posted by on June 26th, 2012

Most of us know not to complain about the previous employer during a job interview. Fair or not, it just doesn’t work, right? The new job never want to hire somebody with that kind of chip on a shoulder.

More so with investor pitches.

I was at one once, as an investor member of a local angel investment group,

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Pitches that Resonate Sell Themselves

Posted by on March 7th, 2012

Sometimes, in some of the very best investment pitches, a particular point, idea, concept, fact, or story suddenly transfers from entrepreneur to investor. Call it resonance.

The word resonance comes from music. Think of a tuning fork resonating at a certain frequency. If you play the guitar, think of how you tune it by playing the same note on two

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