Before approaching any investors, go over these pointers to ensure that you make as many right moves as possible in securing your financing:
1. You should create a business plan that emphasizes your particular competitive advantage and how it is sustainable.
2. Be flexible with your deal terms to try to maximize both your interest as well as your investor’s. Rather than trying to get a bigger piece of the same pie, try to make the whole pie bigger for both parties.
3. Emphasize your industry experience to potential investors. This will alleviate many of their concerns and build a comfort and understanding of your leadership capabilities.
4. Be patient when raising money. Typically it takes anywhere from three to nine months for a successful raise.
5. Make sure you approach investors who have an investment criteria which matches with your business.
6. A good idea is not enough. You need to prove that your idea can become a viable and profitable business.
7. You should identify and contact investors who have a geographic proximity to you. Rightly or wrongly, investors like to be close to businesses they are investing in.
8. Often in order to raise money, you need to first spend considerable time and money. It may be ironic to have to spend money to get money but it will position you far better in front of investors to have a professional and well thought out presentation.
9. Find investors who can bring more than just money to the table. Find investors who you can leverage off of their experience and guidance.
10. Find long-term investors. Investors who share your vision but who are also patient in their time period will provide you with the latitude to build out your idea prudently and not be forced into making hasty decisions just to fill an unrealistic deadline.