Not everyone is looking for venture capital.
But, for those who are, nothing is more important than their “pitch,” the presentation they make to prospective investors.
And while tight writing and passionate delivery are critical, none of that matters if you can’t persuade a qualified investor to sit down and listen.
On a recent episode of the This American Life podcast, producer Alex Bloomberg can be heard pitching legendary Silicon Valley investor Chris Sacca on a startup that produces, eh, podcasts.
I recommend the recording to anyone considering asking someone else – from an uncle to an angel to a bank – for money. It is literally the best example I’ve ever heard of what NOT to do.
One of the many lessons it offers is this: even an inept noob like Bloomberg can get the ear of a giant like Sacca, provided that noob has juice.
Sacca took the meeting because Bloomberg is a recognized authority in radio, even though he has never once worked in private industry, much less operated his own business.
So, to all the other great reasons to be positioned as a recognized authority, add this: increased access to private capital markets.
It’s how I was able to schedule numerous investor presentations and attract over $3 million in private equity to DocumentPlanet in the late 1990s.
And it still works today.