Having a million Naira idea for a new company or startup is great—but then what? You probably need a website, a team, some office space, and to pay your rent.
Which, of course, means you need money – plenty of it. Whether it’s a cool new office or a swanky hub, most entrepreneurs are well aware that at least a bit of funding is needed to get off the ground.
Create a strategic list of potential investors
It is probably wise not to cast your net unnecessarily too wide. That way, you save yourself the hassle of talking to too many people. Concentrate efforts on the investors who are most likely to be a good fit for your company. (You can always expand the list later.)
Investors are likely to favour pitches from companies that are introduced by a common contact. (Think about how much effective this is!) Look through your list and see if you have any mutual acquaintances. If so, beautiful! But be sure to ask your contacts for an introduction, so your potential investor can really feel like he or she is doing the mutual contact a favour.
Make your own introductions
Of course, there will likely be some investors who you can’t find an introduction to. If that is the case, you simply need to reach out yourself. This will generally require well thought-out emails to potential investors (be careful not to leave any evidence that you’re sending out hundreds of cold emails).
Get their attention
No investor wants to throw money away – it’s a two way courtship. So, make sure you spend some time thoughtfully putting yourself out there. Even if your product isn’t live, you can still generate attention for your team and your mission. But if for any reason, you get turned down, don’t let that get to you. Whatever the case, never be afraid to follow up in a professional manner.
You’re going to hear a lot of “Nos”—but that just makes the first time you hear “Yes!” that much more exciting.
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