10 Pitch Mistakes
- Poor Positioning. (Technology looking for a problem?) You should be solving a REAL, well-defined problem. Define a clear PAIN. No customer validation? Don’t provide “So what” benefits: give the investor context to enable them to draw the right conclusion.
- Lack of Tight Focus. Define the market segment and do not go after different markets just because you can.
- Not Enough Real-World Market Analysis. (Top Down versus Bottoms Up. Top down has NO credibility! TD: External information and forecast. BU: Internal forecast and pipeline plus local knowledge or expertise).
- No Business “Cockpit Gauges”. (What are the three things that drive your business? Define no more than three dashboard gauges you will measure at all times.)
- Unclear Business Model. (How will you make money? “e.g. we have a simple business model. Installation fee, subscription fee, and support fees.” Talk about a single customer). No clear path to profitability. Oblivious to sell and budget cycles. Show ASSUMPTIONS before Revenue Model.
- Poor or Incomplete Competitive Analysis. (Not clearly distinguishable, or defensible, from others). Not disclosing EVERYBODY in the space. Also, not realizing the power of the status quo.
- Weak Team Information. (It’s the team, stupid! VCs bet on jockeys, not horses).
- Poorly Defined or Weak Go-to-Market Plan. (Unclear attack plan, no assigned responsibilities, no leverage points.) Who else has a vested interest in your success?
- Goofy Fundamentals That Distract. (Not doing the basics right. No adult supervision.