Angel Investors are like angels for promising startups, helping them achieve their goals through financial support. These “Angels” are individuals with great affluence, interested in smart investments. They see companies with great potential as something to be cherished. But how to approach them, is a great challenge that many startups face. Even if you have a great idea, a lot of factors determine weather you can convince them or even get to them or not. I went through a lot of articles and documents online, followed discussions on Quora, and asked a few friends who had knowledge to share; to get a good idea of what these investors look for in a startup. Based on that, I have compiled a list of things to help startups in finding their Angel Investors.
Go out, look for, and build your network
- Make yourself a part of as many networking events as you can.
- It is preferable that you find different networks of angel investors. It is much easier for you to raise your full amount needed, with one phone call, instead of calling the numerous investors individually.
- There are sites like AngelSoft.net and Angel List are great for checking out Angels. Angel List is good for easily finding angels from your region/industry.
Find Angel or Angels that are a good match for your company
- Preferably someone who understands your industry and is capable of bringing real value to the table.If they have experience and think they can help accelerate your progress; it is easier for them to get involved directly.
- Build connections that offer opportunities of meeting with investors in your local market.
Your credibility is your track record and your ability to execute, among other things. It holds more importance to them, than your idea or your POC. It matters who your team is, and how efficiently they do turn your idea into a real product. Angel Investors prefer individuals with industry experience. In case you’re fresh in the field, its good to have someone with prior experience on your team.
Your business plan should emphasize competitive advantages of your idea and how its going to grow in the face industry challenges. If you can, have a working demo ready by the time you set up a meeting.
- Prepare plans for facing possible contingencies.
- Prepare the “proof of concept” for your venture.
- Have your MVP ready for the time of contact.
- Have regular discussions with people with Industry insight.
Keep a plan-B ready
- Keep in mind that it can’t always be a win. Keep other options ready. You can always ask a bank for loan. Also, check-out local Government support agencies who can help you out in your endeavors.