Acuity COO, Matthew May, has coached over 100 companies through the pitch process at Venture Atlanta—the largest venture conference in the Southeast. Here are the most common mistakes that he sees and the pieces of advice that he gives to every company.
Don’t talk theoretically.
Many people make the mistake of talking about theoretical use cases. Switch from talking about potential use cases to talking about the present and the specific clients you’re already working with. There’s a subliminal message to investors when you’re talking about what your product could do versus what your product is already doing.”
I definitely recommend practicing your pitch in front of multiple people and seeking feedback, but remember that at the end of the day you have to be authentic to yourself. The worst presentations I’ve seen are the ones where it’s obvious that people have tried to incorporate every piece of advice (rather than focusing on a few core pieces) and they’ve lost themselves in the process.
I try to remind presenters that people will likely only remember one or two things about you — and two is generous if we’re being honest. So, think of the one thing you want people to take away from your presentation and then focus on making that thing really memorable.
Know your financials.
Know where you were, where you are, and where you’re projected to be. PRO TIP: Our historical cleanup add-on gets your financials investor-ready and our Accounting services keep your financials investor-ready.
The ask is key.
Your ask is your CTA. Be clear about what you’re asking for and specific with how you’ll use that money should they choose to give it to you. Learn more about Acuity’s services and how they can help your business be ready for what’s next—pitching to investors, presenting to the board, preparing for an M&A—whatever the future holds. And for more tips for entrepreneurs and business owners, follow us on Twitter: @Acuity_Co and @TheTechCPA.