Taking your startup to the next level and expanding in to the international market can be key to significant growth. In fact, increasing your exposure from domestic to international markets can get you access to more growing economies than just the U.S. But, pitching your business plan to international investors can pose several obstacles including differing languages, cultures, and protocols. Here are five tips to make your business’s pitch an international success.
- Dig a little
Before you even start creating your pitch, research your potential investors. Who are they? What’s their track history with investments? Do they speak your native language? If not, will you need to translate your website for product information? Depending on the location of your potential investors, certain meetings (long dinners or get-togethers) may take time or need to happen over the course of several meetings. This is by no means an exhaustive list, so brainstorm every possible way your first (or several) interactions will play out so that you provide an impeccable first impression.
- Less is more
A pitch should get right to the point so your audience knows exactly what you’re product is, why its important, and what can be gained from buying it. Don’t get caught up in the tiny details or cloud your main points with flowery language—especially if there is a language barrier. Keep it simple and prioritize the most important aspects so you provide a compelling and thought-provoking speech.
- Sketch out your business model
So how exactly do you keep it simple? Simple, provide a brief outline of your business plan. This should include what you’re selling, to whom, why, for how much, and how customers pay you.
- Don’t fear the competition
Let’s face it, everyone has competition. Don’t see this as a setback, see it as an opportunity. So explain how competitors are doing business and exactly how you will do things differently and better. It is crucial to be crystal clear to your audience so they know why your plan is the best possible option.
- Show and tell
Believe it or not, there have been times when business pitches failed to actually show the product. In some cases, it can be tricky to show your product, but you need to find a way to show a visual representation or mock-up so your investors know exactly what they’re getting into.
Pitching your business plan to international investors doesn’t need to be a daunting experience. If you follow these five simple tips, you’ll be that much closer to turning your pitch into a successful hit. Tweet @StarterNoise using #globalpitch to let us know what you think about pitching to international investors.
Derek Rundell, is a successful business leader, operator, and serial entrepreneur. Derek has founded, managed and sold businesses in the technology, media and finance industries. He sits on several boards and serves as an advisor/investor to numerous established businesses and startups. Startups are Derek’s real passion, and in addition to building his own portfolio of technology, media and financial ventures, he invests in and mentors startups and entrepreneurs. He is passionate about sharing his knowledge and helping other businesses succeed.