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5 Tips for Pitching a Winning Business Idea Discover how to create and deliver a compelling business pitch to investors with five key steps.

By Cyrus Claffey Edited by Chelsea Brown

Key Takeaways

  • Creating and delivering an effective business pitch requires practice, knowledge and dedication.
  • Engage investors by vividly explaining your idea and appealing to their emotions.
  • Understand your audience and their demographics to give your pitch more depth.
  • Investors want to know why you created your product and how you believe it will make a difference.
  • Use the SMART criteria to present concrete, realistic metrics that substantiate your pitch and demonstrate the potential success of your idea.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Having a brilliant idea is only a small step in creating a successful product. Getting that idea from simply an idea to a manufactured item requires hundreds of hours of work, the support of a great team and the financial backing of a reliable investor.

As the inventor and founder of ButterflyMX, I understand how nerve-wracking it is to pitch a brand-new business idea to investors to fund your project. And as someone who's pitched a business idea and succeeded, I want to help other entrepreneurs discover how to express their business ideas into a winning pitch.

Here are my top five tips for aspiring entrepreneurs to effectively pitch their business ideas and have the most compelling and persuasive pitch in the room.

Related: 3 Tips to Follow When Pitching to Investors

1. Weave a compelling story

When preparing for your pitch, your first objective is to ensure that the idea is so vivid that investors believe in its potential to be upscaled.

With that in mind, what are some ways that you can bring the story of your product idea to life?

One way is to appeal to people's emotions. The more someone feels an emotional connection to a concept, the more compelled they are to see it come to life. Another good way to make your pitch creative is to paint a picture of how it works using a pitch deck. The more vividly you explain your idea, the better investors can see it in their mind's eyes.

2. Know your audience

Knowing who your audience is will help you in more ways than just bringing your creation into existence — it will also give your business pitch more depth.

For instance, understanding your audience and their demographics will make you more informed and educated when it comes to describing your idea during your pitch by clearly highlighting who you want to target. What's more, detailing who you're hoping to market to will help investors envision your idea's impact, again connecting to their emotions and compelling them to support your pitch.

3. Be a problem solver

So, you've created a winning concept that you're proud of. That's a great start, but investors want to know why you created your product and how you believe it will make a difference.

For instance, one of the pain points I set out to solve when I created ButterflyMX was inconvenient building access and lost packages. Before I knew what my product was, I knew that I wanted to make the building access easier for residents and reduce lost or undeliverable packages.

That being said, the best way to maintain your momentum during a pitch is to spend time on the problems that you set out to solve when you came up with your ideas. Explain the pain points you observed and how your idea solves that certain set of problems.

Related: An Entrepreneur's Blueprint for Crafting a Pitch Deck That Wows Investors

4. Bring metrics

While the above tips will get you in the door and retain people's attention, there's no denying that, at the end of the day, numbers talk. That's why bringing metrics is paramount when going into a business pitch.

One metrics model that will help you most is SMART:

  • Specific: Make sure that your metrics are specific, meaning that they aren't all over the place or vague. They should be relevant and help investors understand your product rather than adding unnecessary information.

  • Measurable: Measurable metrics are ones that are understood across the board. They should be objective and quantitative.

  • Achievable: Investors will only take your pitch seriously if your metrics are believable and achievable.

  • Relevant: Your goals should be relevant to the core of your message, pain points and audience.

  • Timebound: Your pitch should include a realistic timeframe in which it can be achieved. This can also include an outline of several achievable stages.

5. Finish strong

So, you painted a compelling picture, provided solutions to a problem, and you laid out a realistic idea of how to achieve your end goals. Now, how do you finish your pitch without the energy fizzling out?

One great way to finish strong is to end with a call to action that will stir your investors to do something actionable.

First, summarize your pitch succinctly so the full breadth of information is at the forefront of their minds. Then, clearly state what action you're expecting from investors, such as funding, support or advice. Lastly, outline how you plan to continue with their support and how you will use their contributions.

Related: 4 Questions Venture Capital Investors Will Ask in Your Pitch (and How to Answer Them)

Once you finish your pitch, you can breathe a sigh of relief and celebrate the fact that you did one of the hardest things an entrepreneur must do.

Here are some additional tips to perfect your pitch:

  • Avoid industry jargon that may alienate your audience.

  • Speak clearly and enthusiastically.

  • Practice your pitch until you become comfortable with delivering the material.

Keep in mind that succeeding at a winning business pitch isn't an act of chance — it's the culmination of practice, knowledge and dedication. What's more, believing in the power of your own idea makes it easier for others to envision a world with your product in it.

Cyrus Claffey

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Founder of ButterflyMX

Cyrus Claffey is the founder of ButterflyMX, a proptech company focused on smartphone-enabled property access. Claffey has been developing and implementing real estate technologies for more than 15 years. He currently works with some of the largest names in multifamily and CRE.

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