Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch Season 4 Episode 2: 'How Does She Make Money If It's All Free?'

This episode features a lot of failed pitches, but there are lessons in every failure.

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2 min read

Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch invites ambitious entrepreneurs to step into the Entrepreneur Elevator, then gives them 60 seconds to pique the judges’ interest. It’s a high-pressure, fast-paced environment in which startup founders need to race the clock while maintaining their composure to make a clear, deliberate pitch that covers at least three essential components:

  1. Defining the company
  2. Making the request
  3. Specifying what the investment money will be used for

The investors watch the pitch through a video livestream while the elevator ascends to the boardroom floor. Once the 60 seconds are up, the group votes on whether to open the doors or send the founder back down and pass on investing.

Related: Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch Season 4 Episode 1: 'You Attacked Me!'

This episode proves just how difficult it can be to nail your pitch and impress potential investors. Five founders and entrepreneurs appear on the show, and all leave without securing the investments they came for.

However, their failures provide great lessons that you can use when it's your turn to pitch. For example, the first founder on this episode has what the judges call "a crazy valuation" of her business, which leads her to ask much more of the judges than they are willing to offer. When you consider your own company, try to be as reasonable and objective as you can when trying to determine how much it might be worth. Even if you think your idea could become a billion-dollar business some day, you need to understand the risks that investors have to take and be willing to work with them.

You also need to differentiate your business within your industry. If you can't explain why you're the only one who can offer what you have, and why you can disrupt an established marketplace, then you can't expect investors to bet on you against the field.

Perhaps most importantly, you need to prove how an investor can expect to get a return on investment. It's one thing to have a great idea, but it's something else entirely to run a business that generates profit. Prove that you know the difference and you'll be well on your way.

To learn more great lessons about refining your pitch, click play.

Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch in partnership with Sports 1 Marketing streams Wednesdays on entrepreneur.com. Follow Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch on Facebook, YouTube and IGTV.

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