Got an app idea? Planning to take it off the ground?
Well, it won’t be possible without money. You will need funding to design your app, to develop it and of course to market it to create a buzz around your business.
So, what’s the right way to pitch your app and get that much-needed funding? Let me be clear here! Raising money for your app idea isn’t very easy.
To secure the much-needed amount of funding, you must know:
However, that’s the short version. Having experience of more than 10 years in the mobile app development industry, I know that the process of getting the funding for an app is not as easy as a walk in the park. So, let’s explore all that you need to do for the same.
Since smartphones have been around for a long while, it appears like there is an application for almost everything. And, investors won’t put resources into any random application idea that you present to them.
So, before you even find the investors in front of whom you are planning to present your app idea – you need to plan a lot. Here are a few things on which you must do some research before moving ahead:
1.Know Your App’s Niche
Investors would prefer not to fund an application idea that as of now exists. So, it’s essential that you do the research on your end and know everything about the competitive landscape of your application’s market before you approach any investor. Remember, investors want to see the following things about your niche market:
It’s vital that you truly research to know everything about your application industry. Investors never fund less researched ideas. They need details on who the audience is, what issue are you solving for them, what features your application includes and the list of details can continue endlessly. So, narrow down your application idea so that investors can invest in your venture confidently.
2.Brand Your App
Now that you know the nitty-gritty of your application, it’s time to create branding around it. Having a nicely designed logo or website for your application shows investors that you are very serious about it and have placed a lot of thought into your vision. Branding helps investors in visualizing your idea instead of thinking that it is a vague idea.
At the center of each business is their branding; if all else fails, depend on it.
3.Create a Demo or MVP
Just like branding lets investors visualize your brand, creating a prototype or MVP of your application makes your idea tangible. Having an MVP also shows that you are passionate about your idea and is eager to take it off-the-ground. Also, while pitching an app idea to investors remember:
“Investors Often Lack time. So, Don’t Bore them with Stories – Show Them a Prototype.”
It also offers investors a chance to see and associate with your idea rather than simply listening to you aimlessly about it. Also, making a prototype of your application is very simple. All you have to do is:
Once you have the prototype ready – your fundraising game becomes much stronger.
Now that you are done with all the preparations – it is time to find the right investors for funding your app. Now let’s explore how you can do that.
A startup gets an idea, pitches an app and gets the required funding. Boom! It’s a Win-Win.
Are you impressed with such successful fundraising stories? Well, things like this don’t happen in reality.
There are just a couple of founders in the world who have the credibility, reputation and establish network to make such things happen consistently. Much of the time, there is a lot of work in the middle of these steps.
To start with, you have to find out the ways using which you can reach the right investors for your app. Now the question is “how to find the right investors for your app?” Let’s find out:
According to Mark Suster – founder of VC firm Upfront Ventures – here is a list of people who can help you find the right investors:
1.Startup-Oriented Corporate Lawyers
VCs work with corporate attorneys quite often, so setting up a relationship with them can deliver profits. According to Suster, the majority of the early stage corporate lawyers have the same circles as the best VCs.
Recruiters often have a strong social network, from people of the startup community to the VCs and angels that back them – everybody is in contact with them and you can take benefits of the same.
One of the best places to begin with a presentation is a VC’s portfolio. If you have a CEO utilizing your product, and their organization is funded by a VC who lines up with your interests, contact that CEO and build a relationship.
A number of Venture Capitalists list their portfolio companies on their sites, so it isn’t very difficult to find who’s associated with whom.
But, at the same time, you shouldn’t contact Mark Zuckerberg to make your introduction to the people who helped his seed round—connect with an early stage founder or somebody who is as of now in your network.
Founders who have fund-raised in the past are likely associated with a bunch of investors in their pursuit. Use a network like LinkedIn or AngelList to see who among your connections is connected with potential investors and never hesitate in asking for an introduction.
5.Former Colleagues and Peers
If you have a connection who worked with a VC in the past they can also help you in connection with the same. And it can be anyone – a friend or a former co-worker.
6.Other Investors in the Industry
While investors are competitive in nature, they are also very community oriented. Numerous startups have a number of investors and as a result, those investors have built up connections through networking, board meetings and events.
In case you’re as of now in contact with some of the investors, don’t be reluctant to ask them whether they know any other person who may be keen on learning more about your app idea.
As per Paul Graham, a long-term Silicon Valley investor, tech startup founders or owners generally make the mistake of trying to impress investors with a pitch only.
However, the truth is, what impresses investors is the combination of a killer Startup pitch deck and you (the Founder) representing it in a confident way. He says:
It is not just the idea that investors invest in – it’s you.
A number of investors decide in the first few minutes that you are a loser or a winner, and once their mind is set it becomes difficult to change. Every idea has reasons – to invest in it and to not invest in it. If investors believe you are a winner they focus on the former else they will focus on the latter.
That is the reason it’s so important to nail it all in the first few minutes.
Look in the eyes of investors. Shake Hands. Act Confidently. Be prepared. Be enthusiastic. Also, believe that the individual on the opposite side of the table is just another person like you – not a ghost. When you’ve handled those fundamentals of establishing a decent first impression, deliver your pitch deck that moves the dreams you have for the application over to the potential investors.
Now, what should be in your Startup pitch deck? As per the folks at Sequoia Capital, you must include the following things in your pitch deck:
Boom. That’s it. All you need to do now is present your Startup Pitch Deck inside a couple of minutes.
To conclude the above discussion, all I can say is Getting an investment can be tough and you might have to invest some time in getting it – the right way. But, you shouldn’t give up.
Continue reaching out to the right investors with insightful data. If you are prepared and have confidence in your app idea – it is just a matter of time before you get that much-needed funding. All the very best!
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Nikhil Bansal is the Founder and CEO of Apptunix, a leading Software Development Company helping startups as well as brands in streamlining their business processes with intuitive and powerful mobile apps. After working in the iOS app development industry for more than 10 years, he is now well-equipped with excellent problem-solving and decision-making techniques.
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