15 Tips for a More Successful Investor Meeting

In their effort to impress institutional investors, managers labor tirelessly over their pitch books, spending dozens of hours micro-analyzing every word, every graph.

And then they forgo any chance of ever raising any money within 3 minutes of walking into a room with an investor.

Here are 15 tips on how to better manage a meeting with an investor

  1. Refrain from handing out your deck at the outset of a meeting, if you can. The investor doesn’t know whether to listen to what you are saying, or look at the deck. More often than not, neither happens.
  2. Ask how much time you have been allotted. This will allow you to manage how you structure the conversation. You will treat things differently if you have 15 minutes over 60 minutes.
  3. Be humble. There is a good chance that someone is out there doing what you are doing better than you are.
  4. Always try to position yourself to the right of the primary contact. It is a lot easier to shake hands at the end of the meeting.
  5. If someone enters or leaves the meeting, stand up. It is old school, but it is respectful.
  6. Avoid the word “but”.
  7. Rely on your presentation as little as possible. If you can’t carry the meeting without visual aids, you are doing something wrong.
  8. Avoid complex graphs. Although they make sense to you, they disrupt the flow of a meeting.
  9. If someone looks at their watch, it is sign that they are not engaged. “Watch” for this.
  10. Be prepared to answer questions with short succinct answers. “Why should we invest with you?” “You should invest with us for these three reasons: 1, 2, 3.” The 1, 2, and 3 should be short answers and to the point. Believe me, this takes practice.
  11. Lean in.
  12. Regardless if you are speaking or not, stay off your phone. No member of your team should be checking texts or emails during the meeting. It shows lack of focus and it is demeaning for those you are presenting to.
  13. Mirror the style of the primary contact. If he or she talks slow, talk slow back, etc. This is really important, but very few people consciously do it. If you do, you will connect more effectively.
  14. Smile. Big point.
  15. Always end the meeting with a reason to re-connect. “Thank you for your time. Let me follow up with ____________.” Doesn’t really matter what the “with” is.

By Kyle Dunn