Reduce fear and increase greed A properly selected audience will have minimal initial bias against you and maximum in your favor. But you still have to rise above the dozens (and dozens) of pitches that they likely hear every month. If you are in an accelerator or pitch competition, you don’t even have the benefit …

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TUNE vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

Be strategic in your communications Strategic communications should inform your tactics. The two examples below contrast between a tactical approach to communications and a strategic approach: Know what you want Achieving your goals is difficult if you are working at cross purposes with yourself, your family or your team. Long before you pitch to an …

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Q05 vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

Is it real, or is it vaporware? No one wants to waste their time and money on something that evaporates before they can use it. There are a number of ways that you can prove – or at least validate – that your company is real and growing. In approximate order of decreasing power to …

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Q04 vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

Be open about what (not how) Many entrepreneurs worry about pitching or discussing their ideas because they fear those ideas will be stolen or copied. There are two very strong arguments against this worry: If your idea is so easy to duplicate that its mere mention is enough for someone else to commercialize it quickly, …

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Q03 vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

There are a number of common pitfalls in presenting your competitive advantage: Claiming that you have no competition Focusing on features rather than benefits Addressing only a subset of the competition Your customer wants their problems solved. To first order, they do not care how you solve them, just that you make them go away. …

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Q02 vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

Many entrepreneurs push back on several aspects of my advice on pitching their solution: They worry about revealing their “secret sauce” They think they are “dumbing down” their ideas for insufficiently sophisticated audiences They try to teach technology instead of engaging the audience and use an inappropriate level of jargon Solve the problem If you …

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Q01 vPlano: DO’S & DON’TS

The standard approach to answering Question 1 is to search the Internet and business libraries for marketing studies that establish billion dollar markets for target markets. Doing this kind of research is useful for reality checks and establishing long term opportunities, but this type of study is of very limited value when pitching an early …

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