"We have 4 weeks until cash-out, can you invest?"
There's a fine line between distressed investing and venture capital.
In both scenarios, the cash may only land 4 weeks before the business runs out of money.
The fundamental difference with VC is that the conversations probably started 18-24 months prior.
With distressed, it may have only been 1-2 weeks ago and businesses pay dearly for this.
If you're looking for solid fundraising advice listen to LinkedIn influencer and founder of Foundraisr, Prateek Sanjay.
Prateek specialises in helping make people understood in a way that is relevant to people other than them.
Prateek's journey started in the Wealth Management division at UBS in New York where his role was to ensure client concerns were understood. Later on it was explaining new M&A department projects to the Board of a EUR 4bn telecoms company. Then at a start-up fundraising consulting firm, Prateek's job was to convert founder notes into something that investors understood. In his subsequent freelance career, Prateek would convert Deeptech language into 'English.' Prateek also spent a considerable amount of time writing grant applications where he translated what scientists and engineers said into normal words that people understood. Finally, working as a sales person at an app development agency, Prateek had to understand what the actual idea was so that the technical and product team could actually build it. Based on his messaging superpowers, Prateek was then asked to write short cold emails to investors to get meetings. No surprises his conversion rates were high and this service is very much in demand so Prateek created Foundraisr to do it full time.
Main topics and learnings:-
1. Researching and finding customer or investor names:
1.1. Need a process to find the financial stability of each customer.
1.2. Check customer willingness and ability to pay - what have they raised and what for?
1.3. Investors - check what their convictions are.
1.4. Use a sniper rifle approach, never a shotgun!
1.5. Specify the relevance of your offering in the first 2 lines.
1.6. Beware of niche sectors. Sometimes there's just not enough potential leads.
1.7. First impressions count - don't reach out too early.
1.8. Build your contact list 12 months before you need them. Trying to close things quickly sends out a negative signal.
2. Drafting amazing copy:
2.1. Prateek's most popular social media posts are time and money saving hacks.
2.2. Create content that is instantly actionable, insightful and deliver instant results.
2.3. Deliver value in the first 4 lines, don't wait until later in the post.
2.4. Best format - half lines of text using bullets and nothing that wraps onto two lines. Must look like classroom notes
2.5. Content guide:
2.5.1. 'Desired outcome you will get if you read this.'
2.5.2. Instructions on what to do.
2.5.4. Call to conversion - e.g. "let me know in the comments."
2.6. When doing prospecting, look for buying signals using social listening tools.
2.7. Social selling is by far the best way to prospect.
3. Document access and navigation:
3.1. Use asynchronous communications to save you and investors time. E.g. Place videos, documents, how-to-guide on Journey.io / Google Drive / Trumpet / Sharepoint / Dropbox.
3.2. Calendly is helpful but meeting time is finite and not everyone can remember every meeting they've had.
3.3. Make sure your projections are realistic if you're committing them to writing.
3.4. Stay away from judgemental investors.
Book a phone call with Prateek via the link on his LinkedIn.