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How to Get Your Startup Ready for Seed Investment


Launching a new business is an exciting and challenging endeavour. It requires hard work, dedication, and, of course, funding.

One of the most common ways for early stage startups to secure funding is through seed investment.

Seed investment is typically provided by angel investors, venture capitalists, and other early stage investors.

It's used to help startups get off the ground and get to the next stage of growth. This blog post will discuss how to get your startup ready for seed investment.

Hand holding a small plant, representing seed funding

1. Create a solid business plan

Before you seek seed investment, you need a solid business plan. A business plan is a piece of document that outlines your business's goals, strategies, and financial projections.

It should include information about your company's products or services, target market, competitive landscape, and financial projections.

Your business plan should be well researched and well written, as it'll be the first thing potential investors want to see.

You'll also have to identify your target market and understand their needs, wants, and pain points. Your business plan should also include a detailed analysis of your competition, including its strengths and weaknesses.

This will help you position your company in a way that makes it stand out from the competition and appeals to potential investors.

A laptop with business plan papers, belonging to a founder ready to seek seed funding

2. Build a great team

Once you have a solid business plan, it's time to build your team. A strong team is critical for the success of any startup.

These Investors want to see that you have a talented and dedicated team that can execute your business plan.

Hire candidates that are passionate about your business

One of the most important things you have to keep in mind when building your team is that it's not just about hiring people with the right skills and experience. It's also about finding people who are passionate about your business and share your vision.

This will help ensure that your team is dedicated and motivated to work hard to achieve your goals. When building your team, it's important to understand each team member's roles and responsibilities clearly.

It's also essential to have a clear line of communication within the team so everyone is aware of what is happening in the company and can provide input and feedback.

Have a working system for performance and employee development

It's also important to have a system in place for performance management and employee development.

This will help ensure that your team is continuously improving and that you can identify and address any issues that may arise.

Creating a positive and inclusive culture

Another important aspect of building your team is creating a positive and inclusive culture. This will help ensure that your team is happy and motivated and that everyone feels like they are part of the company's success.

Encourage collaboration and communication, and create an environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

Make sure your team has the necessary skills and experience to take your business to the next level. Having a diverse team with different backgrounds and skill sets is also crucial, as this will bring fresh ideas to the table.

Team of workers standing and laughing

3. Develop a strong network of contacts

Having a strong network of contacts can also be beneficial in other ways. For example, it can help you stay informed about industry trends and developments and provide access to resources and expertise that may not be available to you otherwise.

When building your network, you must be strategic about who you connect with. Look for people with experience and expertise in your industry and those with connections to potential investors or customers.

It's also important to be authentic and genuine when building your network. Don't just try to connect with people for the sake of it, but rather build relationships based on mutual interests and goals. This will help ensure that your network is made up of people who are truly invested in your success.

Networking can also be done online by using LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to connect with people in your industry.

Additionally, joining online groups and forums can also be beneficial as it can help you stay informed about industry trends and gives you a platform to connect with other entrepreneurs and experts.

When looking for investors, it's also essential to consider their networks and connections. Look for investors who have connections to industry experts, potential customers, or other startups that could benefit from your product or service.

These connections can be incredibly valuable and help you open doors that may have otherwise been closed.

Map with pointers on it, signifying a network

4. Demonstrate traction

Another important step in getting your startup ready for seed investment is demonstrating traction. Traction is a measure of how well your business is doing.

It can include customer testimonials, sales figures, and user engagement. They want to see that your business is gaining momentum and has the potential to grow.

This can include beta testing, pilot programs, or early adopters. Showing traction will give investors confidence that your business is on the right track and has a viable market.

Here are five common ways to demonstrate traction in a seed investment round:

The amount of revenue generated

One of the most straightforward ways to demonstrate traction is by showing how much revenue your startup has generated. This can include revenue from sales, subscriptions, or any other sources.

It shows that people are willing to pay for your product or service, which strongly indicates its value.

Number of customers

Another way to demonstrate traction is by showing how many customers you have. This can include the number of people who have signed up for your service, made a purchase, or otherwise engaged with your company. It shows that there is an actual demand for what you're offering.

Key partnerships

Demonstrating that you have established key partnerships with other companies, organisations, or individuals can also be a great way to show traction.

This can include partnerships with suppliers, distributors, or other businesses critical to your success. It shows that your startup is seen as a valuable partner and that others are willing to invest in your success.

Reviews and testimonials

Reviews and testimonials from customers, industry experts, or other stakeholders can be a powerful way to demonstrate traction. They provide third party validation of your product or service and can help potential investors see the value of what you're offering.

Market research

Finally, market research can be a great way to demonstrate traction. This can include surveys, focus groups, or other methods of gathering information about your target market.

It shows that you have done your homework and deeply understood the market and the potential for your product or service.

A planner with the words "make it happen" in bold

5. Create a solid financial plan

Before you try to secure seed investment, you need to have a solid financial plan in place. This includes projections for revenue and expenses, as well as a clear understanding of your burn rate and when you will reach profitability.

Potential investors will want to see that you clearly understand your financials and a plan to manage them effectively.

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6. Perfect your tailored pitch

Finally, it's important to be prepared to pitch your business to potential investors. A good pitch should be clear, concise, and compelling.

It should include information about your business, team, market, and financial projections.

Practice your pitch beforehand and be ready to answer investors' questions. Be prepared to address any potential risks or challenges your business may face and have a plan to mitigate them.

Young founder in tan leather jacket standing in front of a whiteboard, planning his pitch deck

How to create an investment pitch deck

When creating an investment deck for your startup, it is important to present it in a clear and well researched manner. The goal is to provide investors with enough information about your startup to consider it a potential investment opportunity.

It is worth noting that investors often review pitch decks for a limited amount of time, so you have to make sure the deck is concise, credible, and compelling. Therefore, it is essential to carefully evaluate the deck's content and remove any information that does not contribute to the overall story.

When creating an investment deck, it is important to include the following key elements:

  • Frontpage: This should be a clear introduction that outlines the deck's purpose and provides an overview of the product or service offered by your startup.

  • The problem: A thorough explanation of the problem or opportunity in the market that your startup aims to address, supported by relevant evidence.

  • The solution: You need a detailed description of the solution or approach that your startup plans to take to address the identified problem or opportunity.

  • Demonstrate your USP: An analysis of your startup's unique selling proposition (USP) and how it differentiates from its competitors.

  • Financial projections: Financial projections that provide key milestones are based on realistic and attainable numbers.

  • The team: An introduction to the team behind the startup, highlighting their relevant experience and qualifications.

  • The ask: This should clearly explain the funding request, including the equity being offered and the intended use of the funds, and information on future fundraising plans.

Team gathered around whiteboard, working on pitch

Other considerations

Prepare all legal document

In addition to all the above, keeping your legal documents in order is also important.

This includes incorporation documents, intellectual property agreements, and other legal agreements related to your business. Having all your legal documents in order shows that you.

Prioritise your online presence

It's important to have a solid online presence. Potential investors will often research your company online before deciding whether to invest.

Make sure your website is professional and up-to-date. It should include information about your business, team, and products or services.

You should also have active social media accounts and be active on relevant online forums and communities. This will help you build a strong online presence and establish your company as a thought leader in your industry.

Get a company valuation

Another important factor to consider is your company's valuation. This is the value investors place on your company, which is an important factor that will affect how much funding you can raise.

It's essential to have a realistic valuation that aligns with your business's stage and potential. You can work with a financial advisor or valuation expert to help you determine the right valuation for your company.

Understand investment T&Cs

It's also important to clearly understand the terms and conditions of the investment. This includes the equity, the valuation, the rights of the investors, and the exit strategy.

As a startup, you have to understand the terms of the investment and that they are fair and reasonable for both you and the investors. It's also important to be open and transparent about the risks and challenges that your business may face.

Potential investors will want to know about any potential risks or challenges that could impact your business. Be honest and upfront about these risks and

Be patient

Finally, it's important to be patient. Raising seed investment can take time, and preparing for the process is essential. Be prepared to meet with multiple investors, and be open to feedback and constructive criticism.

It's also important to be patient and not rush into an investment that isn't the right fit for your business.

Final thoughts

Preparing your startup for seed investment requires a deal of preparation and hard work on your end.

You'll need a solid business plan, a strong team, a good network of contacts, traction, a solid financial plan, and a strong online presence.

Additionally, it's important to understand your company's valuation and the terms and conditions of the investment, be transparent about the risks and challenges and be patient.

By following these guidelines, you'll be well on securing seed investment for your startup. It's important to remember that raising seed investment is just one step in building a successful business.

As a startup, you must constantly look for ways to improve, grow and stay focused on your goals and objectives. With hard work, dedication, and a bit of luck, you'll be able to take your startup to the next level and achieve success.

We know we've been on about how seed investment can help your startup succeed. That's why I wanted to remind you about our School of Startups.

It's a great place to find valuable information and tools that can help you take your business to the next level. It's worth checking out!

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