When it comes to money and big-ticket investments, trust plays an extremely important role. People want to make sure they put their money in the hands of those they can trust. The same goes for partnerships and investments in the business. While you can definitely find investors who can help fund your business, on LinkedIn, having them connect with you and consider your proposal is a different ball game altogether.
If your business case is strong & you know your strengths and weaknesses, then you know you make a winning pitch to an angel investor or a venture capitalist. However, to get there, you need to get a few things right first. One of them being a list of the right investors for your business and a winning LinkedIn profile.
Build an attractive and honest profile
LinkedIn provides business owners, startups and entrepreneurs a great platform to network with the crème-de-la-crème of their respective industries. This helps budding and serial entrepreneurs to network, connect, and pitch their business cases to investors in their industry. However, to get the investors to take an interest is a task in itself. There are too many people on the platform bombarding them with connection requests already. What makes your profile stand out and seem of interest to the investor you wish to connect with? You don’t have one yet? Here’s how you can build one.
Create a stunning profile that becomes your authentic voice on this busy business platform. LinkedIn makes creating a great profile easy by walking you through steps that ask you to fill sections about your work profile, your past experiences, education, certifications, recommendations and so on.
However, filling in these sections just makes sure that you have added all the information that is required to be known about you. That is distinctly different from actually “knowing you.” You can work on this differentiator while writing the Bio/Summary on your LinkedIn profile.
Treat this section as something that you would say to a formal connection or let’s say, an investor, to introduce yourself when you meet them for the first time. Though many professionals prefer writing their bios in the third person, it is preferable to write it in the first person. This gives the feeling of being spoken to in the first person to the reader.
Keep the bio lucid and crisp. Give the reader enough to know you, yet be curious to learn more about you. Highlight some achievements and a few things that make you, “you.”
This kind of bio can help people feel connected to you. They see ‘the’ honesty as something they can build a great business relationship on, and this is just the start.
Coming to the profile picture, make sure you have a clear head-shot of yourself, preferably one with a smile, which makes you look approachable and trustworthy. The cover photo, too, should reflect what you do and should work like a foreword to your entire profile.
When you send a connection request to an investor or venture capitalist, the chances are that they will scan your LinkedIn page to find out more about you before they decide to accept your connection request. It is important to have a page ready, which conveys who you are as a person to help build trust and acceptance.
Finding the right investors
Once your profile is ready, it is time to find out the investors and VCs best suited for your business. To do this, you will need to conduct a thorough, targeted, filtered LI search.
In the LinkedIn search bar, write the name of the industry or product you deal in. Next, choose 2nd and 3rd degree connections from the drop-down list.
Next, you will need to address all the filters. Under the head “company,” enter “Venture,” “Investors,” “Capital,” and “Holdings.”
Check the countries you want to search in. Now hit enter.
The search results you receive are the investors who are most likely to take an interest in your business as they dabble in the same industry.
Once you have found the right investors for your business on LinkedIn, it is time to reach out to them and connect.
In case you know a mutual connection who knows the investor, it is always better to ask for an introduction to getting connected with the said investor. This gives a boost to the networking process and gives you a head-start in creating a trustworthy business relationship with them.
Introduce yourself but do not pitch
Pitching to a person right away, asking them for their money, is not the best way to start a conversation on a business networking platform. Although the investor might have gone through your profile before accepting your request, that does not mean they know you enough to invest in you. It is important to spend some time understanding each other’s requirements and how you both can mutually benefit from each other; this is crucial in creating a strong foundation.
Before you reach out to them, go through their profile, and find out more about their life, works, likes, and dislikes. What you don’t find on their profile, you can make up from studying their posts on LI. The information you thus collect will help you connect with them easily.
For example, if you see you have matching interests or you went to the same university, you can use that topic as an icebreaker before jumping straight to business.
When you finally send them an InMail or message, keep it short and mention something that builds an immediate connection. For example:
“We had met at a seminar last month where you spoke about so and so.”
“I read your recent blog post, and really liked the part where you wrote so and so.”
Have something in common? Don’t forget to mention it in the email.
Keep in touch with them. It is possible they have a million things on their plate, so they might not revert immediately. Be patient but do follow up. A week should work perfectly fine.
Follow these LinkedIn strategy steps well to ensure you build your network of investors and VCs who can not only help you fund your business but also provide you with critical life and business lessons that will help you and your business grow, exponentially.
For bespoke social media marketing advice to take full advantage of the opportunities available to you via #LinkedIn, schedule an initial phone consultation here: https://calendly.com/melaniegoodmantrevisan/call