ABC's hit show, Shark Tank is holding a casting call about 2 hours from South Bend in Chicago on May 9th at the Shedd Aquarium, and it should be a great opportunity for all of our entrepreneurs at Notre Dame and specifically ESTEEM to try out to be the next contestant. Whether or not you are chosen, this opportunity is a great networking chance and a great place to test out your pitching skills. Here we have some tips we have gathered from watching our favorite entrepreneurship show!
1) Show the need: In an interview with the sharks they responded to the question, "What makes a good business idea great?" by nearly unanimously saying it solves a need in the marketplace. If you can show how your product solves a problem, satisfies a need or improves quality of life, you have a pretty good start at moving forward… but that is just the tip of the iceberg.
2) Understand Your Market and Your Numbers: A trendy logo and a hip tagline isn't going to impress anyone on Shark Tank. You need to understand your market, your customers, any patents currently out there or patents that can be had, and not least, you need to know how much you are worth. They are not going to take your first offer, know how much you are able to negotiate. This is not a game show, you are dealing with industry professionals who know how to build and buy companies - be prepared. Daymond John says, the first step and entrepreneur can do is, "educate themselves in the product and the industry they are attempting to enter."
3) Be Nice: It's something that is often lost in the mix, especially because the sharks tend to be kind of unlikable. Being likable and a savvy business person is a rare quality, and the sharks know that so they often reward it. Get passionate and show that you are person who should be running this business.
So with these tips, and there are certainly many more tips out there, head out to Chicago on May 9th and give it your best shot! We hope to see some of you on the little screen soon!