Startup Pitches: The Balancing Act of Vision vs Valuation

Author: Notre Dame ESTEEM


It happens often that startups, after the excitement of getting started begins to fade, startups begin quickly thinking of how much their company is worth. It's natural since most startups begin with very little money that finding investors is important, however too often startups see the money as the end and not just as the means to get to the end. If you're interested in startups because the money is the end, investors will likely smell it… and frankly, you'll probably tell them in your pitch. 

It's necessary to discuss customer validation, market size and saturation, and all of that, however valuation should not be something that comes up during a pitch at all. The money is not what you're looking for, you've got bigger plans than simply cashing out; you have a vision. That vision should focus on why the market needs your product, how you will make lives easier or better, and what the next steps are for truly fulfilling that vision. The money is just how you'll get there. 

However, the problem with the idea of pitching vision above all else is that some startups will use it as an excuse to move past the pitch. They'll never sell because they are spending to much time explaining the product and vision. Be sure not to do this. The balancing act is important - pitch the vision and close with how they can be a part of your vision and help fulfill your vision by investing.

Obviously, having a good vision and a good product is paramount to any pitch techniques, any good investor will quickly move past a product with no substance. However, if you have a solid vision and great product, do not do your product and vision a disservice by talking only about money. This is your baby, make sure you are showing it off.