At the young age of 32-years-old, Angela Benton is already well know in the tech community and Silicon Valley. Benton not only is the founder of BlackWeb20, but is also the founder of NewME Accelerator. NewMe Accelerator has helped Black tech start-ups earn nearly $8M in funding, and now they’re partnering with Clutch to find the #NEXTBIGTECHIDEA.
But before you rush off to sign up, Angela has offered 3 simple tips on how to succeed in getting your idea funded:
1. Solve a Real Problem
Investors get pitched all day every day on pretty much everything under the sun. If you have an idea that you want to raise money for, start with solving a real problem. While starting another photo sharing app might be cool, what real world problem/need is it really solving? Also ask yourself if your idea is actually just a feature that can easily be implemented by a larger competitor—and put you out of business. Identifying how you will make people’s lives easier or better is the first step in getting an investor’s attention and will differentiate you for the ‘Mr. Me Too’s’ she’s currently getting pitched.
2. Build Something
So now you have a great idea that solves a real problem, your next step is to actually build something. Most people think, “But I need the money to actually build something!” What seems like a ‘chicken or egg’ problem actually isn’t. What you need to put your time and energy into is building something that is minimally acceptable for your customer. That means it might not be a fully blown-out product. You need to narrow down your idea to the basic features that will make your product functional and “hack it” or “fake it til you make it.” Generally this means you will use the resources you have available: Woo forms, manual processes, templates/themes, freelance developers, etc. to get something up and running. It’s important NOT to put a significant amount of time in this step simply because it’s still an experiment and you don’t know if it can become a real business yet.
3. Get Traction
Traction means users or paying customers. It’s better if it’s both! Let’s be honest. Investors won’t give you ANY money for your idea, $5 or $1MM, if they don’t know how they will be able to make it back. The easiest way to show this is to prove that someone is willing to pay you for a product and/or service and that the product/service that you are selling is scalable. Having a scalable product/service simply means there is a large enough market size. Investors are looking for BIG opportunities, so your market size will be looked at as a reflection of the business opportunity you are presenting.
Good luck! Register here and just a fyi, your ideas are protected. They won’t get jacked!