Ask “Big” For Startup Funding—Kanye Style

A 'no" doesn't mean 'never'

Kanye-west-boycotting-grammys-black-enterprise

Sometimes it takes sheer boldness for success.

Kanye West’s plea to Mark Zuckerberg for $1 billion via Twitter to invest in “Kanye ideas” is as bold as a funding request can get.

[RELATED: What Matters Most to Venture Capitalists]

While asking a billionaire for money may get the rest of us kicked off of Twitter for violating The Twitter Rules against harassment, you do have to think and ask “big” when seeking funding for your startup dream. Here are advice tidbits from some of the most seasoned startup advisers around on how you can “ask big” like Kanye, when dealing with investors:

Thomas Wooldridge, Consultant, Relamark.com:
  • Entrepreneurs need to be truly passionate about their business.
  •  [And have an] understanding that they have a voice and need to be heard.
Matt Wilson, co-founder of travel company Under30Experiences.com:
  • Remember that money is not a real thing, it’s just a piece of paper… you are only asking for someone to write their name on a piece of paper for you and cut you that check!
  • The world is small and people are more willing to share their contacts than you think!
Shontaye Hawkins, MBA, Business Coach, ProfitIsTheNewBlack
  • If you don’t ask for the money, the answer will always be no whether you’re dealing with an investor or a potential client.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback on your pitch if you don’t receive funding initially. “No,” doesn’t mean “never,” so learn as much as you can so you can improve your pitch.

Bob Smith, RSA Marketing, and former president of IAAE (The International African American Entrepreneurs Association) based in D.C.

  • The key to having the b—s of Kanye is to hang around people who think big and have no problem asking.
Edward Sturm, startup founder and consultant:
  • Kanye takes a lot of chances. This isn’t the first time Kanye’s asked an important figure to invest in him and this won’t be the last.
  • Suppose Zuckerberg says no, Kanye will continue asking people and eventually he’ll get his way. Maybe Zuckerberg will give $500mm, or maybe he’ll give the full $1 billion.