Pitch Your Start-Up to Win Cash for Your Business - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine July/August 2018 Issue

Going to the bank for a business loan is out of the question! Asking for money from family and friends won’t be enough and your crowdfunding campaign flopped! So where do you go to get the money to start or expand your business? Have you ever considered business pitch competitions?

These awesome events are happening all across the United States, allowing entrepreneurs from all walks of life access to much-needed capital to take their enterprise to the next level. Business pitch contests usually require an application and a video submission. The reviewing committee is looking for energy and passion regarding your business venture. If selected, the entrepreneur is required to give an in person elevator pitch that can last 60 seconds to a few minutes. During this time, the entrepreneur must describe the business to a group of investors or judges in a way that is clear, concise, and compelling!

From my experience, pitch competitions are generally apart of a bigger business conference so entrepreneurs can expect to pitch in front of the investors, judges, and/or a live audience.

After the preliminary round, a few entrepreneurs are eliminated and the remaining business owners have a second opportunity (usually less time) to impress the investors with a final business pitch!

The grand prize? Anything from cash (that you normally don’t have to pay back), office space, mentorship, website development, expert feedback on your product or service, and free publicity.

I have personally won over $33,000 in business pitch competitions and highly suggest entrepreneurs consider it when they need seed money to start or expand their business.

Female entrepreneurs should really take advantage of business pitch competitions. With only 2% of women-owned enterprises receiving a financial investment, this could be the exact cash infusion needed to survive and thrive.

I know you are probably thinking, “what can I say in a few seconds or minutes to take home the cash?” Or, maybe you are wondering, “where can I find these pitch competitions?”

I find the majority of my business pitch competitions using the hashtag (#BusinessPitchCompetition) on social media and online by doing a keyword search using “Business Pitch Competitions”.

From my personal experience, here is what you need to include in a powerful business pitch:

P:  Passion

Show excitement, energy, and enthusiasm about your business

I: Investment

How much money do you need?

T: Twist

What makes your business different or unique?

C: Confidence

Be bold and brilliant when pitching to the investors and audience.

H: How will you use the funds

Include elements of P.I.T.C.H when you speak to compete for start-up cash and I guarantee it will increase your chances of taking home the cash prize! Also, review the rules and regulations in detail. You want to be clear on how much time you have to pitch and what details of your business they want included when you compete.

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Selena Hill

Selena Hill is the Digital Editor at Black Enterprise and an award-winning multi-media journalist.


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