How to Perfect Your Business Pitch and Win $10,000
Black Enterprise Magazine July/August 2018 Issue

Sixty-seconds, center stage, your business model, and three judges.

Do you know what it takes to perfect a pitch worth $10,000? If you want to win investors over you might not have all of the time in the world. In fact, you might have a minute or less to convince them that your business is worth the investment.

This year at the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit, four contestants (to be announced at a later time, stay tuned!) will have the opportunity to pitch their ideas for big bucks and one lucky person will walk away with a $10,000 check. That is just enough money to help them take their business to the next level.

If you are looking to pitch your idea to investors anytime soon, here are some tips to help you prepare for your moment in the room full of sharks.

1. Do your research

In addition to mustering up courage, pitching to level up your business requires a lot of preparation. With any type of formal presentation, doing your research is key. Know the ins and outs of your industry and where your business fits into it.

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2. Demonstrate how your product or service adds value that people can’t get elsewhere

When Angel Rich pitched WealthyLife, the financial literacy gaming app, at the 2017 Black Enterprise elevator pitch competition, she presented a fresh product that created equal opportunities for people to become financially savvy.

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3. Be about your business

That means that you need to know your numbers, be able to explain your business model and profit margins.

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4. Keep it succinct

Once the clock starts ticking, you’ll have 60 seconds to use wisely. So, you should be able to communicate clearly what it is that you have to offer. Practice your pace, being clear, and your inflections while speaking. In other words, keep it short and sweet.

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5. Be ready to pitch

Ditch your perfectly scripted mindset. You want to make sure that you are compelling, informative, and have a crafted pitch—not a scripted one. Take a deep breath and let it flow. Trust and believe that investors know when you’re on edge and it is off-putting.

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To see our contestants take the stage and compete for our $10,000 prize to help them elevate their business, join us at the Entrepreneurs Summit this June in Charlotte.

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Lydia Blanco

Lydia T. Blanco is a proud Afro-Latinx digital-first multimedia journalist with a strong passion for truthful storytelling, photography and content strategy. Blanco is a 2016 graduate of Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism and proud alumna of Bennett College for Women. At Columbia, her coursework included media management, tactical technology reporting, mobile video storytelling, digital content strategy, photojournalism and feature writing. She covered the ethnic beat of the Senegalese community in Harlem concentrating on business and religion. Her thesis is a 5,000-word A.P Style report exploring faith, justice and activism through a Harlem church. She received one of two honors awards in the Ethics of Journalism class with Dean Steve Coll. Blanco has experience in telling stories about social justice, health and wellness and technology with an emphasis in social impact. Her three years of experience in non-profit media have helped to shape her voracious storytelling as well as her digital and social media marketing skills.


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