An Executive Summary, A PowerPoint Prezo and A Website – You Better Go for It!

29 Jun

By Dennis Ford, Founder & CEO, Life Science Nation; Creator of RESI Conference Series

If you’re raising funds for your life science company, you will need a few key elements: a list of investor targets, a reliable outreach process, and a full set of marketing materials. In this article, we’ll explore how providing an executive summary, PowerPoint deck and an investor-centric website enables you to get meetings.

When fundraising, LSN recommends that you use our Investor Platform to get a Global Target List (GTL) of investors that are a fit for your stage of development and product. Typically we will aggregate 300-400 global targets. In my book “The Life Science Executive’s Fundraising Manifesto” I go into detail regarding how to canvass these targets through phone and email. The GTL will have 10 different types of investors from family offices, global PE and pharma firms, and everything in between. Generally their investment thesis is either very open, which I call “opportunistic”, or very focused, which I call “mandate specific”. The vehicles we use to go after and canvass this target list are the executive summary, the PowerPoint presentation and the website.

These three pieces of content have one purpose and that is to provide enough information to get the target investor/partner to have a meeting with you and start a dialogue. Essentially the executive summary, the PowerPoint pitch deck, and the website are your sales pitch in different forms – yes, this is a sales pitch, because you are selling! It’s important to have different forms for this sales pitch because some investors would prefer to read the exec summary, and some prefer to view the pitch deck – investors vary in this regard and you need to be able to engage as many of them as possible. The point of going after a target that is a fit for you is to get them to read either or both and then click and go to your website.

The website is a full, deep sales pitch on you, your company and products. It needs to offer a “deep dive” on the company and the team. If you make it cursory and light and don’t make it detailed, you have a problem, as you can’t know the reader. But it’s equally bad to make the website too huge and densely technical. What you have to do is provide enough data for them to decide to have the first call with you. That’s the whole point – to provide enough information to create interest that will cause the target investor to want to start the dialogue. The website has to be a deep dive on your PowerPoint pitch – like a surrogate of you giving the pitch.

If done right and the message comes across, then the target partner will be able to assess that you’re a good fit and decide to have a conversation with you. The executive summary, the PowerPoint and the website are all created for one reason…to give to a target for perusal to determine if there’s enough compelling info there to be worth a first meeting.

I have been doing this for 10 years with amazing success. LSN’s I-Bank Boston Innovation Capital has had 5 clients over the last 18 months; one is about to close their round, and 4 are in due diligence with investors. Every one of these clients followed the recipe I just laid out. Everyone will tell you that the investor/partners they thought they would go after and the ones they wound up with were different than originally thought. I like to stick with the recipe that we know works and allow people to take advantage of our experience with canvassing investor partners and raising capital that you follow our proven and tested method.

All of the above information isn’t coming from my imagination. It is what investors and partners have told us regarding how they evaluate inquiries and decide to meet people. Use your branding and messaging to be a beacon to the investor and partner world while you can. The company that charges ahead the fastest wins…the startups that overthink, overanalyze, and try to control the marketing campaign with a few ‘rifle shots’ at familiar targets get fewer meetings. Raising capital is a numbers game and you need to go after all the investors you can that are a possible fit, and hit them with the best marketing package that you’ve got.

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