There may be a whole lot of entertainment in Shark Tank, but there are business lessons from shark tank to be learned too. What is Shark Tank you may ask? Shark Tank is a reality TV show that features real successful, filthy rich capitalists who invest their money in great business ideas.
These are the Sharks; usually, six of them, and entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to them for funding. Some of them are laughed at, humiliated or even insulted, but they go back home with good business advice nonetheless.
Most of them, however, do get hundreds of thousands in funding, and there are several things you can learn from this.
Know the Numbers
Most entrepreneurs that come on the show starts with some incredible numbers. They have prepared themselves with the math and percentages as if they knew them by heart. However, as soon as the sharks delve deeper into breaking down these numbers, they have no idea what to say.
You need to know all the numbers relating to sales, relevant costs, gross margins, and the story behind them. It’s not enough for you to know how much you need from an investor.
It’s Not All About the Numbers
Numbers always count, but that’s not all your pitch should involve. There are so many reasons why entrepreneurs should watch Shark Tank. It shows you as an entrepreneur how much more detail you should focus on.
This is because although an investor would care about the numbers, they have more interest in the potential growth of your business. This means they will look closer into the product and the overall model of your business before they make an offer.
Sell your dream, and not sales. An investor can tell if you have a good product by your background, how much expertise you have in the field, and whether you have patented the idea
Always Think Like A Customer
Start thinking of the business in the customers perspective. This will make it easier for you to address the problems and come up with lasting solutions. Marketing will also get super easy once you know that its a product or service customers are looking for.
Some of the questions you may need to ask yourself include what problems your business can solve, why customers would choose your product and not a competitors’, whether there are other products in the market solving the same problem, why the product is important to you, and how you can change your customers lives. With answers to these questions, you’ll have a solid marketing plan.
Know The Business Inside Out
You need complete familiarity with the product, which will place you in a good position to answer any questions about it. If you went to the Sharks, they would grill you about it, to find out how much you know about your own venture. Unless you can show how serious you are about your business, no one will take you seriously.
An entrepreneur with an incredible story is likely to capture attention. How did you come up with the idea? What are the struggles you have come across so far? Is there a deeper meaning into it for you? Is there a market for it? Whether you only have an idea, a startup, or an already established business, you need to prove that there is a viable market for what you are trying to sell.
Proving demands exists makes you and your business very attractive to investors, so always test before you invest. If you can get the product on the shelves and make it stay, it means that customers are actually using it.
Learn How To Pitch
One of the major lessons from Shark Tank you need to learn is how to pitch. Even if you decide to bootstrap your business, at some point, you’ll need investors, and a good pitch can go a long way.
You may not pitch to the sharks, but you need to learn how to sell yourself and your business to potential investors, partners, employees, and even customers. More than anything else, learn how to communicate your vision and do it right the first time to make a lasting impression.
Know Your Potential Investors
If you are planning to pitch the Sharks, you need to know as much about them as you can, especially when it comes to business. You’ll not only know what kind of questions to expect from them, but you’ll have a vague idea of what kind of business you can do together.
It’ll also be easier to customize the pitch and know exactly what to say to capture their attention. Even if you don’t strike a deal, you will learn a great deal from them, especially if you pitch ideas to investors in the same line of business.
As you may have noted from watching the show, most of the investors that come in with a bad attitude and don’t know how to take criticisms rarely get any kind of deal. You may think that you are impressing the investors when bragging about your accomplishments, but there is a very thin line between confidence and arrogance.
Potential investors know where to draw that line. This does not by any means mean that you need to look timid or meek; what you need is a positive attitude. Make your potential investors like you and want to do business with you
Always Have Realistic Financial Goals
It’s okay to be ambitious but never oversell or overestimate when pitching your business to investors. Great investors will pick it up real quick if you overshoot numbers so have realistic goals and stick to them. Growing eCommerce businesses especially is not easy, even though the online market is huge. It depends on the product, and more so on how you market it.
Incorporate These Lessons From Shark Tank and Realize Your True Potential
There are some of the valuable lessons from Shark Tank that entrepreneurs can take home. They can be the difference between your success and failure as a business person.
Know when to say no if the deal is not suitable for the business because chances are, you’ll have other investors calling you looking to make a deal.
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