You’re an entrepreneurial spirit; you have an idea and you know it has potential, but you’re just not sure what to do next.
Well, one of the first things you’re going to have to do is get some money. That’s the hard and fast truth; it’s incredibly difficult to get a business off of the ground without at least a little bit of financial capital to work with. But for some, the idea of fundraising is appalling, and finding funds through an investor seems even more daunting.
The good news is that there are ways to build funds for your business in its first phase that don’t involve pitching to potential investors. So, if you’re an investor who wants to avoid the standard path to fundraising, explore some of these alternatives:
This is probably the most difficult (and scary) option to wrap your head around, but honestly, if you really believe in your business, you should be ready and willing to invest yourself fully into your idea. Depending on how financially established you are, you may have a few options that you can tap into. Look at your savings, and determine how much you can reasonably put towards your business. If you have a mortgage you may be able to refinance / make use of your home equity.
Remember, no one is going to want to invest in a business if its founder isn’t willing to put a bit of their own money on the line.
Partner with the Correct People
This really comes down to networking and networking well. If you have people in your network that believe in both your business idea and you, you may very well have the co-founders or investors you’re looking for right there within arm’s reach.
As an entrepreneur, you should always be working your network, and your network’s network to build connections. You’ve probably already researched the various channels you’ll need to access when growing your business (distributions, supplies, clientele, etc.), and made connections with people in all of those realms. Don’t be afraid to look for investors within those channels.
One of the most important parts of your business will be the people that you build it with. If you can get an existing supplier to invest in your business, you’ll not only have an investor….you’ll have the supplies that you need.
There are a few other ways that you can get around the investor pitch. Check back soon for more ideas!