Many entrepreneurs have a great business idea, but need some advice and a little encouragement on how and where to get venture capital. And given that the venture capital community is tight knit, you often need to include venture capitalists in your network to secure funding.
Where else can a newbie entrepreneur get great advice than at a VC conference? VC conferences are held around the country, and they are particularly popular in California. At each conference, hundreds of entrepreneurs show up with their best suits on and copies of their business plans in hand seeking advice on improving their chances at Venture capital.
What kind of valuable information could you obtain at a VC conference?
Seminars and Workshops
At each conference, there will be a wide range of seminars that are usually hosted by VC investors who give advice on certain topics. Here is just a sample of what you can attend:
- Keynote Addresses – At every VC conference, there is usually one or more keynote speakers from major venture capital companies. Their speeches can be invigorating and encouraging, offering great advice to attendees. Hearing the best advice straight from the horse’s mouth is one of the best ways to pinpoint your strategy for approaching a VC firm.
- Early Stage Capital – You might find that a workshop on early stage or startup financing can be very helpful. If you’re an entrepreneur with a startup business and are unsure of your next steps you need to take before approaching a VC firm, attend one of these workshops and get some valuable advice.
- Pitch Coaching – VCs receive a lot of pitches from an infinite amount of entrepreneurs. They know what works best and what they want to see. Find out how you can formulate your pitch strategy in a workshop that offers coaching on your pitch presentation.
- Panels – Oftentimes VC conferences will have a professional VC panel Q & A where you can ask and hear other entrepreneurs ask important questions about Venture capital. These panels not only are a great way to get answers, but a perfect place to network with other entrepreneurs and VC investors.
Network with VC Investors
Your time at a VC conference could lead to face time with important VC contacts. There is usually time built in to a VC conference for hobnobbing and schmoozing. Get in and introduce yourself to VC attendees. This is a perfect time to practice your “elevator pitch,” where you introduce yourself and a 60-second or less pitch about your business. Get advice, get contacts, and get remembered. But don’t get remembered as that pushy guy who hogged all the time with VC representatives. Be professional and considerate.
The best thing about VC conferences is that they are extremely affordable for the information and contacts you could gather. For around $75 to a few hundred dollars, you can get access to valuable information that could lead to millions invested in your company. Plus, the cost of attending is tax deductible!