This article was published on 20 November 2020
How do you make yourself enticing ‘angel food’? Suse Reynolds, founder of Angel HQ and Executive Chair of the Angel Association, New Zealand’s champion for early stage investment, gave a group of #SouthernSaaS20 attendees a detailed overview on how to attract angel investors.
“Be as quintessentially ‘you’ as possible,” Suse said. “Angel investors are backing you to succeed. Not everyone is going to ‘get’ you, so be as exciting and yourself as possible to attract those who are keen on you!”
There are about 850 ‘angels’ in New Zealand, and about a dozen networks. Typically investing between 5k and 30k, many angel investors will turn into business leads; due diligence, championing your product, or a future board member. “Only twenty or thirty percent of angel investors are full-time, the rest of the cohort are various shades of passive,” said Suse. “We really love telling people about the exciting startups we’re taking part in.”
How does an angel look at your idea? It’s a combination of the questions “why this, why you, and why now?” Generating excitement, practicing your pitch on anyone who will listen, and really diving deep into your market to understand it are crucial steps in engaging angel investors.
Suse had a fantastic way to describe types of start-ups; “is it a painkiller, or is it a vitamin? While painkillers are usually great angel food, a really groovy vitamin will hum too.” She said that angel investors want numbers. “Speak to 100 customers. Ask them how much they would pay for your product, and give a sense of your advertising, promotion, and rhetoric.”
“It’s not all about how big your numbers are,” said Suse. “Startups that are really caning it are really considering depth and sincerity of connection.”
Suse also touched on the next step of scaling your product. “The competition in your market might just be the ‘old way of doing things’,” and being able to articulate clearly and deeply how much you understand the landscape is crucial. Further, “it’s about bringing joy to your customers – the money will follow.”
Suse’s key advice for those looking for angel investment? “You need hunger to execute your idea. Don’t lie, and don’t piss people off. Listen and be honest – Kiwis don’t like dishonesty.” Thanks Suse for your incredible insights!
Thanks to all who took part in the first two weeks of #SouthernSaaS20. We’re approaching the final week of Southern SaaS 2020, made for software-as-a-service (SaaS) professionals in New Zealand’s growing digital product looking to upskill, connect, and be inspired. Week 3 is focused on 1:1 appointments with SaaS experts, so make sure you book in!
Join our Kiwi SaaS community for valuable connections, capability opportunities, and advice from industry experts.
Southern SaaS 2020 is a virtual conference arranged by New Zealand’s innovation agency, Callaghan Innovation, for software-as-a-service (SaaS) professionals looking to network, upskill, and inspire in New Zealand’s growing digital product sector.