Each season, I ask The Dragons for tips they would like to pass along to the pitchers. The late Laurence Lewin, a brilliant Dragon from the first two seasons, shared the following wisdom, “It is not up to me to understand the entrepreneurs business. It is up to the entrepreneur to explain it clearly to me."
Hopefully after you have successfully given your elevator pitch
, you have peaked the investor’s interest. They will then ask for details about your business. Where does the money come from? How does the technology work? Since most businesses and products are complicated, the answers to these questions will most likely be complicated as well. How can you make it extremely easy to communicate a complicated message? With a Back of the Napkin Diagram (BoND).
A BoND is a type of infographic
, and is a visual representation of your entire venture in one image. It shows all the moving parts without the underlying technology, focussing on the value added to the customers.
As a potential investor, would you rather learn the business through a 500 page document, or one picture?
You come across infographics everyday. When you open a newspaper; the weather forecast has a picture of five suns with happy faces. Can you imagine if your GPS didn’t have a picture, and only showed your current location in text? So why describe your business with just words and text, why not show them your business in a picture? Not only will it be easier for investors to understand, it will be much easier for them to remember.
In Season Four, when ScribbleLive came into The Den and were faced with the daunting task of explaining their new Internet technology, they used an infographic illustrating how their product worked. All of their infographics were very simple, straight to the point, and showed the value to the customer. You may have noticed that when they described their complex product, The Dragons didn’t ask many questions, they were listening. Their elevator pitch and infographics, helped communicate the concept of their complex product.
Presenting a complex business idea is difficult, and it requires time and effort to prepare a perfect presentation. Infographics and a BoNDs enhances a pitch by allowing the audience to see your ideas. This makes it easier to understand the complicated, and remember a large amount of content.
To learn more about how you can take advantage of infographics and BoNDs go to http://www.thebackofthenapkin.com
, which illustrates the power of these tools.
Posted on Feb 5, 2010 2:03:28 PM