Shark Tank is a brilliant show and a favorite here at Casepops. The program provides the opportunity for inventors and entrepreneurs to find investors for their product. They pitch their idea, ask for funding, and in exchange offer a percentage of their company. If the panel of investors, or "Sharks," like your idea and business strategy, they will invest using their own money. This, in turn, can start a bidding war between the Sharks as a "feeding frenzy" begins. What could be better for a new product?
To say we've learned a lot from this show would be an understatement! To us, Shark Tank demonstrates that the people behind a product are almost, if not more important than the product they create. After all, plunging in to a shark tank requires confidence! In this game, self confidence can carry a product much further than you might initially expect. If you prove that your product has a heart behind it, it's much more likely it will be sought out by eager investors.
So, before the feeding frenzy gets started, let's meet the Sharks.
Mark Cuban- a self-made billionaire entrepreneur and owner of the 2011 NBA champions, the Dallas Mavericks. If you want inspiration, read Mark's first published book: How to Win at the Sport of Business.
Now, with these impressive entrepreneurs, it's easy to see how you might feel overwhelmed. But with these tips, we can teach you how to swim with the sharks, not become chum.
This is key. You need to show why your product is better than any other in that market. Is it high quality? Does it do something new? Show the value of what you're introducing!
These people aren’t your friends. You can’t be coy; this is business. How much have you sold? This is usually the first question they ask after the product has been explained. Do you have orders back-logged? How much does your product cost to make? How much have you grossed? You need to answer these questions not only to demonstrate your products value and your value as potential partner.
You need to have propriety on your product. Nothing makes a shark and other potential investors more comfortable than having the piece of mind that comes with a product being legally protected. This doesn’t just add value, but solidifies it.
This ties all the other points together. During your pitch you need to offer a percentage of your company for the investment you’re seeking. You need to be honest about the potential earnings your product can actually bring in; being sentimental about your product doesn’t have value in the real world.
The sharks are brilliant and they not only bring money to the table but knowledge and resources. The Sharks have connections and know how to build and grow a business. They have a value, so consider that if they want to renegotiate your initial offer.
Who would think you could actually learn something from Reality TV? You can if you are watching Shark Tank! We, ourselves, are a startup and feel confident that our fascination with Shark Tank has taught us something along the way! On the great blog, Shark Tank Success Stories, we are reminded of the companies that owe their current success to the foresight of the show's expert judges. Companies like Mr. Tod's Pie Factory and AVA the Elephant prove that taking advice and money from the Sharks can result in truly successful products. But, it's not all about the Sharks. Entrepreneurs that succeed on Shark Tank succeed not only because of monetary investment, but because they came to the table with a strong business or product concept, they demonstrated their passion for the product, and they were able to learn from the Sharks' previous experience.
Hopefully these tips have inspired you to take a chance and swim with the sharks. In our case, we've only become more passionate about our unique business prospect, and would be proud to present it to the Sharks given the chance!