Has anyone seen a startup create a landing page to attract potential investors? Whether you have or not, is this a best practice, and should it be less detailed than a traditional pitch deck and an email pitch deck?
This is something I've toyed with. The best way would be to use your digital and social media presence to engage with customers. Once that's in place & you need investors to ramp up your business and pay your employees etc etc then you must use the same digital presence to engage with and attract investors, who in turn would get led back to your site. Investors love to see sales & a healthy cash flow. You could put up a counter of data they would enjoy witnessing on the site. Note this data should be such that's attractive to investors as well as customers and potential customers. No need for a pitch deck etc. Your about page on your site would have your firm's story & a bit on the founder and team. Ensure you have testimonials, press appearances, awards or even cases if it's a B2B business. Investors could always contact & reach out to you, via a contact us page.
As @Kelly notes, there are very specific rules about how companies are allowed to solicit investments and from whom. Even if you are compliant with regulation, keep it in your mind that a blind solicitation (not knowing who is looking) is a recipe for a bad match. Not only can you not tailor your message to the audience well, what you're allowed to or should say may be very different depending on the qualifications of the audience.
Perhaps you are thinking about how some companies promote their Kickstarter or other crowdfunding campaigns on a landing page or web site. But remember, those move customers along immediately to the actual crowdfunding platform that does follow the regulations. It is not a solicitation in and of itself.
A fundraising landing page to me sounds very similar to standing in the middle of the street with a cardboard sign that reads "Give me money." While you have more space to make your case on a web page than a panhandler, it does seem to be in the same genre.
Remember that investors invest in plans, not products. They want to know how they're getting their money back, what you've done to reduce risk, and why you are credible. If you think something even less than a pitch deck can do that, I'm afraid you're mistaken.
I feel like what would be most valuable to you as a next step is to work on a plan that considers what your company does if it never gets a dime from any outside source. How would you change your strategy? How would your product or service be different? What small steps could you take to generate revenue today that will put you on a path to fund your own enterprise and be self-sustaining? Considering that most businesses will never see an investment outside of friends or family, it is a very important step in evaluating whether to proceed with your idea or not. Can it survive without external sources of funds? If it can't today, is there some way to modify your business so it can?
Investors like to come in when money is the last reason that the company can't grow. They don't like to put in money to watch you grow a business from seed. They want money to be a solution to an inventory problem, an equipment problem, a space problem, not a construction problem. Yes, there are (fewer) investors that get involved in seeding new businesses, but it's a vastly smaller number than those who help businesses expand.
What is going to attract investors is your early independent success, not a sales pitch. Take all that energy you have to talk about your idea and put it into building your early business.
Sounds like you want to create something that grabs the attention of investors, a landing page is an excellent resource for that, assuming it's built well and has a clear call to action (email sign up, requesting a meeting, etc).
As far as detail goes, landing pages operate on the idea that you quickly walk someone through what you're doing and why it matters. I would ask the question, what are you building and who is it for? Does this person need a technical readout of whatever you're pitching, or do they need to be sold on an idea?
Hope this helps.
I'm far from the foremost expert in this, but you would probably run into problems with the SEC. Talk to an attorney.
Thank you Zach and Sheeba for the insight!
How are you planning to get investors to look at that website?
Many startup websites have some page/segment for investors. But I am yet to see an investor reach out, before you reach out to them first.
You don't "attract" investors. You build value in your startup. Generate paying customers. Generate profit. Or, get the app/product to go "viral"
That's when investors notice you.
If you are an investor with $1B to invest. Would you just see a website and give money? Or would you see how your money would be multiplied after investing?