A lot has been spoken around startup communities about how to influence in getting investors as it is one of the hardest stages in the lifespan of a startup. However, maintaining a good solid relationship with investors once you have them on board is very crucial and as difficult as getting them to fund your startup.
If you are in a startup business, it is very likely that you will need some funding for your business to launch your MVP and get it going. Sometimes building the MVP is already expensive enough that at this early stage you will be looking for investors to back you up. Pitch them your brand and product in the best possible way to get traction in your startup and to do so you could aim at registering your startups and trademark the name and logo of the product or the startup so that no other person can use the same name and snatch your investors and direct them to their direction.
Schedule board meetings with investors every 2-3 months to inform them about your progress and, specifically, where you are standing regarding the growth plan. Silence or absence of communication can build a lack of trust in your business.
On those meetings tell them about most important milestones that you have achieved in the past quarter and what strategies are you planning to implement to attain goals of the next quarter. When talking about your plans, describe the actions(roadmap) you will undertake now with the focus on significant benefits they will bring to the business future (1–2 years ahead).
Showing investors that you are doing now the best you can to make the project will give them confidence in your business’ success. In the end, they are not as interested in your business’ short-term advancements, as in your long-term profitability.
Do not hide it. It only gives you an edge to keep investors informed about the obstacles you face. First of all, honesty has always been fundamental to any relationship, including business ones. Secondly, it indicates transparency which is a long-term driver of a valuable relationship.
Transparency is a sign of trust. The more you disclose your business to your investors, the more confidence you gain from them. By informing them about your problems and your plans to overcome them you also show them that you are in control of the situation. Plus if they know of an issue in time, they can often help to tackle the problem you are facing or connect you with the right people.
Communicate all your wins and challenges and do it frequently. Despite the fact that investors are not interested in catching wind of your day by day operations, they will be glad to know about your successes and take pride on them as well. Emails are a decent form of such updates: they enable you to hit them up and reference them during executive meetings.
Try not to fear to do it. There is nothing wrong with transparently recognizing that something did not go as planned. What is wrong though is keeping the strategy, although the venture has not met development expectations throughout the previous 2-3 months or more, in a conviction that you will make up for lost time in the following quarter.
Try not to be reluctant to get on a more personal level and desert the formalities when the situation feels right. As indicated by the founder of eBay, Pierre Omidyar, " an honest, open condition can draw out the best in individuals", and it is true.
This move regularly helps to break the ice and make a base for a more productive business relationship. Associating on a more casual level does not imply that you should disregard their significance for your business. Showing respect and thankfulness for ideas they share with you will present you in a positive light.
And, of course, the hardest but the most critical approach to keep your investors satisfied is by meeting the forecasted development design. Not a single investor wants to see a falling business. Neither do you, if it's your own.
In general, the brilliant rule is to communicate. Keep in mind that it is a relationship and there is no strong and robust relationship without communication from both sides. Do it frequently and make sure to face both positive and negative sides of the coin. The steps as mentioned earlier will enable you to build trust among your investors and present you as a dependable accomplice and help you develop your MVP to the fullest.