1. Set the stage
Invest in an external mic, good lighting, and whatever else you need to appear and sound your best. It may seem obvious, but Hayley Barna, partner at First Round Capital, says she has met remotely with some founders who “look like they’re in a witness protection program.”
2. Show your work
Video calls can do more than facilitate conversation. Why not screen share a customer email or an internal Google Doc as a way to bring your story to life? “It makes it a more dynamic meeting, but it also creates this great level of transparency,” says Barna.
3. Avoid COVID-itis
Acknowledge the pandemic, but don’t get carried away. In Barna’s VC world, she says, “Some founders are making the mistake of overhauling their pitch or making a knee-jerk change in their business model. Investors are looking for long-term successes.”
4. Be realistic
In a challenging economy, you need a buffer against downside risk (i.e., money in the bank). It may sound counterintuitive, but don’t be afraid to ask for what you need—or more. Ask for too little, and you’re “just kicking the can down the road,” Barna says.