The 10 Things Shark Tank Investors Demand

by Rebekah Brown on March 24, 2014

Entrepreneurs don’t always know whether a business, product or service will sell because many don’t have business backgrounds.

Passion for a start-up can be short lived for those who are misdirected by blurry, fiscally unfit dreams. But big ideas can work out and take off IF the entrepreneur can write a business plan, research the market, find a magical financial formula, gets start-up money and sales.

There are places for entrepreneurs to run deals past investors: incubator groups, small business development liasons, government organizations.

But there’s a new platform, Shark Tank, the ABC phenomenon that gives viewers a first-hand look at how hard it can be to succeed in business.

Billionaire entrepreneurs Lori Greiner, Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O’Leary, Mark Cuban, Robert Herjavec, and Daymond John devour business dreams with zeal.

Shark Tank billionaires pick business ideas apart, dissecting entrepreneurs who either spit out stunning margins, patent ownership, sales success or are finished with the statement: “I’m out.”

Sharks only invest in deals that are served up on a platter ready to take off. Here are 10 things Shark Tank investors want:

1. Sales: Sharks want to hear that after one year that sales are at least $150,000 to get their attention

2. Great margins: 50% is a good start

3. Search engine optimized websites: Sharks want advertising-savvy, deep-thinking marketers

4. Patents: Sharks want patent ownership or in-process patents

5. No debt: Sharks want boot-strappers who made it without taking out loans or having multiple investors

6. Big ears: Sharks want people to listen, be accountable and be honest

7. Deal makers: Sharks offer and entrepreneurs better make financially-based counters

8. Unique: One of a kind selling point that only this product/service/brand can provide

9. Fight: Find a way to charm Sharks while sticking up for strong businesses

10. Impeccable presentation: Talk like a business plan sharing sales, margins, unique selling points and patents

Start Without Debt and Plenty of Drive

The Internet is filled with how-to videos and articles on how to start a business. There’s no reason entrepreneurs should fail unless business is too challenging and it’s not in the blood.

There are skilled marketers, teams of advertising firms who can make  and they don’t ask for help when they reach a wall and can’t figure it out.

Great athletes have coaches as soon as they reach the pros to bring them up to the level of performance needed every competition.

Watch Shark Tank. Every season. Sharks teach as they go, which is very unshark-like behavior. It’s all done for TV and in the end there’s a clear formula for a successful business worth investing in that is divulged to those who watch carefully.

Shark Tank is raw and ruthless. Cut throat business people cut to the chase and to the quick with similar questions. Big ideas are easy. Real deals are hard to come by and harder to continue without guidance when insight and know-how run thin.

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