Advice that says you need a warm introduction to an investor is probably something you have read about. A good introduction from a founder they've already invested in is the best way to get noticed by an investor. It isn't the only way to raise money if you don't attend barbecues at the Sonoma mansions of venture capitalists.

Warm introductions

A warm introduction is made by someone who is relevant. The school teacher may not have a lot of startup or investing experience, but the VC knows their kids pretty well.

A founder of a startup that the VC invested in makes a less warm introduction. An introduction from a founder who has already made the investor a lot of money is better than that. Pick their brains and schedule a coffee if you know them personally. There is no need for an introduction for that. If they believe in your vision, they will give you an introduction.

Unless you have been in the startup scene for a long time, your list of founder friends is pretty short. You might have to do more work.

It's all about the network, and it works as a filter. If the introduction adds some context about the strength of the connection, the founder will forward at least one or two deals per month to investors. I have invested my own money in this company at the angel stage, which is better than meeting them at a party once.

How to pitch me: 6 investors discuss what they’re looking for in April 2022

The problem is that networks can be hard to understand. A childhood friend of a well-known venture capitalist may be an old friend of you. Is it possible that your former boss started a company, raised money from someone relevant to your company and would love to do an introductory speech?

Mine your LinkedIn connections

This type of research can be done with the help of a professional networking website. It's time to research on LinkedIn and make a long list of investors you'd like to talk to.