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We are fundraising, and naturally, using our product hard. As I bang on it, and as I talk to our (beloved) users day in and day out, I've been collecting tips and a few workarounds to help you on your journey. Here they are.
1. Use the drop-down menu to move investor cards around your Investor Board.
One issue that occurs when you have a LARGE number of investors on your Board -- like 200+ -- is some browser latency. This means that dragging and dropping Investor Cards between columns becomes sluggish.
The remedy is to use the drop down menu on the Investor Card to move that card to a new column.
Using this method, cards are moved instantly.
<UPDATE: we made a major performance upgrade in late March 2017 so your Board should be more responsive; but this tip still works>
2. Add Fund Name and Referrer to small cards.
We recently changed things so that we now display both the investor's Name and the Company Field on the small cards on your Board.
Although space is limited, users have been adding both the fund name and the referrer name to the Company Field, as a way to remind themselves who the connection is. Remember, these are just fields in a database -- you can, frankly, add anything you want to that space.
3. Use the Add Activity feature to log your actions.
As I go about logging my actions with investors -- for example, "Sent her our January Investor Update" -- I recently switched from using the Notes field to using the Add Activity field instead. Similar to point #2 above, the text you enter in the Subject Line is displayed on the small card on your Board.
Typically, I click Add Activity, then pick which type of activity it was. I type what action I took in the Subject line, then on the Choose Calendar field I click "none." I ignore the time field.
This lets me see when and what action I did last.
It shows up like this:
For future actions and follow up activities, I repeat the steps above, but I select iCalendar and choose a time to push this out to my actual calendar as an actual reminder:
4. Set up multiple Investor Boards to reduce latency and better manage your funnel.
If you have a truly massive number of investor leads in your funnel, consider creating multiple Investor Boards to break them apart and manage them better. You can create multiple Boards by creating new rounds, like this:
For example, let's say you had 300 investors in total. You could set up 3 rounds. Again, the inputs are just data points in a database -- it doesn't actually matter what you call your "round"-- so you could set up one round called "High Priority Leads" and two others for Medium and Low Priority, and break out into 100 each.
Or, you could set up a Board containing only Seed Funds and another that is only Angels.
One additional note -- if you truly have 300 or 400 investors on your target list, you are probably going too broad and not "qualifying" them enough -- you're not spending enough time researching the targets, and removing those that aren't a fit.
That's not a good fundraising approach-- you will waste a ton of time chasing irrelevant leads. I suggest working about 50-100 at a time.
5. Export your Investor Updates to PDF.
We built Investor Updater with a specific intent to host the updates purely online, vs. something you turn into a PDF and attach, for a variety of reasons: you can control who sees it, you can edit it and update it even after sending it, etc.-- none of which you can do with an email update or a PDF update. Once a regular email update is sent, it's out of your hands. You've lost control.
However, we realize that sometimes you need a PDF or even a printed copy. Here's a workaround to turn your beautiful Investor Updates into a PDF:
a) open the report (not the Preview, but actually copy and past the published URL into a new browswer window). I suggest using Chrome.
b) click File --> Print --> Save As PDF
c) if you are only wanting to turn it into a PDF (not print it also), select Layout = Portrait, and Paper Size = Tabloid, and check the box for Background Images. If you instead want to print it, you'll need to select a different Paper Size.
This will generate a really beautiful PDF that you can attach for your "old school" investors, as needed.
That's it for now. I intend to update this post regularly with new tips.
Do you have a tip, hack, best practice or workaround? Please share.