November 10, 2006

Brad Feld on demos

VC Brad Feld has a couple of posts on demo-ing here and here. (Read the interesting comments on his post as well.)
I learned - early in my first company – that the first 15 minutes of a meeting will make it or break it. I learned how to do a great demo – even if it was simply my sales pitch on a white board or flip chart. This meeting reminded me how important it is for a young company (and a MatureCo) to be able to nail their demo and do it quickly.

...I much prefer “top down” demos – these are ones that approach the demo from a user / use case perspective. Show me what the software does and why I care, not how it does it. So, rather than start at the top left menu choice and go through each feature (usually starting with “creating a new account” which I never have to see again in my entire life), walk me through a use case that is relevant to me and is populated with a complete and interesting data set. Occasionally, I’ll have a “how” type question, but then it’ll be in the context of a use case, rather than a technical feature.

I will sure pass this advice on to the companies who would selected to demo at the Venture Intelligence DEMO sessions.

Arun Natarajan is the Founder of Venture Intelligence India, which tracks venture capital activity in India and Indian-founded companies worldwide. View sample issues of Venture Intelligence India newsletters and reports.