How to introduce your startup in an email

We encourage Techstars companies to perfect the way they introduce themselves.

An introduction is a first touch point. Make it simple, clear, and awesome.
To start with, master the etiquette of forwardable email. Get it right.

Make the subject line clear and searchable. Don’t call it Intro. Call it:
Intro TO/FROM, where TO is the person you are trying to connect with and FROM is your name and company name.

Let’s look at what goes inside the actual email.

Whether you are asking for an investor introduction or a business introduction, write 2 clear paragraphs including:

Introduction: Your name and name of your company, including URL
Business: 2-3 sentences about your business & why it’s interesting
Traction: 1-2 sentence about your traction / customers you have / progress you made
The last part is why you want to connect, and the ask. If this is an email to investor:
Why: Looking for feedback, or connecting because you have background.
Ask: Could we do a quick 15 min call? or, Could I get more feedback via email?
If you are looking for a business introduction:
Why: Looking for feedback or think you may be interested in our product
Ask: Could we do a quick 15 min call? or, Could I get more feedback via email?

The result is just 2 paragraphs that are easy to understand and are actionable. For example, here is a business development email:

My name is Romain, and I am the CEO of Gorgias (Techstars ’15). We are building automation software for help desk. With Gorgias agents can save 50% of the time answering requests, cut down on manual tasks, and help businesses save money.

Our customers include ClassPass, Plated, Stripe, and others. We’d love to show you our solution, get feedback and see if it might be a fit for your organization. Please let me know if you’d like to schedule a brief demo call next week.

Or here is an example of an angel investor introduction:

My name is Sara and I am the CEO of Jewelbots (Techstars ’15). We’ve created programmable friendship bracelets that teach girls how to code. The bracelets form a mesh network and allow girls near by to send each other messages. As the girls interact with the bracelets they unlock different patterns, can buy fun charms and branded bands.

We have 190K in pre-sales from Kickstarter and our own web site and are expecting to launch in Q1 of 2016. Our investors include Homebrew, #angels, and Matt Cutts, and we have a few hundred K left in our current round. Because you invested in Hullabalu (Techstars ’14), we thought that you may be interested in talking to us about our business. Please let us know if you’d like to connect next week.

Now, if you have to send a lot of these intros, Gorgias actually has a very neat extension for Gmail that I use all the time. It allows you to create a template that you can insert into your email with a single keystroke – it saves you a ton of time & ensures that you always introduce your startup consistently.

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