When Digitail joined Fast Track Malmo in 2019, they started directly getting attention from angel investors. No wonder why - Digitail is solving the gap between the ever-growing expectations of millennial pet parents and the experience offered by veterinarians with their current tools. During that year, Digitail raised capital from angels in the Nordics.
“Getting all those questions from investors was basically like doing a quick MBA on what you need to know. They forced you from day one to work on your pitch, and your way to present” - Sebastian Gabor, Digitail.
In June 2019, they realized - that they need to focus on sales and work hard for at least one year to reach the magical limit of 10k MRR to raise a seed round. Hard work always pays off!
After a year of grinding, it happened, they had reached this important milestone. Then, it was time to start thinking about raising a seed round.
Attention span is getting shorter and shorter overall. According to a study Microsoft conducted in 2000, the average person's attention span is 12 seconds. This is true for investors as well! Investors are less patient than they used to be. Also - you will probably have to contact more investors than you used to do last year or the year before.
Now, meeting investors is challenging, but it can also help you to become a pitching pro! And for that, you have to become really good at listening. There are plenty of investors who will tell you exactly what they would want to see from a potential investment. So you need to pay attention to what investors say.
“Talking to investors gave us this structure of how to present and what information we look at” - Sebastian Gabor, Digitail.
And here comes the challenge - how do you articulate the nuances of your business to a VC investor in the most efficient way?
The solution was quite simple but, oh so clever! The Digital team started putting all the information investors were asking for in their Data room in Notion. From MRR to market strategy, business model and growth plan.
Sebastian and Ruxandra found that gathering information on Notion was a better way to convey the depth of his business than the typical slide deck setup. Using the Data room approach completely changed the way you start a conversation with a VC.
Setting up your own Data room in Notion will definitely take more time than a traditional deck of 30 slides would have, but the results are going to pay off! Once created, your Data Room will be working for you - delivering all the important details about your business already at the beginning of the conversations with investors. Normally, you would get into that kind of deep data talk on meeting 3 or 4.
So when is the perfect time to share your Data Room, directly after a meeting with an associate or rather after the first partner meeting?
Sebastian: “Share it after the first meeting to create urgency. It’s signaling that you are in late-stage conversations with other VCs and showing that you are structured as a team.”
Digitail is now used by 2,000 veterinarians in 16 countries. They used their Data Room to raise $2.5 million in a seed round in January led by byFounders and Gradient Ventures (Google’s AI fund), joined by Partech and a series of angels including Dr. Ivan Zakharenkov (SmartFlow).
“Digitail’s Data Room is the best I’ve ever seen! I’m so impressed!" - Sara Rywe, investor at byFounders
Now Sebastian is sharing his game-changing Data Room Template with you so you can achieve the same results!
Here is the step-by-step guide on how to use it:
How to build a Data Room in Notion to Wow the Investors
A step-by-step guide by Sebastian Gabor
Start with a Blurb about your startup that contains your suitcase (top 3 ideas that you want someone to remember). You will end up using this in intro emails.
This is your 10-15 slides pitch deck. It sounds easy but usually, this is the hardest part. Disclaimer, it will probably take more time to create a good one, so prepare to work hard and be patient. Once you have the first version, pitch to other entrepreneurs and investors, get feedback and polish until you can be concise and clear.
It is a video recording of you pitching your startup. Make it short and sweet. Around 5 minutes is the perfect length.
This contains the most important information that you normally get asked in a meeting. Have it structured and easy to read.
- Objectives. What is going to happen if you raise the seed round? What are you planning to achieve? Breakdown what you’ll need to achieve to raise your next round, the Series A. OKRs (Objective Key Results) are a handy tool for this. Objectives are the goals you have for your business, and why you have those goals. Key Results are the concrete, time-bound objectives that you need to reach to stay on track to achieving your objectives.
- Metrics. Here you show your MRR Growth, number of clients, number of clicks, distribution of MRR by country (if you are selling in different countries), and other metrics you are proud of. Show your numbers in the form of charts and make sure they point upwards ;)
- Financials. Any investor will look at your idea from the perspective of how you translate it into financials. So here you use a spreadsheet to help investors understand any return on investment (ROI) and let them know that your business has plenty of room to grow quickly. Also, assume margins that are realistic in your target market.
- Market. Include information that is relevant for your startup. You know your market better than anyone. Use this to share your view and objective data (include references).
- Business model. Describe your plan of generating revenue. Show how your company creates value (product), how it provides value to the customer, and how the company generates profit.
- Team. Show your team and why everyone is crucial to the growth of the company. Investors are looking for teams with balanced abilities where people are dedicated to shared success.
- Hiring plan. Each role should have a set target/goals that you want to achieve when they join. If you already have candidates for the role, include the name of the person. It's a strong signal to show that there are already great people that want to join the team.
- Captable. Once you start negotiating the Term Sheet and go into the legal process, you will need this information to be very accurate. You can also use an online tool for the Captable or a Google sheet! Our table included: name, number of shares, the sum invested, agreed valuation, date and the agreement.
- Company information. We created detailed Notion pages for each entity. The information is needed during the legal process of the round but also afterward for hiring and dealing with other stakeholders. Include registered company name, VAT number, org number and address.
The video approach was useful to help investors understand what you are building and selling. If you are not doing sales, ask the person that does sales to make the video.
- Share client testimonials. Take this opportunity to explain how much your clients need and love what you are doing. It's hard for investors to see what you know. The easier you make it for them to understand, the better! Take screenshots from emails, texts and public reviews.
We hope that this template helps your startup focus on the long-term goal, which is to minimize the amount of time and money spent raising money. And we are sure - you know what to do with that spare time! To build amazing things that make the world a better place!