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The meetup: How to raise investments for crypto startups under crypto winter?

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My name is Roman Shtih. I am a CEO at MetaLamp. We are a Web3 development company that specializes in blockchain and smart contract development, as well as helping startups build MVPs, giving up startups, and outsourcing front and back-end development. In November we held a meetup for startups and entrepreneurs because the majority of our clients are startups and we know the main issue is how to raise investments. Many of our clients struggled with fundraising because they didn't know where to look for specific contacts, for example. They have no idea how to communicate or pitch their products.

As a result, we invited three of the best speakers to our meetup. They've come because they have real-world experience. 

Tony Levinsky is our first speaker. He is MetaPool's Chief Operating Officer. It's a crypto investing educational project with some launchpad features. Tony will share his firsthand knowledge of finding contacts and a database of crypto investors. He can share real-time experience because MetaPool members are currently fundraising and fighting this winter. 

Mitchell Kim, a Venture Roof founder and startup advisor and mentor at Alchemist, will be the next speaker. He'll go into great detail about LinkedIn sales and fundraising.

Last but not least is Anastasia Galuzo. She worked with investment relations at Paliani Business Consulting and will tell a little bit more about Cold Outreach as well as share some effective tools and principles. Cold Outreach isn't for everyone, but they can share some tips.

Below you can read the brief report of each of the speakers. We also have a YouTube channel where you can find a recording of this meetup. And you can join our Telegram and Discord chats to find more information about our events, talk to other crypto enthusiasts and make the crypto space more interesting :)

The personal experience: searching for contacts for base of crypto investors (Tony Levinsky, COO at MetaPool)

My name is Tony and I'm COO at MetaPool and co-founder of RCDS.I have a lot of experience with cryptocurrency, as well as social media management and community management. My journey in cryptocurrency began in 2017. I began working on an ICO project and was an early participant in the so-called ICO boom. It was a crazy time, and today's situation reminds me of it.

Quoting Elon Musk “Recessions are not necessarily a bad thing”, I've been through a few of them, and what tends to happen is that if a boom lasts too long, there is a misallocation of capital. It starts raining money on fools. So, ICO boom and DeFi Summer, Crypto Winter of 2018 and 2022. It makes sense. I guess, as someone who has already lived through the entire spectrum of emotions from blind faith in the industry to utter disillusion changing sinusoidally over two years, this winter is easier to bear because I'm pretty sure all of you understand that we will see the light of green candles again and we will ride this roller coaster again. But these two periods are distinct. This winter, I became involved in a developing project that required seed funding.

At this point, MetaPool takes the stage. A team of crypto enthusiasts and good friends has been working on MetaPool for the past ten months. We have seen a changing geopolitical environment, partial team relocation, a dramatic decrease in the number of active investors, strategic product changes, and so on over the last ten months.

Right now, MetaPool is a platform similar to a launchpad, and our main concept is to create a secondary allocation market and the transparent embrace of startups and investors through simple user onboarding. 

Thus, how about our investment strategy? This is where our investment processes started and our main hypotheses initially were to work with russian-speaking VCs because we thought it would be easier to communicate, and to expand the network through offline events. One of these ideas worked, but the other didn't. So let's proceed in order. 

Where did we get our VC contacts? We have been contacting Venture Capital funds through LinkedIn, conferences, and networking. During the quarter, we communicated with nearly 60 foundations, half of which were pitched the project. Our pitch deck has evolved over time, as have our accents. It's difficult at first to specify the right things while emphasizing only the most important aspects. Consider the venture capitalists' concerns. So let me go over the pitch rules. 

Actually, there are several of them, and they are all fairly obvious, but they should not be overlooked, and this is the first pitching rule. Strike a balance between informativeness and report length. Each startup is on fire with their product and can talk about it for hours, but here you must hold your attention and have time to convey the main points.

The second rule is to state the problem solution at the start of your presentation. It will immediately create an understanding of your startup's direction and make your speech easier to relate to the niche you are working in. 

The third rule is that the roadmap, team, and economics are the most important aspects of your pitch. The milestones for your project must be attainable and understandable. 

Discuss your team's expertise and why an investor should put their money in your hands. And, in order to encrypt the projects, you must demonstrate the sustainability of your tokenomics in light of all future unlocks and cliffs. Startups on the web concentrate on your business model. 

Parallel to our interactions with Venture Capital funds, we are beginning to develop work with the community. We began the tsunami month. Because our identity is linked to the ocean team, tsunami occurred. We held Classic Airdrops contests and quests during the month.

We finished the month with our own metaverse conference. This month brought us over 1000 community members and 20 brand ambassadors who took the initiative in our community and beyond. We had already been a little disappointed in raising funds through foundations, so we decided to try ourselves in an ideal situation. We tracked down contacts from one of the launch pads and set up an MTP token release. We chose one day to host an IDEO and our CageDiving conference at Decentraland, where we announced the start of our token sale. The $50k allocation for IDEO was quickly sold out, and the metaverse event was a success.

Of course, the event did not go as planned because Decentraland was not the most convenient tool and it was difficult to manage the environment. However, the day's results made us feel euphoric. We were informed a few days later that the slider depicting the process of selling tokens on Launchpad is moving regardless of the funds raised to create foMO. As a result, there were no sales on our IDEO.

Because we chose launchpads wisely, this situation disappointed us greatly, but we did not give up. The next event we attended was a BNB chain Hackathon. Our new project RCTS was born. RCTS is a DAO-assisted multi-user crypto-quiz game based on the SBT token. Quizzes can also be used as a marketing tool by creating special promo quests in place of or in addition to AMA sessions.

We are now putting our previous experience to work on the development of two startups. So, to summarize the presentation agenda, I'd like to wish you luck in your difficult journey of developing your own startups. You will have to keep mentioning your product. Many times, you will hear rejections, criticism, or phrases such as "it's completely useless," and so on. With each iteration, you will gain a better understanding of your product and how you describe it.

You see, we are a Launchpad, we list projects on our platform, and the funds are raised by the community. So far, we've received applications for the initial listing. Our RCTS game will be the first project listed, and we will probably list a couple of projects alongside them. So, we have an application form on our website. Please click on the link and apply. Fill out the form and we will contact you so that we can add your project to our platform.

LinkedIN Sales and Fundraising (Mitchell Kim, CEO at Venture Roof)

We have 500,000 investors. Today, I'll go over six LinkedIn sales and fundraising secrets. Here are a couple of spoilers:

  • A cold message with a 20% response rate;
  • How to get more than 80 leads from online event;
  • How to create LinkedIn posts with 3 million reviews.

Let me start with networking and all lead generation channels.

Miro's mental map is shown below. Every founder understands that networking has the highest conversion rate in closing deals. Let it be 80%.

Author: Mitchell Kim

Networking has two drawbacks: lack of predictability and lack of scalability.

So, number one secret. Dopamine is essential. 

Do you know what the Croc brain from science fiction is? This is the part of our brain that  develops first, and it is in charge of processing incoming messages and detecting dangerous situations. It makes decisions in three seconds, and they usually sound like this: dangerous (run) and boring (ignore). Croc Brain takes three seconds to decide whether or not to scroll down on Instagram, for example. It also elicits strong feelings such as love, hatred, and desire.

A potential investor or client will also quickly decide whether or not they like you. You can influence this investor's decisions by talking to him.

Dopamine provides motivation and satisfaction. Dopamine is also in charge of our emotions and decisions. And this is our hack; our goal is to boost dopamine levelsin investors and clients. Most importantly, don't try to raise your dopamine levels because you might get a crown and then make bad decisions.

Secret number two: success is a sales hack. This can be frustrating if you are a founder with technical or product experience.

I mean, a startup is not a product story, no matter how useful it may be. A startup is a story about potential growth and sales, where fundraising is also sales. So sales are a success. And success is defined by big names, numbers, achievements, customer logos, and so on.

For example, in one American company where I also provide software development services, we collaborated with NASA. When you hear that we have worked with NASA, you immediately think that if these guys provide development services for NASA, they must have a great product team, and I would like to work with them. 

The third secret is to create a compelling LinkedIn profile.

I once assisted with the updating of a LinkedIn profile. Xenia Proca is from New York. The product was mentioned several times in the title of the first version. We only left the first mobile startup in New York, where she can meet with various investors over a cup of coffee and close a deal.

We also mentioned her team's one million ARR in seven months, as well as their inclusion on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Investors' dopamine levels rise when they see her headline.

Secret number four is required to complete the third step successfully.

Are you Apple or iPhone 14 Pro Max? You can make a fantastic product, but if no one knows who you are, no one will come to you.

Here are the steps to getting your own LinkedIn followers:

1. Automating customer service with Expandi, LinkedHelper, Phantom Buster, and other tools. As three founders, we also use three LinkedIn accounts and can get started with 30 connections per day. I expect 90 responses from investors within one month in the worst-case scenario.

2. Email. With up to ten mailboxes, you can send 50 emails per day with the worst response rate, say 1%, and receive 100 responses from investors each month. When we approached investors in our case, we received 18 to 19% responses. As you can see, if we approached 1450 investors, we would get about 242 plus 35 responses. It’s about 20%.

Secret number five: more dopamine.

We enjoy hearing our names called. Remember when I talked about self-esteem, ego, and dopamine? "Wow, who called me?" you think when you hear your name.

You can use a hacky cold outreach in a message, mentioning in the message to the addressee that he was recommended to contact you. You can specify the traction client's value, a portfolio of clients and their numbers, and invite an investor or potential client to coffee. 

A simple illustration. Mitchell Kim, my adviser, recommended that we contact you for the first trial. What do you think if someone suggests contacting you, say Salim? "Wow, someone suggested contacting me," you think. You should be aware of how talented I am. You recall the first dopamine point. You believe in yourself and want to read the first message. And you've already increased the conversion rate in the first message.

Even 1% can be a large number with a high conversion rate. Update everything you can, including your website, LinkedIn profile, message, presentation, and, as previously mentioned, your signature: "please find my signature below."

Sixth, webinars can help to speed up growth. Because we are a B2B company, we hosted the webinar and invited over 80 leads from major corporations to attend. We invited prominent influencers and clients to speak, and we simply distributed invitations via email and Linkedin.

I wrote about this in a LinkedIn post about a year ago, and it received over 8,000 views. This post led to a slew of new potential investors. LinkBoost and LemPod are the only tools I use.

Cold outreach and why it’s not effective in fundraising. Effective tools and principles. (Anastasia Galuzo, Investor relations manager at PBC)

I'm Anastasia and working as an investor relations manager at Paliani Business Consulting and as a part of PBC agency I've been working with numerous startups, I mean with fundraising and today we'll list some of them. The first one is CoinsPaid. Maybe you know such a company which does processing, creative processing, and we helped to close them 2.2 million during their IDO and introduced a lead investor for the round which was an American fund and they invested like the biggest amount of the sum.

I will proceed with my agenda for now. The first one is cold mailing. First of all, I will share some information about it, then I will tell you about the online and offline events, also about local investment communities and we'll share some details about the fundraising solutions like Crunchbase, Signal and the others. Well, the main question about the presentation is cold mailing. 

And well,  let's be honest, cold mailing used to be one of the best and only prospecting strategies people could use in sale, in the fundraising and in networking. And like in absolutely any spheres, but in the first 40 years, a variety of more alternative or more interesting methods have emerged and today, like, I will share some of them, give me a second please, just one sec, have some technical problems. Well, the question is how to make fundraising effective if we're cold mailing, which all we know doesn't work. 

Well, the first option might be a bit obvious but offline post networking has become a must in fundraising and networking events because they played a crucial role in professional success. They allow career-minded people to meet, connect and in our case to fundraise. In-person networking can especially help you to build a stronger emotional connection and close deals faster. By the way,  feel free to scan a QR code which leads to CoinsPaid Media website where we gathered like all this technical, crypto, all the meetups which are conducted in the world. So you can freely go scan this QR and just come across this events where you can Network and pitch your startup. And also when doing fundraising,  do not forget about the local investment communities of business angels who are constantly looking for the nice projects to invest in. Well, as an example here are some of them. These are Georgian Gita, Axel Network and PBC also at PBC we do a lot of networking events and how they are conducted you can take a look via skinning this QR code. 

That's just a nice phrase I came across when doing this presentation. There's like a small reminder for the founders who are fundraising: Chase the vision, not the money, the money will end up following you, the nice phrase said for you today. Now it's time for the fundraising CRM Solutions. Well, if you're kind of an introverted founder I have a solution for you. That's a fundraising CRM Solutions. And I've made a list of them. Well, for you to find a business angel or fund which will suit your needs and philosophy, I guess so, then you can reach them out on LinkedIn. As Mitchell has already said, you can find them on events and..but not just the other cold mailing. The first one is, in the guess, like, the most popular one is Crunchbase. As all you know that is the database for the Enterprises from the early stage startups to Fortune 1000 for sure. There you can find like this season Angel Investors, check, like, this story, like, the projects they invested in and what is more, you can just scroll the news and find some industry news there, for sure. Well, the next is Pitchbook, it's quite the same, as Crunchbase, same but different as you say. Moreover, well, I mean except for finding that this season the Angels you can sell your products and services there and generating clients, for sure. Next one is AngelList. That's quite the same as the projects at this series I mentioned before, but in this platform you can also find new talents for your startup. A lot of CVS are placed there so you can choose the best person for you.

Well, on the last but not least is Signal. That's a super nice platform for the founders, for the startup fundraising. There you can find it. like, a lot of VCs and scouts. You can filter them by the round, by the sphere like, by the age, like, wherever you want and that's like, well, the main plus of this platform is you can reach out every investor on their LinkedIn with the Mitchells' practice as we have heard before. That's pretty much it for today guys. Thank you for your attention and the last thing I want to mention is if your startup is looking for Investments or looking for PR marketing campaigns, someone to organize an event like worldwide.

Conclusion

We hope this was useful, and that these suggestions will benefit your fundraising and sales company. We want to build a crypto community that is useful to its members. We want to connect different entrepreneurs, businessmen, and startups. We want to make it easy to find members and experiences, so we can create a board in Notion where you can find each member and find a lot of information about them, and maybe we can match them together for various new features. Of course, we will continue with events and meetings, and after some time, we will compile a database of various events and meetings. If you have any suggestions for topics or speakers, please share them in our Telegram or Discord chats.

The second step is to compile a list of verified service providers. For example, you might want to get advice on tokenomics or community management on community marketing. You can find such experts and collaborate with them on our list. And it will be a network platform. This is our first step; from here, we will expand and invite different speakers on a variety of topics. I'm sure the next one will focus more on startup development. For example, suppose someone wants to start a crypto project and wants to know whether to go with centralization, decentralization, or a hybrid solution.

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