Watching Shark Tank, viewers might see one or two pitches that might seem a bit shady. In fact, the entire product or service seems almost too good to be true. Have you just experienced a Shark Tank con artist first hand? Probably.
Looking for an investor has never been an easy avenue. Proving who you are and how your project is the best investment, there is hope you find what you are looking for if you can convince the right person. However, there is a silent element in the process of finding an investor that you need to worry about. What is it? Looking like a con artist.
When entrepreneurs hit the boardroom on Shark Tank, they are ready to share details and offer up their dreams for The Sharks to review. However, there are a few shady people who stop by too. These folks taint the water for all the legit folks. They are there looking for a free ride.
Years ago when the Wild West was rough and raw, there were salesmen selling potions from town to town. Suggesting the bottles of liquid cured ailments, it was impossible to prove their effectiveness. Locals were throwing their money away on an unknown investment. And before they could find out the truth, the salesmen were on to the next town. This type of con artist still thrives today.
On Shark Tank the con artists might be easier to spot. The biggest tell sign is the lack of proof of demand. Not offering up hard numbers, the projections are just numbers of the future with no basis.
Another sign is the offering of research. Over and over Shark Tank viewers watch as people offer up research to prove their point. However, when questioned, The Sharks find out it’s not technically research from a qualified search, but more like a Google search done from home.
The Shark Tank con artists have to be good to find their way to TV. Keep in mind that they have fooled producers, crew and reviews to be on the show. Their project was looked real, until it came to the real investors. At that point, the TV investors were able to strip down the hype and see the investment is not what they claim it to be.
Entrepreneur Tip: Don’t make your pitch or proposal larger than life. You might be able to deceive a few folks, but investors can see right through the hype as they know the game.