How to Search for and Attract the Right Startup Advisors for your Business

By  Zainab Agha

January 17, 2022 11:00 pm EST

If you have already decided you will hire your very own startup advisory that is the first step in making sure that you avoid common pitfalls most first-time entrepreneurs are subjected to. However, you cannot just hire anyone or the first person with an impressive resume. In order, to get the most from your advisory board you need to know where the best candidates are.

Startup Events and Demo Days

Events, meetups, and conferences are an excellent way to make connections for both advisors and potential investors. These events are perfect for scouring people known for delivering results even if they are not the most popular people in the room with the highest volume of following on social media. By participating in demo days you may even attract the right advisors to approach you. 

Cold Emails

You have nothing to lose when it comes to reaching out to people you would ideally have in your app startup’s advisory board. However, if you are thinking that, other founders are too. The best way to stand out of the crowd and not have your email sent directly into the spam folder, follow some of the following tried and tested pointers:

  • Make the conversation personal and engaging.
  • Make the subject line interesting.
  • Talk about their project and what impressed you about them.

The People with a Stake

People who have a stake in your business might just be the ones to offer productive advice to you. It can be someone who bought equity in your app startup, a supplier who knows his way around the industry, or similar. If you are not sure about getting them on board officially, you do not have to. You can test the arrangement out by asking this person out for a cup of coffee and asking for advice. 

Online Forums and Communities

The good thing about online communities is that the members there want to be approached. You may also find a lot of people looking to fill in positions in an advisory board. You can also judge the influence and knowledge that these advisors will bring into your company by the way they interact with others in these communities. 

An Accelerator or Incubator

Signing up with an incubator may include that you get a panel of advisors as well. Either you will have a pool to pick from or the venture studio assigns you an advisor the first day you start collaborating with them. These are professionals that work closely with you and will be at least initially involved in the day to day progression of your startup. 

Mentoring Programs

Even though mentorship and advisory are two separate things, you can have a mentor who may fit into the role of your startup’s advisor. Also, it is worth looking into websites that offer a directory of advisors. Some of these platforms advertise their advisors as startup mentors so yo may have to do some digging. 

Zainab Agha

Zainab started her career in advertising as a copywriter; which taught her how valuable moxie was in the boardroom and translates that in her campaigns. Building brands has led her to explore digital marketing, communication concepts, and what it takes to grow an idea from scratch. In her free time (let’s assume she is a badass with balancing work and play) she travels in heels then complains, experiments with innovative creative solutions that sell, and does stand-up comedy.

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