You have questions, we have answers! As part of our From the Trenches Q&A series, OIF partners and our network of experts help answer some of the most common questions we hear from Ohio entrepreneurs. We’re committed to fueling Ohio’s startup economy, so send us your toughest questions. We’re here to help! And, watch this space for more Q&As in coming days. We’ll share bite sized content that has big impact.


A: Your initial goals should be to meet your growth targets: revenue, customers, pipeline, team, strategy, and so on. Of course, you’ll first need to assess what those targets should be and how to achieve them. For example, a pre-revenue company should be focused on building a great product, establishing key partnerships within industry and attracting initial beta (or otherwise) customers, whereas a more established company will be focused on tactics to improve the sales cycle and better qualify candidates to ensure that the pipeline is sufficient to support revenue goals. Similarly, building out the feedback loop and assigning ownership of the product road map and strategy takes time and thought and can get lost among the other needs of the business. Ensure that these types of high priority items are being addressed as you manage day to day operations.

In addition, consider developing a consistent investor communication strategy, such as monthly or quarterly newsletters to give progress progress updates. These updates can be for existing and prospective investors and serve as a great opportunity to connect with your network outside of fundraising.  It will keep people informed about the work you are doing, as well as keep your business at the top of their minds. Then when you decide to raise your next round, investors are already aware of the progress you’ve made since the last fundraise. It is also an opportunity to utilize your network for other resources, such as requests for customer introductions or for management team hires.

-Jill Raderstorf, Partner at the Ohio Innovation Fund