Keeping investors & advisors up to date with monthly email updates
Any company that is serious about growing its business should be tracking some metrics and reporting to people outside the company. The very act of writing those updates are a good time for you to reflect and hold yourself — as one of the founders of the company — accountable.
My belief is that you should get in the habit of sending an update like this as soon as you’re actually up and running as a business. It’s a must and will be required as soon as you have investors, so why not practice your update hygiene early.
Who should I send this update to?
If you haven’t taken any outside funding yet, advisors, prospective investors, and other close allies should be on your email update list. You might not include highly detailed KPIs, but rather focus on the written updates and the asks.
When I meet with someone whose business I am truly interested in, I ask them to “keep me up to date on progress”. That’s code for “add me to your advisor update email”.
What should I use to send this email?
The simplest is to BCC a small group of people. Then it’s up to you to track whether you’re getting feedback and/or your linked information is being read.
Your CRM (such as Streak, which plugs straight into Gmail) usually has a simple way to track opens and mail merge a group of people marked as investor / advisor.
Mailchimp is a bit heavyweight for this sort of thing, but their other product TinyLetter is nice and simple, and you can receive replies directly or manage them inside of the TL interface.
The basic template of what you should send is simple. You want a repeatable format that people get
- Metrics: the basic numbers that you use to track your business.
- Good / Bad / Ugly: what are some things that happened this month? Be brief, include links if relevant.
- Asks: this could be anything from sharing a recent blog post on Twitter, helping to fill an open position you’re hiring for, or an ask for an intro at a set of companies. Be direct on what you’re looking for.
The articles below go into much more detail into what you should be including.
You just closed your $1m seed round four weeks ago, and investors are starting to contact you to see how things are…codingvc.com
I always look forward to letters from my TechStars portfolio companies. They are short, informative, and to this eye…tydanco.com
This last one has a one click button to open their template directly into a template in your Gmail.