Ambiguity

You want to raise money for your business, you probably have one chance to get it right, so why don’t you get a few people to critique the language of your pitch before letting it go live?

It still amazes me how many pitches contain ambiguous or misleading language. When I see such language I immediately take the view “what is this company trying to hide?”, if I can be bothered or I feel like being a little antagonistic I’ll post a question but most of the time I just discount the pitch and move onto the next. The very least I expect from a company who receives my money (albeit a small amount) is honesty and accuracy.

Here are a couple I found after a quick peruse this evening:

“Founded in December 2013, we have traded successfully for over 3 years. We turned over £417K and were profitable in our first financial year alone”

So did you turn over £417k in your first year or your first 3 years? Does the word ‘alone’ at the end of the second sentence mean you only made a profit in your first year?

“Trading since March of 2016, over 350,000 unique visitors have been on the site and return purchasers average at 40%, growing by an average of 23% each month.”

I’m not even sure what this one is trying to convey, the fact that return purchasers average at 40% seems unrelated to the fact that they’ve have 350,000 unique visitors. Are return purchasers growing by 23% each month?

Pointing out these issues might seem pedantic and you could argue that the intention of both quotes can be inferred and I’d agree. However, these things are so easy to get right, it’s very easy to restructure both of the above to be absolute in their meaning and save yourself from the questions that will likely ensue on the discussion board.

 

 

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