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After securing investments from both Gary Neville and Sara Davies on Dragons’ Den, Lottie Whyte knows how to successfully sell-in an idea.

The MyoMaster co-founder – handed the title of ‘most masterful pitch’ by the BBC after her appearance on the BBC show in March – is no stranger to being bold in business.

Whyte made use of her years of communications expertise to sell MyoMaster to the Dragons. The startup was created to give everyday gym-goers access to professional-grade recovery equipment which is usually reserved for fitness influencers and sport stars.

When Dragon Steve Bartlett told her “I’ve seen all of this before… these massage guns, they send me this stuff all the time and it’s just piling up in my house”, Whyte responded: “With all due respect, you’re not our core customer… they aren’t getting sent free therapy [gadgets].”

An amused Neville chipped in with “good point!” before Whyte added: “Our core customers love running, they go to parkrun, they sign up for 10k runs… we meet thousands and thousands of them.”

With 700% year-on-year revenue growth in between the filming and airing of the viral episode, Whyte tells us how to craft a pitch that can take your business from the kitchen table to the investor boardroom. 

Know your USP

Knowing your unique selling point and being able to vocalise it powerfully – selling a dream or solution rather than product or service – will set you apart with investors, she says. 

“Don’t just tell investors what you do; tell them why it matters,” she advises. “Use your USP as a spotlight, highlighting what makes your business unique and how it solves customer problems, or gets them closer to where they want to be, in a way that competitors can’t.

“Frame your USP as a win for both customers – solving a pain point – and investors, creating a scalable market opportunity. This combination will cut through noise to grab their attention.” 

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Be your own hype person

In simple terms, believing in your business and yourself is the only way you are going to make other people believe in it, she continues – although this can be a challenge when starting out.

“You have to go out there and get it for yourself. It’s not always easy, but prepare yourself for battle and you’ll win the war,” she explains. 

“One of the best things I’ve done since setting up MyoMaster is having my own ‘hype folder’ on my phone – positive messages from customers, congratulations messages from friends, and general ‘wins’ along the journey. 

“It reminds me, even in the hardest of times, of every instance of us absolutely smashing it and it pushes me that little bit further.”

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Practice makes perfect

Practice really does make perfect. Before entering ‘The Den’, Lottie and husband-cum-co-founder Joe Gray practised their pitch nearly 250 times. 

“By the time you’re in front of investors or possible customers, you want your pitch to be so natural that muscle memory takes over when the adrenaline hits,” she says. “The more you practise, the more you’ll internalise your message and delivery. 

“This builds confidence, helps you identify areas for improvement, and lets you anticipate potential investor questions. By the time you face the real deal, you’ll be polished and ready to captivate the room.”

Whyte says practice and preparation allowed her to seamlessly weave through questions as part of the Dragons’ three-hour interrogation. She even convinced Davies to make an offer despite originally planning to reject the business.

Be Marmite 

Whyte stands by the notion that it’s better to be loved or hated than to just be liked. 

Knowing who you want to love your product can give you focus on your target audience, but mainly your target investors. You want people who support the vision you have for your business, so aiming to be either loved or hated sets you up to find investors who fully believe in your business. 

“If you appeal to everybody, you appeal to no one. It’s okay to exclusively target specific audiences or a specific type of investor, and talk in a way that involves them and alienates everybody else,” is her view.

“You’ve got to be brave enough to identify your niches and go after them when you start your business. Capture your audience, engage them, make them want to be part of your community. 

“And if that means that you become like marmite, and nobody else gets involved, that’s okay, because the people that do will love your brand.”

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