Participating in an acceleration program? We know it can be overwhelming. There are many options available in the market and the application process can be quite demanding. Nevertheless, here are some reasons why you should participate in one.
1- Check if you have a strong product or if you are in a big enough market
By participating in an acceleration program, you will be able to have your solution and business model reviewed by experienced founders/C-level executives, which, to a certain extent, can be beneficial for you to evaluate what you can do better. In addition, it can help your startup's credibility among investors, media and potential customers, as your startup has gone through a rigorous selection process and was chosen as a very promising startup by an acceleration program.
2 - Learn how Venture Capitals choose companies to invest in
It can be beneficial for you and your startup to know how Venture Capitals choose the startups and how you should pitch to them. In these acceleration programs, you have the opportunity to train your pitch and have the feedback from experienced investors. With this practice, chances of moving on to the next round of funding are very high.
3 - Receive comprehensive support from mentors, corporates and experts
We know that running a startup can be a big challenge and sometimes a very lonely journey. To keep you from walking this path alone, Accelerators can connect you with mentors and experts who can support you and your startup. Mentors will share with you their own experiences, the best directions to follow and some extra knowledge on how to proceed in certain situations.
4 - Boost your learning & growth via the Acceleration program activities
Acceleration programs teach you many of the important skills you need to run your business. Some of these include marketing and communications, finance and technical skills, among others. The acceleration program can be seen as an educational experience where you are able to learn at a very high pace in a short - but intense - period of time.
5 - Access to angel investors, family offices and VCs
Through these programs, you gain access to a very wide range of Angel Investors, Family offices and Venture Capital firms. It is very likely that you will need this network by the end of this journey, when you need to raise funds to further grow your business.
6 - Get potential customers
Usually, startup acceleration programs include target audience members at demo days, who can hear about your startup and what you are offering. In addition, the external exposure that every program provides can also help you understand if there's any product-market fit. However, if the fit is not there (yet), then you are able to tackle the issue early on, and the customers can be retained as future customers once the product is 100% ready to launch.
Truth is, many successful startups and their entrepreneurs have never participated in an acceleration program. But startup accelerators can grow your business more in three months than in a year or two, if you know how to properly capitalize on all your opportunities.