Fundraising is a Numbers Game

Matt Preuss
Marketing Manager

Raising venture capital is a numbers game.

The Fundraising Funnel

At the top of your funnel, you are identifying potential investors through research, direct outreach, and intros from your peers. In the middle of the funnel, you are sharing your pitch deck, meeting with GPs, and perhaps the entire partnership. At the end of the funnel, there are (hopefully) multiple term sheets and negotiations ahead of closing.

This process is full of “nos”, “maybes”, and “ghosts.” Inevitably, different investors will pass for different reasons so it is important to have a thorough list to keep the momentum going. Between our own product, the Founders Forward Podcast, and online resources, we’ve found the following benchmarks for how many investors you need in your funnel:

How Many Investors Should You Expect to Target

  • 40+ — Mark Suster of Upfront Ventures, “Ideally, you want to have 40–50 qualified and interested investors in your funnel.” Learn more here.
  • 48 — The average # of investors a Visible user has in a Fundraising Pipeline. Learn more about our Fundraising tools here.
  • 50+ — Gale Wilkinson of Vitalize Ventures, “If you don’t have a list and you’re raising now, don’t worry. Spend a weekend and write down who are your top, you know, 50 to 75 that you want to target?” Learn more here.
  • 60+ — Brett Brohl of Bread & Butter Ventures, “You’re going to have to reach out to probably about 60 funds and have about that many meetings to close a round.” Learn more here.
  • 100+ — Elizabeth Yin of Hustle Fund, “I made up a rule of thumb: 5-100-500. Over 5 weeks, meet with 100 investors to close $500k in your seed round. If you want to close $1m, double all of these numbers.” Learn more here.

Before building your list of investors it is important to understand your ideal investor. Once you have an understanding of your ideal investor, check out free databases, like Visible Connect, to find investors for your startup. Give it a try and filter through our 5,000+ early-stage investors below:

Find Investors

P.S. If you filter by “Verified” that means these investors have personally verified the data in their profile is correct.

Related Reads

How to Build an Investor List with Gale Wilkinson of Vitalize

On the Founders Forward Podcast, Gale Wilkinson of Vitalize Ventures offers countless takeaways to help early-stage founders fundraise — covering everything from list building to ownership benchmarks. Listen now

The Fundraising Wisdom That Helped Our Founders Raise $18B in Follow-On Capital

The team at First Round Review shares an in-depth guide for running a fundraising process using best practices from their portfolio companies. Read more

Building Your Ideal Investor Persona

On the Visible Blog, we break down the attributes that a founder should consider when identifying their ideal investor. Read more

You may also enjoy:
[Webinar Recording] VC Fund Performance Metrics to Share When it’s ‘Early’ with Preface Ventures
It’s common for venture firms to start raising their next fund in the last year of capital deployment, typically years 3-4 of a fund’s life. This poses a sort of chicken-and-egg problem because many of the common fund performance metrics that Limited Partners use to drive allocation decisions only become reliable, and therefore more meaningful, around year six (Source: Cambridge Associates). Farooq Abbasi, founder and General Partner of Preface Ventures, created a Seed Stage Enterprise VC Funding Napkin to help GPS think through alternative fund metrics that help communicate performance outside the traditional indicators that LPs use to measure success for more mature funds. The Seed Stage Enterprise VC Funding Napkin helps answer the question "What is good enough to raise a subsequent fund in the current market conditions". Farooq from Preface Ventures joined us on Tuesday, February 27th for a discussion about the fund performance metrics GPs can use to benchmark and communicate fund performance when it's still 'early'. View the recording below. Webinar Topics The issue with ‘typical’ fund performance metrics for ‘early’ funds Overview of Preface Venture’s Seed Stage Enterprise VC Funding Napkin Deep dive into alternative early performance benchmarks How to keep track of alternative fund performance metrics How to leverage alternative fund performance indicators into your fundraising narrative Inside look into how Preface Ventures keeps LPs up to date Q&A Resources From the Webinar Christoph Janz's What does it take to raise capital, in SaaS, in 2023? Preface Ventures' A GP's View on VC Fund Performance When It's Early Diversity VC About Preface Ventures Preface Ventures is a New York City-based firm started in 2020 led by Farooq Abbasi. Preface invests $500-$2M at the pre-seed and seed stage into startups who are building the Frontier Enterprise structure. Preface has 20 active positions in Fund II and 7 active positions in Fund III. (Learn more)
Product Updates
Product update: Visible AI Updates
Customer Stories
Case Study: How Moxxie Ventures uses Visible to increase operational efficiency at their VC firm
How to Start and Operate a Successful SaaS Company