I happened on this question in Quora…
Currently I have a business idea in mind which has not been published. Now as a foreigner, I would like to find investors in the U.S. as this would be the best place to start. How would it be possible to get in touch with investors without having a developed product? There isn’t any alpha stage or social website yet, it’s just an idea which has to be kickstarted.
…and I decided to highlight it here because 1) it’s a question I get all the time, and 2) there’s a delightful collection of really good answers to it.
Aside: If you don’t know about Quora, but you’re interested enough in startups and business management to be reading this blog, you should know about Quora. It’s a remarkable social media question and answer site. Unlike pretty much all others, this one works. It has a collection of interesting questions and good answers.
David Rose, leader of a New York angel investor group and founder of Gust, wrote my favorite answer:
“Having value” and “being fundable” are two completely different things. What the more experienced responders here are saying is completely accurate: While a good idea is usually a necessary ingredient for the formation of a good company, it is not sufficient by itself for any serious investor to fund.
Why? Because there are also other good ideas out there, some of which have already been developed, tested and put into practice, thus decreasing the amount of risk an investor will be taking. The bottom line is that ideas by themselves are simply not fundable by professional investors.
And he illustrates that point with this outstanding graphic: