Digital Business

23 Oct


The online pitch for your digital business should present a good business case to convince investors to part with their money.  The pitch package must be supported by researched facts and include numbers. Words are not enough. Investors want to see revenue streams with achievable, but ambitious, projections. The business offering must be thoroughly described, through the use of wireframes, graphics and images. Think details. Investors need to know who the customers will be for the business and how many of them are out there. Who is the competition? Every business has a competitor somewhere, even if it’s tangential. The pitch must also describe, and show numerically, the growth plan and provide an exit strategy for the investor.


Design and Function of the online pitch

Presentation of your business online often makes the difference to the success of the crowdfunding campaign. The design needs to showcase the best aspects of the business well, with a clear logical layout of content. Information and text presented should be readable, showing an informed use of graphics and fonts, for example a light green font on a pale background might look trendy but it is difficult to read.


Your website will need to present clear, well-researched arguments giving solid financial reasons that will encourage an investor to put his/her money into your digital business start-up.

The online pitch should include:

  • Introduction to the digital startup and the problem it solves.
  • Clear breakdown and analysis of the impact of the problem, as expressed in proven facts and real numbers
  • A full description of the digital offering that is linked to how it solves the problem described, with numbers of potential impact
  • Building on the above, provide a complete 3D description of the persons or groups most impacted by the problem who are potential customers for the digital business. Express the potential customer base in numbers, how many people?
  • Building on the above, how much will those people/customers pay for the digital business or service? How will they pay for it? Describe the revenue stream
  • How much will it cost to earn this revenue? Calculate the expenses the business will incur as it builds a customer base. How long will it take for the business to recoup your investment?
  • Provide in-depth and summary income/expense projections and your own cash flow. Taking all the above points into consideration, how much investment do you need?
  • How much equity will you sell for how much investment? Explain the recoupment.
  • Provide a strategy for attracting investors to your online pitch.


  1. The unmet need the business fills, or the problem the business solves. How serious is the problem? How many people are impacted?
  2. The business solution in summary and in detail, with images if possible.
  3. Who will pay for what the digital business is selling? Who is the target customer? How many of them are there?
  4. Who are the business competitors? What do they currently do? In what way is your business better? How will you beat them?
  5. How will the business earn money? What is the revenue model? Project revenue to three years.
  6. How much will it cost to earn the above revenue? Where will you build your technology? What software will you need to build it? Who has the expertise? Who will you need to hire?
  7. What is the design of your technology in detail. Use a wireframe.
  8. What is a user-case scenario for your digital business.
  9. How much investment are you looking for? How much equity will you give up? What is the return on investment (ROI) for the investor?



Assessment Criteria
Online pitch

·         Convincingpresentation and clear explanation and analysis of the impact of the problem, as expressed in proven facts and real numbers

·         A full description of the digital offering that is linked to how it solves the problem described, with numbers of potential impact

·         Who are potential customers for the digital business. Again we need numbers, how many people?

·         Building on the above, how much will those people/customers pay for the digital business or service? How will they pay for it? Describe the revenue stream

·         How much will it cost to earn this revenue? Calculate the expenses the business will incur as it builds a customer base.

·         Calculate income/expense projections and cash flow. How much money do you need? How much equity will you offer the investor, and when will the investor get a return?


Comprehensive business and market research has been conducted into each area of the report, numbers have been extracted and extrapolated and used to support assumptions.

Research has contributed to the report being a coherently argued critical analysis exploring the complexities and potential risk factors of the digital business.

The expectation is that all research is referenced and that referencing and citation is perfect.

Visual design and production of pitch

The design and graphics really add to the ‘branding’ of the digital business. The video is well produced, has sound and presents a convincing case for investment.

Grammar and Expression

The pitch and report is written in proper business syntax using no slang or text-speak. It avoids making off-hand assumptions. Clear expression: including grammar and spelling: the extent to which the work makes effective and correct use of the English language.


The 2nd part is Marketing Plan

Background (10%)

You should begin by outlining the rationale for the venture, offering background information, what the idea is, and what the digital marketing problems that it faces are.


This is where you should say what prompted the idea for the business/the venture/ the idea, a perceived gap in the market; a skill you have developed or stock you have acquired, e.g


  • We have found that stores specialising in equipment and clothing for windsurfers
    all aimed at the experienced customer and are not welcoming to beginners.  We can do             better …


¨  Online information about gyms/sports centres tends to be limited to tariffs and hours of                opening.  We would like to help customers find a centre which fits their style and           ambitions …


©Two second-year students have just secured a regular supply of miscellaneous USB and               Thunderbolt connection cables and junctions (surplus to requirements of a main user).  There                is a potential demand     for these parts from individual customers, whom a car boot sale would      not reach, so they are hoping to sell them online …

ª  With existing opportunities for online discussion you seem to end up talking to like-  minded contributors.  It resembles an echo-chamber.  We want to provide something more stimulating …


Prototype to Market (10%)

You should decide what would be best to market. For example:

  • Your blog
  • One of your own websites
  • A simple eCommerce store (for example, built with Tictail)
  • An affiliate store
  • A Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram account etc. that is yours

The key thing here is to have something to experiment with. It does not have to be your ‘personal’ account that you use, it could simply be a new account that you own and administer.

N.B. Please ensure that you make clear that you are undertaking an ‘educational’ project, and seeking to understand how different approaches work, and that you are not looking to gain sales.


Here you could say how you will try to make people aware of your offering, your value proposition.  What channels are you planning to use, and what customer relationship will you try to set up?


  • You might use tweets to draw attention to the blog you want people to read on WordPress.
  • You might set up an affiliate store with Amazon to sell your cables, or even use Amazon as your dropshipper.
  • You might use Facebook to get prospects to visit your website.



Audience (20%)

Here you need to establish a clear scope in terms of the audience and communities you need to reach, and work out which technologies are most suited to reaching these audiences and communities. For example, a Competitor Analysis, SWOT Analysis (see Safko and Brake for details of their approach to a SWOT – this is NOT a traditional SWOT), Stakeholder Analysis, Demographic Analysis etc. can all help.


The idea of SWOT analysis here is to see how you would be placed, relative to your competitors, in using Social Media to market your offering.  Perhaps you already write a blog on windsurfing, or have experience in using Instagram?  The models for developing strategy come from Safko and Brake.  These are plans which may be fleshed out.


Marketing Strategies (30%)


This section should cover a variety of aspects including, for example:

  • SEO and/or PPC based on a keyword analysis
  • metadata considerations along with domain names etc.
  • Social media campaigns
  • Email marketing etc.


You can use the ACCESS Model from Safko and Brake to ensure that you consider your audience (including demographics and how ‘sticky’ they are). You can use personnae to show the suitability of your approaches.  will need to have a concept, consider the competition and their approaches, show that it is possible by testing, use Social Media.


Here you can revisit your Aims and Objectives and refine as necessary.

It is through the objectives that the success of the venture can be assessed.


Please show how you have used tools like Personae and Customer Journeys to design your strategies. For example, show the linkages between these journeys and use of baskets, landing pages etc. Illustrate how your approach suits particular persona.


These strategies should be formulated as a series of experiments that you could report on (although not in this work).


How might you be able to test the success of these strategies?   E.g. You can check the effectiveness of SEO using analytic tools (e.g. courtesy of Google).  You can create personae to represent your segmented customer base, and follow their path through the web.  In this report you only need to propose some experiments.


Legal Aspects (10%)

You should also identify the keys laws that you need to consider for your strategies and any specific mandatory actions  (e.g. DPA Registration).


Review (20%)

After this you should offer a critical appraisal of your work.  This should include reflection on the plan, the identification of any weaknesses and risks and how these could be managed. You can also consider here how to deal with changes in the use of technologies (e.g. Google updates).

Bibliography and Referencing

You should provide a Bibliography in Harvard style and use Harvard referencing throughout.

Word guide




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Posted by on October 23, 2017 in academic writing, Academic Writing



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