When it’s common practice in an industry – any industry – to use Microsoft Excel to capture data and email to share that data, there is an opportunity to create a software as a service (SaaS) upgrade in that industry. That’s what the founders of Rivur found in the commercial real estate (CRE) developer marketplace.

The Commercial Real Estate (CRE) Marketplace

Commercial Real Estate is a huge industry, and an old-school industry, meaning it is slow to adopt new technology. However, anytime there’s a downturn in the economy, the CRE space gets hammered. Then the players consolidate, rebuild, and come back a little stronger as the economy improves. During each cycle, there’s an opportunity – a trend, even – to fix some things that were broken in the previous cycle.

The SaaS Application

One of those things that needs an upgrade is the way CRE developers deliver financial reports to their investors and financiers, namely the banks. Today, they use Excel spreadsheets and email. That’s your first clue that there’s an opportunity to upgrade. Spreadsheets are great, but spreadsheets are manual and clunky, especially when you have massive amounts of data, lots of repetition, and many individual entities who need access to the information.

The Pitch

Brent makes a compelling case here; however, there’s always room for improvement. Among the suggestions that we gave Brent:

  • Slow down. When you talk to fast, you lose your audience.
  • Spell out the name “R-I-V-U-R”, because it obviously sounds like “river”, but you’re nowhere close if you go to river.com.
  • Be careful of your wording. “Developers” in a tech environment means software developers, not real estate developers.

One of the big reasons Pitch Practice is helpful to new entrepreneurs is that we – myself included – don’t realize that our words are very familiar to us, but others don’t understand the way we explain things. We’re using our words, not the words that will appeal to our audiences. When you practice your pitch in front of real people, you get objective feedback. The audience brings things like “I couldn’t understand the name of your company”, or “you speak really fast” to our attention, and we have the opportunity to address them.

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