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Time is money
"With a startup, everything happens too quickly and changes too often to fit in a 45-page business plan," says MyPunchbowl CEO Matt Douglas. (For more of his startup story, click here.)

Instead, Douglas and Conta used three separate documents to pitch VCs. A one-page document detailed the event-planning site they envisioned. An Excel spreadsheet listed costs and projected revenue streams. Finally, a PowerPoint deck explained the entrepreneurs' five-year vision and listed existing tools like save-the-date reminders and customizable e-vites, as well as plans to add a vendor search function that could find, for example, "all the mariachi bands in Phoenix."

As the VCs dug into MyPunchbowl's business model during their due diligence, Douglas added a fourth, equally brief competitive analysis document explaining that MyPunchbowl would stand out from the slew of event-planning Web sites by adding unique party-planning tools such as a pick-the-date algorithm that recommends the best date for a particular event.

NEXT: Show you're worth it

LAST UPDATE: Apr 21 2009 | 10:57 AM ET
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