There Are Just 4 Ways to Earn Startup Funding in 2016

Adam Rowe

At TechCrunch, Shabih Rizvi and Muzzammil Zaveri of KPCB have recently taken a look at the universe of early-stage startups, all of which want one big thing: Money.

Getting startup funding as a tiny or even barely existent business is a massive chore, but in the tech community of 2016, it can be broken down into just four different methods. And the one that everyone thinks of first — knocking on the door of your friendly neighborhood venture capitalist — is actually the last option you should try.

Here's the list:

1: Bootstrapping

Pros: You retain maximum ownership. Cons: It's likely unsustainable due to your eventual growth.

2: Incubators & Accelerators

Depending on your (lack of) experience or opportunities, joining one of these might be the right decision. You'll have more support, along with the accountability to prove you've got a viable business.

3: Online Platforms

Products that need feedback or might have a strong demand will do well to find an online fund-raising platform. The crowdfunding model will draw in both regular joes and international angel investors.

4: Venture Capitalists

Try this one last: If you've succeeded at any of the first three ways to snag startup funding, VCs will actually trust you to know what you're doing. The grassroots approach can be hit or miss, but the VC approach is even tougher.

Other tidbits of advice from the article: “Don’t worry too much about today’s macro environment,” “stay focused on customers and users,” and “know that VCs invest in people, not pitch decks.” Good luck.

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Adam is a writer at and has worked as a tech writer, blogger and copy editor for the last decade. He's also a Forbes Contributor on the publishing industry (and Digital Book World 2018 award finalist) and has appeared in publications including Popular Mechanics and IDG Connect. When not glued to TechMeme, he loves obsessing over 1970s sci-fi art.