Before you go on the Shark Tank, do your homework and know which sharks are best for your product. Find out about their backgrounds, personalities, and track records (how successful are they with helping businesses become successful). If you’re fortunate enough to get a deal with a shark(s), you will also be scrutinized as part of the shark’s due diligence effort which can last many months. So, you should do the same to them before you go on.

In addition to the homework, make sure you practice, practice, practice, and more practice. Make absolute sure you have rehearsed your business presentation speech so that you are flawless. Remember: first impressions go a long way in whether the sharks will have confidence to invest in you as explained on When they invest in your business, they invest in you. If you saw someone who had difficulty telling you exactly how your product works or your business plan, would you like want to invest in that business? I doubt it.

Conduct an honest review of your product or service. Ask others for their opinions on whether they think your product is appealing enough for a large segment of the population. If it isn’t, then it’s likely that the sharks will not be interested. Remember: they generally do not like to invest in niche-type businesses even if you have sales. Speaking of sales, make sure you have some. Although it’s possible that an idea alone can be sold to the sharks, they would be much more inclined to invest in an active business with a sales history rather than take a bigger chance on an unproven product as described on

Don’t be one of the losers who go on the show with little or no idea about their numbers associated with their companies. Don’t be like the three fools who went on the show trying to sell their beer-flavored ice cream. They weren’t able to articulate the total dollar amount of the orders they currently had. They argued that they were not accountants and were looking for the sharks to provide that type of support. Robert Herjavec clearly explained to these fools that there are some numbers that every business owners needs to know – there is no excuse for it. It’s kind of like saying I don’t know my social security number or my birth date because I’m not a numbers kind of guy.