How to be a Demo God
Originally published: 18/10/2017 15:44
Last version published: 17/04/2020 12:40
Publication number: ELQ-73672-2
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How to be a Demo God

This post has been created for anyone who needs to make a 10/10 demo. It's a skill you really need to get good at!


Several times a year a group of executives from startups do a six-minute demo of their products to an audience of venture capitalists, analysts, and journalists. This name of the event is, logically, DEMO.

It’s a great occasion—especially if you understand the dance that’s going on: Entrepreneurs acting as if they don’t need venture capital, and venture capitalists acting as if they don’t need entrepreneurs. (This is like acting prudish in a brothel.)

This post is for anyone who has to give a good demo, whether at DEMO or anywhere else. 

I should probably throw in another seventy vice presidents of marketing. And seventy PR account execs. Let’s call it three hundred or so people. But it’s also for anyone who has to demo a product to raise capital, make a sale, garner press, or recruit an employee.

  • Step n°1 |

    Create something worth demoing.

    If you want to be a demo god, create a great product to demo. Demos are excellent PR opportunities, but use them when you’re ready, not when an opportunity occurs. If your product is mediocre and you don’t do a demo, only you will know that it’s unremarkable. If you do a demo, the whole world will know it.

    How to be a Demo God image
  • Step n°2 |

    Bring two of everything.

    There is one place for duplication: equipment. Expect everything to break the night before you’re on stage, so bring two, maybe even three, computers, phones, thumb drives, whatever you’ll need for your demo.

    How to be a Demo God image
  • Step n°3 |

    Get organized in advance.

    You should never futz around during a demo—for example, looking for folders and files on your hard disk. You have weeks to prepare for these six minutes; you’re clueless if you haven’t set everything up in advance.

    How to be a Demo God image
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