What do the best entrepreneurs do that really gets your attention as a VC? originally appeared on Quora - the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.

Answer by Joanne Chen, Partner at Foundation Capital, on Quora:

I vividly remember the time a Martech entrepreneur cold-mailed me a physical envelope. The paper of the envelope was actually a map of all the MarTech companies in the area, and he had enclosed a request for a meeting. I was impressed by the creativity and grit.

To get the attention of and/or land a meeting with a VC, you can go one of two routes:

Warm introduction

Generally, we look for a warm introduction. You can do this by getting an introduction through one of the VC's portfolio companies (this is the best method in my opinion) or asking other investors for a reference (I wouldn't recommend this unless they are an existing investor, or a non-competitive investor. If they aren't, it just raises the question, 'Why didn't they invest?') If none of these routes are available to you, go the cold calling way. This means either writing a compelling email or trying to bump into them at a conference.

Cold outreach

A few things to keep in mind when doing cold outreach: do your research on the firm. Sometimes I receive emails for startups that clearly don't fit our investment strategy. If it fits within our strategy, I'll read the email carefully. Make sure you briefly tell your story and why you are uniquely positioned to do this. Include your background + numbers / traction upfront to get their attention.

To find out more about our diligence process, read my blog post: explaining diligence through dating.

This question originally appeared on Quora - the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world. You can follow Quora on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. More questions:

Published on: Jun 26, 2017