How to be a data-driven GP to win more deals now

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A 2023 report by EarlyBird Ventures revealed that 84% of firms have plans to increase their focus on data resources. This is no surprise considering the transformative potential data has to help VCs source deals, manage deals efficiently, and drive internal improvements. 

But a higher focus on data comes with a catch: Firms need the right processes and technologies in place to optimize data. 

Our latest guide reveals three ways that General Partners (GPs) can take the lead on data initiatives that result in their teams finding (and closing) more high quality deals. Download the guide or keep reading for the highlights.

Data-driven relationship management

Building and maintaining relationships is crucial for firms to source future deals and differentiate themselves from competitors. But relying on memory and informal communication channels like Slack or email for relationship management is not scalable—especially when it comes to the vast and complex networks of GPs. 

These senior firm members need a way to systematically share their networks with their team, without creating additional data entry and process. Relationship intelligence features like automatic data capture solve this problem by providing the entire firm with valuable context about relationships and interactions.

Data-driven relationship management helps firms to source more deals, and make the connections their portfolio companies need to generate growth. As Amira Ouji, Senior Director of Portfolio Success at Revolution said: “When founders come to me with requests, I use our network to source solutions. I call Affinity our ‘relationship ChatGPT’ because this is how we keep track of folks in our network.” 

Promoting effective collaboration with data

Centralizing, organizing, and keeping deal information up-to-date is essential for efficient deal team operations. Conflicting communications and crossed wires waste time and can undermine a firm's reputation. 

A shared source of accurate information gives teams the data they need to collaborate effectively, put their best foot forward, and avoid missed opportunities. Putting this system in place doesn’t have to be complex. 

Jocelyn Goldfein, Managing Director at Zetta Venture Partners explained, “We use Affinity to stay on the same page and hold each other accountable. It’s been a game changer for collaboration.” 

Tools like Affinity automate data capture from everyone in a firm’s email and calendar—which can save up to 226 hours of manual data entry per dealmaker per year. This ensures that everyone has the necessary context to move quickly and, critically, in the same direction.

Affinity saves dealmakers up to 226 hours of manual data entry every year.

Removing data drudgery

Data is valuable, but when deal teams spend excessive time managing it in their CRM, it becomes an obstacle to efficient deal execution.And while GPs are low-touch users compared to Associates and Analysts, they need to know that their CRM integrates with existing workflows and provides proactive insights. 

Nolan English, Director of Portfolio Success at SOSV described the difference that GP-buy in can make: “We have General Partners at SOSV that are big champions of Affinity and use Affinity very actively. That was a huge help in rolling it out because it was something that they saw the value in, and when they started using it regularly, their teams then adopted it as well.”

Extensions help lower the barrier to CRM adoption, and advanced reporting functionalities deliver the granularity and specificity that GPs and their Platform Managers need for effective prospect analysis, deal flow evaluation, and team performance assessment. 

With a CRM tailored to private capital and equipped with automation features, firms can make faster data-driven decisions so that they find the best deals before competitors do.

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How Affinity helps GPs become data-driven

  • Relationship intelligence: Without relationship-based insights, firms risk not being involved in the right deal—or not closing it—because they’re slow to engage or because they don’t understand the dynamics of the people involved. With automated data capture and analysis, Affinity’s relationship intelligence solves this challenge.
  • Extensions: Affinity offers a suite of extensions that bring data-driven intelligence to the places where GPs work. From Chrome and Gmail to Outlook and Zoom, these extensions provide easy access to relevant CRM information, relationship insights, and enriched data. This gives GPs all the context they need, even when on the go or in the midst of back-to-back meetings.
  • Analytics: Affinity Analytics empowers GPs to surface real-time insights, analyze data, and identify trends that shape their business. Interactive dashboards enable GPs to optimize team performance, understand deal origination, and identify process blockers. Additionally, the Affinity API allows for the integration of proprietary and external data sources, further enhancing sourcing and opportunity insights.

Transforming deal sourcing and deal management with data

Data-driven dealmaking is becoming increasingly commonplace among VC firms. By introducing the right strategies and tools, GPs can stay ahead of the curve and maximize how they use data to source deals and introductions, promote effective collaboration, and reduce the time deal teams need to dedicate to data entry. 

Affinity’s platform and extensions offer GPs a seamless way to capitalize on the potential of data, gain valuable insights, and remain competitive in a challenging market. Download The Guide to Becoming a Data-Driven GP: Miss out on fewer deals with data, for more information on the strategies outlined here.

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