8 Surprising Facts You Never Knew About “Shark Tank”
Here’s a fun fact about us: We’re obsessed with Shark Tank. Between the catty repartee between Sharks and the often-ridiculous pitches, we can’t get enough. But even we didn’t know some of the following behind-the-scenes secrets about the show.
It’s Really Hard to Get on the Show
Entrepreneurs interested in appearing on the show can apply via Shark Tank’s website or by attending an open call. The process of applying is simple enough, but it’s way harder to actually make it on the show. According to a casting director, around 100,000 people apply each season, and the Sharks meet with about 120.
But Not Everyone Who Makes It Actually Applied
That said, applying via the website or via an open call aren’t the only ways to get on the show. Apparently, Shark Tank employs scouts who troll crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, as well as attend trade shows to find interesting businesses (and entrepreneurs) that might be a fit for the show.
Not All Pitches Make It to Air
According to Mark Cuban, approximately 20 percent of the pitches the Sharks see never air. Even if the ideas are great, it’s ultimately up to the show’s producers to determine each segment’s entertainment value.
The Average Pitch Lasts About an Hour
What viewers see in ten to 20 minutes actually takes a whole lot longer than that IRL. While the average pitch lasts an hour, the longest pitch ever was two and a half hours and was for the Plate Topper.
Deals Aren’t Actually Closed While Cameras Roll
Just because a Shark agrees to a deal during the show doesn’t mean it’s going to go through. After the cameras stop recording, the Sharks do their due diligence to make sure all of the entrepreneur’s claims are accurate. Daymond John told Business Insider that the closing percentage of deals made on television was around 80 percent in Season 7.
The Beginning of the Pitch Is Super Awkward
Once entrepreneurs enter the room and take their place on the rug in front of the Sharks, there’s 30 seconds of silence while the production crew adjusts their cameras. According to Eric Bandholz (who appeared on the show with his company Beardbrand), “You’re just standing there…The Sharks are smiling awkwardly. The whole thing is pretty intense.”
Food and Fashion Are King
One way to maximize your chances of getting picked for the show is to tailor your pitch based on what’s worked in the past. TJ Hale, the host of "Shark Tank Podcast," crunched the numbers and found that of a sampling of 107 deals, almost half were in either the food or fashion and beauty categories.
There’s a Psychiatrist on Set
Well, this was unexpected. According to Business Insider, there’s an on-set psych who meets with each entrepreneur after the pitch. When you think about it, it kind of makes sense, since these are people with little to no media experience taking a huge risk that potentially millions of people will see.