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As we've seen in previous articles, a pitch deck is the visual representation of a company's story with a strong narrative. The main objective is to present it to investors to raise money for your project. It should include information about the business, the market opportunity, the team, the financials, and the business model.
When creating a pitch deck, it can help to start with a blank template. Usually entrepreneurs will start with a template from a competitor and that can lead to a lot of assumptions. You want to create a pitch deck that is unique to your business and tells your singular story.
Remember to keep it simple. Your deck should be no longer than 10-17 slides and each slide should take no longer than 3 minutes to present.
Finally, remember to include a call-to-action at the end of your pitch deck. This is where you ask for the investors' commitment and it should be included on every slide.
Basically, the three keys to powerful pitch decks that get funded are:
As mentioned before, a pitch deck is a slide deck with a strong narrative. It includes all the information investors may need to make an informed decision. It is a good idea to build the pitch deck with investors in mind, as they will be the ones reviewing the slides. That being said, it is still important to cater to a broad audience, as the document might also be seen by potential employees, partners and vendors.
A pitch deck can include information about the company's history, business model, growth, competitive advantage, and metrics. Keep in mind that the pitch deck is only a summary of the business plan, so keep it to the point. Investors will download the full version of the business plan when investing.
If you are looking for inspiration, there are plenty of pitch deck templates online. In this article, we will be going over some tips and best practices that can help you create a good pitch deck.
Here you have 9 points that we recommend to include in your pitch deck.
Below are essentially the 9 slides that you want to include inside your presentation, let's check more extensively on each one:
The first thing you should do is to figure out who your audience is. There is no point creating the best pitch deck in the world if it's not going to get in front of the right people. To maximize your ROI, you will want to make sure that your pitch deck is seen by investors, potential employees, partners, and vendors. To do this, you will want to make sure that your pitch deck is not only visually appealing and well-designed but also covers the most important aspects of your company. The best way to do this is by using one pitch deck and breaking it down into sections.
The slide for the problem should be a way to explain what gap you are solving for the market. Much better if it is something painful that people can identify with. Remember to show the one problem you are solving with your idea, not two or three. You need to come across as someone that is focused and expert in that particular area.
The solution must be concise and clear. Moreover, it may be a good idea to outline why it makes sense now. Timing is money in business and being at the right time in history is the key. Try to avoid statements showing you being the only one doing this. There may be at least 100 people that have come up with the same idea before you and other companies may be tackling it with a different outlook.
If you have an idea, the first thing you need to do is to make sure that there is a market need for the product that you are trying to build. That is to say, you should do a good amount of research to understand if there is a real need for that product, whether there is a competitor in the space and whether people would be willing to pay for it.
Show on this slide a graph that outlines the market growth, both past and future, so that investors can quantify the upside and potential ROI on their investment. Make sure you include sources from your research. Concerning the product: this slide is all about showing screenshots of your idea in action. You can add descriptions about the product itself and, if you already have them, some quotes from your happiest clients talking about how much they love your product.
This slide should show the time-period growth of the business, for example month by month. This is the slide where you would include what investors want to see on every pitch deck they review. To give you an idea, accelerator programs like Y Combiner expect at least 15% month over month growth.
The team is probably one of the most important slides in any pitch deck. Investors will want to know who is driving the project and what makes them so special to perform the mission and vision you've properly explained in the first slides. As we saw, there are at least 100 other heads going around your same idea. For that reason the idea is 10% and 90% is the way you are proposing to take action. Fill in the team slide describing the members of the leadership team (ideally co founders). List in bullet points what have been the two or three achievements from every member.
One thing to keep in mind is that it is not enough to understand if there is a need for the product that you are trying to build and if there is a direct competitor. You also have to understand if there is an indirect competitor, which would be a company that is not in the same vertical as you, but that is in the same industry. This is important because if there is an indirect competitor that is doing really, really well, then you have a good basis to think that you will also be successful.
A diagram would be enough to show the investor the competitors you have. How you compare to them and where you land with your value proposition. You need to differentiate yourself from the rest so that the person reviewing the slide gets what makes your company so original and different.
Another basic would be the numbers. You will need to have ready your financials in an Excel format as investors surely will want to see after reviewing your pitch deck. There's no need to go into much detail on the deck. All you need is to provide a summary. If anyone asks for more that would be a good sign the pitch is working.
Believe it or not, many founders forget to include in their pitch deck their contact information. If you have a large history on social media you should include the links on the cover slide. As you can imagine, interested investors will most likely look you up and will also reach out to people included in the project to ask for references.
If you're serious about your pitch deck, it may be a good idea to ask someone with a high-level understanding of sales psychology to look at it. If you make a few small changes to images, text, and placement, you can make a bigger impact on your pitch deck success.
Creating a pitch deck for your business can be a lot of work, but it can also be a great way to share your story with potential investors. If you have any questions about creating a pitch deck, please let us know in the comments below!
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