The Pitch Deck
If you have a concept or a business and want to raise funds, whether it is the first seed round or the tenth, the process of developing an investment pitch deck might be daunting. You will need to design an investment pitch deck that captures potential investors’ attention and provides them with all the information they need to make an informed decision.
While there are several publications on creating a great pitch deck, few provide insight into what makes one effective. Learn how to create an investment pitch deck that will pique the interest of investors and increase your chances of receiving funding right away! You will discover the fundamental aspects that all successful pitch decks must have, as well as the dos and don’ts that can lead to your proposal being rejected by a potential investor.
Establish an investor-friendly tone with your pitch deck
Most investors want to engage with entrepreneurs who appear professional and knowledgeable about their industry. Your presentation materials will make the initial impression; therefore, they should be well-researched and organised. Remember that overdoing it on design and content can never go wrong. Your goal should be to make everything clear, concise, practical, entertaining, and simple to read or skim. This includes formatting slides (headlines at the top of each page) and additional backup details in your appendix section logically.
After you have finished your first draft, go back, and review it for tone. Your presentation’s style should be clear, concise, and straightforward. Avoiding fluff is an important part of projecting confidence; avoid phrases like “extremely” or “hugely,” which are frequently used by people who want to sound important. Instead of qualifiers, use more explicit details in their place. For example, “we have grown” can be replaced with “we had 100 paying users in June 2017.”
Avoid Making These Mistakes in your pitch deck
You don’t have a backstory about why you started your company- Stories are far more effective at conveying information than bullet points and numbers. Make sure you have a story about why you started your business; otherwise, investors will be confused about what motivates you and what problem you are attempting to solve.
Using unappealing visuals- You only have a few minutes to capture someone’s attention with your presentation; use it wisely! Use multimedia, graphics, and other non-boring techniques to tell your tale.
Overemphasize your product or idea – You need a fantastic product or concept to attract funds, but investors aren’t interested in hearing how fantastic you think it is. They are curious about how big it can go and why they should care. It would be best to be more concerned with how the market will receive the product.
The most effective way to make an impact with your presentation
What you present is not always as essential as how you convey it. If you do not have much experience, do not waste your time attempting to learn how to design your presentation slides—hire an expert to do it for you. Many businesses can help; if nothing else, people can recommend who might offer a good service for creating high-quality presentations at a reasonable price.
The essential thing is to personalise it. You do not have to spill your guts or expose a traumatic part of your past, but if you cannot put yourself into your company presentation—and make investors feel like they know you a little bit—it will be difficult for them to take you seriously. Your narrative does not have to be related to what you do; instead, weave in how technology has influenced where you are today (or vice versa). Say something genuine.
Do these things right away.
Create your idea. What distinguishes you? Is there anything unique about your strategy or team? Do you have a lot of traction? Whatever it is, mention it upfront and get it out of the way early. Remember to bring your credentials! Investors want to know about your experience, why they should trust you, and why now is a suitable time for them to invest. Your board members may be able to fill in some gaps here; if not, seek the assistance of a mentor or outside expert who can help paint a clear picture. Remember that the investor does not want another PowerPoint slide deck; they want their partners to invest in their fund, so spend some time developing a story that investors will want to invest in.
Consider whether your startup solves a real problem innovatively. If you cannot answer “yes,” consider revising your concept. (This is not easy.) Investors want to know that you have put in the time and effort required to create something others want. It is great to have someone interested in supporting your firm, but if they are not enthused about what you are doing, they are unlikely to be driven enough to help you grow and flourish.
-Be able to show market validation: Before investors are prepared to commit their time, money, and energy to your startup, you must first demonstrate that there is a market for your product or service.
Do this before you write a word of your plan/deck.
Research. Research. Research. People have spent many hours putting their thoughts and experiences on what constitutes a great pitch deck into articles, guidelines, and white papers; take advantage of them! Read as much as you can before putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard).
Find some friends who have previously pitched decks to venture capitalists or angel investors. Inquire about their experience by asking the following questions:
Was that a good thing? What did it have going for it? What could have been done better? Starting your own company is challenging enough; do not add to your workload by presenting when you do not know how investors assess those presentations.
Use these strategies for your slides.
1. Slides should only contain one idea per presentation, so keep them brief.
2. Use simple, easy-to-read fonts and layouts.
3. Ensure that each slide has data points and statistics relevant to your target audience.
4. Make your points simple—limit each slide to three takeaways.
5. Double-check that all terms in each presentation are spelled correctly – investors are business savvy, and spelling errors can cost you money.
6. Do not leave any blank slides.
7. Do not disclose sales or profit estimates until you have piqued their interest in a functional product.
Too often, entrepreneurs are caught off guard by investor reactions to their pitches. Some want your idea but will not pay you for it; others may appear interested but will still not issue fat cheques. Learn how different investors often react so you know how much faith to place in your pitches.
Rather than talking about yourself, it is critical to speak about your company and its future.
-Begin with an enticing elevator pitch. When you are finished, your investors should have no questions, and they should understand why you are worth their money. Assume you are looking for $1 million in exchange for 15% equity. In that case, your 30-second pitch should explain why a $2 million opportunity exists, why it cannot happen without you, and how much your company’s investors are willing to pay for that price. Also, make it a point to emphasise what investors are getting for their money (e.g., board seats).
-Make a team slide: Investors want more than just one person’s viewpoint; they want a team that can make swift choices while remaining flexible as possibilities occur.
Is there such a thing as too much detail?
It is not easy to present data and details. On the one hand, you do not want your audience to tune out because they do not believe they comprehend your message. On the other hand, if you leave too much information out, you may miss important opportunities. Investors may pass on your project because they do not believe it has legs or there is not enough insight into a good return on investment. Finding a delicate balance is essential.
Presenting your company in a precise, step-by-step manner will help you reduce risk and increase your chances of success. A thorough strategy contains comprehensive explanations of each stage. Investors are more inclined to trust you if they believe they understand precisely what you are doing at each step of business development. They may also recommend improving your strategy or tailoring it to your personal needs. Another advantage of detail is that it appeals to visual learners, which is understandable given that investors are not typically founders. When entrepreneurs include eye-catching images, charts, and graphs in their pitch decks, investors find them easier to understand.
The most crucial element in any pitch deck
Confidence. Investors are more willing to invest in your idea(s) if they believe you understand your industry, so project confidence and competence during your presentation. You can explain why you are doing what you are doing clearly and straightforwardly. Your pitch will be more excellent if you can express yourself succinctly while remaining confident, clear, and concise. You do not want to ramble or sound insecure; make sure every word in your presentation has a purpose or conveys something important to investors. Concisely, be brief about your business plan while confident in its implementation. It will go a long way with people who are investing in you.
Include a narrative: describe why you founded your firm, what problem it solves, and how your solution works. Take potential investors on a journey with you—the more they connect with you, your narrative, and your idea, the more likely they will invest in it. If you do not have a compelling tale, it is time to make a change.
A detailed, well-thought-out business plan, combined with a compelling presentation, can help you secure funding. Investors are astute individuals who want to understand what they are investing in and how their funds can help your company thrive. If they are perplexed after reading your company plan or do not understand how it works, you risk losing them as investors. Do not allow this to happen!
If you need help with your investment pitch deck, get in touch today.