The first document most investors will see from you is your pitch deck. Present a good one and it can unlock doors and help you take the next step with an investor. Present a bad one and you will see the consequences immediately.
Crafting a compelling pitch deck is an art and science that every entrepreneur should master as this is the first step towards a deeper due diligence. In this article, we’ll take you through the essential elements your pitch deck should include to leave a lasting impression and get the next meeting with an investor.
As your main objective with your pitch deck is to raise money it is imperative that you communicate to the investors exactly what they need to know. Investors know their math and will need to see the value you provide and that you can deliver on your promises. And you have to be precise.
Key Ingredients of an ideal Pitch Deck
What should you deck include? These are points investors will expect:
- Why/ Purpose: What is the reason for this startup and product to exist? Is there a red thread throughout your story?
- Timing: Why are working on this solution today? Why not last year or why not next year? What makes it relevant to solve at this moment.
- Problem: What is the issue you are solving?
- Solution: How do you solve the problem?
- Product: What is your solution exactly, how does it look or how does it work?
- Traction: How successful are you? How many customers do you have? How many revenues?
- TAM/ Market Size: Investors want to see how large and big your potential market is and how much of that you can capture.
- Competitors: Who do you compete with? And why are you better than them?
- Business Model: How do you make money?
- Team: Who are you and your co-founder and optionally key team members/advisors? What makes your team skilled enough to solve this problem and get the company to success?
- Fundraising: How much are you raising and how are you going to use your funds?
Rule to follow when creating your deck and narrative
Start with a Captivating Story: Great pitch decks often start with an interesting story. Your startup has a unique journey, a problem it’s solving, and a vision for the future. Begin by engaging your audience emotionally. Explain the “why” behind your venture. What inspired you to start it, and what drives your passion? This connection lays the foundation for your pitch.
Keep It Concise: Attention spans are short. Your pitch deck should be, too. Aim for 10-15 slides that convey the most critical information. Each slide should be a concise, visually appealing representation of your ideas. Avoid clutter and jargon; simplicity is key. Generally when you create your pitch deck, about 10-15 slides will suffice. Longer leave-behind decks are normally only required when your company is a bit larger.
Define the Problem Clearly: Start by addressing the problem you’re solving. Define it in simple terms. Highlight its significance and the pain points it causes. Make your audience feel the problem’s urgency.
Present Your Solution: After identifying the problem, introduce your solution. Explain how your product or service effectively addresses the issue. Use visuals, diagrams, or prototypes to make it crystal clear. What makes your solution unique or innovative? Show it off.
Showcase Market Opportunity: Investors want to know there’s a substantial market for your solution. Provide data on the market size, growth trends, and your target audience. Convey why this market is ripe for disruption and why your startup is best positioned to do so.
Prove Traction: Numbers speak volumes. Highlight your startup’s traction, whether it’s user growth, revenue, partnerships, or any other relevant metrics. Show that your solution is gaining momentum and real-world validation.
Share Your Team’s Expertise: Investors invest in people as much as ideas. Introduce your team and their qualifications. Showcase why your collective expertise makes you uniquely qualified to execute your vision.
Address Competition and Barriers to Entry: Acknowledge your competition, and explain how your startup stands out. What are your unique selling points? Additionally, discuss any barriers to entry that protect your business from competitors.
Financial Projections and Ask: Be transparent about your finances. Present realistic projections for revenue, expenses, and growth. Clearly state your funding: ask—how much capital you need and how you plan to use it.
Engage Your Audience: Throughout your pitch, engage your audience. Encourage questions and discussions. Be prepared to adapt your pitch based on the interests and concerns of your audience.
End with a Strong Call to Action: Conclude your pitch with a compelling call to action. What do you want your audience to do next? Whether it’s scheduling a follow-up meeting or investing, make it clear.
Practice, Practice, Practice:Your pitch deck is only as good as your ability to present it. Practice your pitch until it flows naturally. Anticipate questions and objections, and be ready with persuasive answers.
The attention of investors is hard to catch. An exciting pitch deck can set you apart. It’s not just a presentation; it’s a storytelling tool that showcases your passion, problem-solving abilities, success and potential. Craft it with care, and it can be the catalyst that propels your startup to further success. Remember, it’s not just about what you say; it’s how you say it.
If you want to learn more about creating and maintaining proper due diligence documents for your data room including your pitchdeck, talk to the DueDash team.