What a resume is to your job, a pitch presentation is for a new business. Those 10-12 slides are all you have to highlight about your company, products, services etc. to potential and existing clients, business partners or stakeholders and to even showcase your story in front of prospective investors. Thus, a pitch deck should articulate and look interesting and compelling every time as this document can either be a deal maker or a deal breaker for your business.
Hence, after working on some and receiving feedback from trustworthy sources, we bring to you the must-do’s while creating your pitch deck. Here we go-
1.Narrate your story
Just like the first impression, the opening or the first slide is the most crucial for your presentation. So, to grab the attention of your audience state the below two things clearly-
- Company overview
- Differentiator or USP
This PowerPoint (ppt) slide should inform about what your company does and how are your products and services are different or better than others available in the marketplace. It should ideally be self-explanatory so that when presenting, you can weave an attention-grabbing story about the birth of your startup and the problem it aims to solve. Also, when presenting about the business, be mindful of not sharing too many financial details in the beginning as it can take away from the connection that you may otherwise form with your audience. Also, in case the investor need information, they can always ask for it.
2. Hook them with unique propositions
Now that you have informed about the basics of your company, the next key component of winning investors or business partners are showcasing your unique propositions. Hence, have a dedicated slide on your gamut of products and services. This slide should focus on the problem-solving capability of your company’s products in a way that no other business in the same league can provide. Therefore, it becomes important to highlight any proof of sales, licenses, patents and significant purchase orders or distribution deals that can help grab attention and make your company a frontrunner for that investment or business.
3. Know our target audience
A business is all about making money. Hence, as much as you should know your offerings, it is equally essential to know your target audience. After all, your products or services will be used by them. Also, the clarity of knowing your target audience gives the investors the faith in your business and to validate their involvement. So, in this slide use age group, gender, demographic data and psychographic features to determine your target audience. Therefore, show research that backs up your claims and, in the end, always show the investor or partner, how this specific customer group will lead to profitability.
4.Showcase your plan
Once the basics are explained, showcase your plan. This slide should highlight what the company has achieved till now and the vision it has for the next 3-4 years. This gives your potential investor or business partner clarity on the path your business is taking to fulfil its vision and also, the projected growth plan. This is a critical juncture of your presentation so work, re-work, rehearse and only then close it.
A pitch presentation is nothing without numbers. So, after sharing the plan of your startup, talk about numbers, both the current status i.e. overheads that your company incurs to how much money it requires to fulfil its plan. After all, the investor would want to know the money you need for growth and more importantly, to reach profitability. Also, highlight the timetable or projections post-funding that will enable you to achieve your goal. This slide should also cover other important points like how much are you willing to dilute and the time period before going for the next round of funding. Thus, know each number that is presented or not presented as this will be one of the most discussed slides.
6. Bring on the Competition
One of the biggest worries of an investor or a business partner would be the company’s competitors. bring them in the pitch deck by listing the names of direct and potential competitors yourself. This will show your understanding of the competitive landscape. It is also a good idea to know the recent activities, funding and investors (don’t highlight but be aware)of the core competitors. Also, have a point that explains plans to counter competition and showcasing your key differentiators from them. Thus, taking competition head-on in your pitch deck is only a smart move.
Two things that make a startup are its idea and its core team. Thus, the strength of the background and experience of your team plays a major role in convincing investors and partners about your feasibility in successfully executing your business plan. Hence, highlight the successes of your team and also, share their individual track records to help bolster your business’ own success. Showcase a solid team that can together handle the ups and downs of a startup.
8. End with a bang
So, if you have survived till here, pat your back on doing a great job. However, the job’s not done yet, it’s the time to close it with a bang. For that, recap all your important points in this one slide. From your highlights, milestones, money you want to raise to how you will use the money, have it all covered here. But remember, when presenting be passionate and enthusiastic about your business as this will help convince investors about your drive to fulfil this dream and not to get bogged down by any hurdles.
We conclude by saying that a pitch presentation is an important juncture for your startup so like all other important meetings, give it all you have too. Therefore, irrespective of how well you know your business or the pitch deck, practice, practice, practice. Memorise every word and present it with confidence, passion and excitement. It is also important to dress professionally, manage the allotted time to present well and have a solid pitch deck with visual references like graphics, charts and graphs especially, to present complex data in a simple manner.
So try these must-do’s while creating your pitch deck and tell us how it went!