A pitch deck is a presentation that aspiring entrepreneurs who seek funding put together to put forward their idea to potential investors.
The most important characteristics that a deck should have are as follows:
There are fundamentally two types of pitch decks — a presentation (slides) version and a more detailed version with text and visuals that are emailed to the investors. This post is intended to guide you in creating an effective presentation version of a pitch deck.
There are a few keys you should remember before we go ahead and discuss the slides that should be incorporated in a pitch deck.
- Always remember that your investors are busy people who will not be interested in a 2-hour “movie-esque” presentation. Keep in mind that they will get bored and reject you if you fail at getting their attention quickly enough.
- Do not brag about results and financials that are unrealistic. Your audience is some of the smartest decision makers in the world, and they will not fall for anything unrealistic. If anything, it will greatly reduce your chances of impressing them.
Now, let us discuss what slides you should add to your presentation.
Discuss the problem you are trying to solve with your idea. It is a great way of explaining the need you want to meet in the market. Make it seem important, but do not complicate it so much that investors have a hard time understanding it. Try to be precise with what you have identified as the issue. Have an exacting approach and target one issue, so that it shows your focus.
In the second slide provide a concise and scalable solution to the identified problem. Scalability is the ability to increase output if additional resources are secured. An investor is always keen to know if their resources will be put to effective and efficient use or not. Never say that you are the only one providing a solution to the problem, try to differentiate it from other factors such as lower cost or more advanced technology.
Identify your market, and select a niche that you will target. Make sure your identified market has exploitable potential that seems intriguing to investors. As a rule of thumb, $1B in a hyper-growth business is considered compelling.
Show your product, define how it works, and provide all other necessary details. Again, provide details, but don’t go overboard. Keep it to only the information needed to grasp the gist.
This is where you show investors the “dreamland” of month-over-month growth. If your business is at an early stage, it is better to skip this slide. It is always better to be realistic and honest in your pitch deck.
Tell your investors about the people working with you. Your management team is one of the defining factors in obtaining funding. If investors find your people capable, they might just agree to fund your idea. It is like putting your money on the horse that looks fit enough to win the race.
Provide an analysis of your competitors and how you aspire to beat them. Include your unique selling proposition (USP) and any other data you have acquired in your competitive market research.
Financials and Funding Requirements
Finally, provide them with the necessary financial statements, and give your projections as to what sort of money you can make for the investors if they agree to fund you. Again, be honest about what’s required to meet your projection goals.