If you’re trying to raise funds for your business, an impressive pitch deck is an essential part of your fundraising toolkit. A good pitch deck grabs potential investors’ attention and engages them in a conversation about your business, and at last mostly leads to an investment.
Remember that an investor’s first impression of your business will most likely be based on your pitch deck and pitch presentation. Since investments are rarely made after only one meeting, you want to pique people’s interest in your company. After hearing your pitch, you want investors to ask for more, not just show you the door.
Here in this article, we are going to discuss some best tips and practices to level up your pitch deck. But first, let’s have a close look at what a pitch deck is?
What is a Pitch Deck?
A pitch deck, also known as a start-up deck or a slide deck, is a brief yet insightful summary of your business. It should include the business plan’s main points, the goods and services you provide, high-level financial forecasts, and funding requirements. Your pitch deck should be able to stand alone as a visual document, but it will mostly be used to tell your company’s story.
Pitch Deck’s Real-Life Best Practices to use in 2021
1. Keep It Simple
Some of the most successful pitch decks deliver details in a way that is easily digestible and understandable. You don’t want to bore your audience, but you also don’t want them to be left in the dark about what your product or service is trying to accomplish. Airbnb’s pitch deck is widely regarded as one of the best and has helped the company raise more than $112 million.
This deck is a perfect example of simplicity. Each slide is simple and straightforward, conveying the details quickly and effectively. They often avoid the drawbacks of relying solely on a text by interspersing photos and maps that highlight their points in the same way.
2. Show Your Ambition
Showcase your idea if you feel it has the potential to be massive. They show expected growth in large numbers in the WeWork Pitch Deck Series D. With the right amount of funding, WeWork knew they had a solid business plan that would expand. They didn’t take any shortcuts, instead of relying on visual maps to convey massive forecasts and plans.
They were able to use the logos of both of these organizations in their pitch deck to demonstrate who they were already associated with by offering big-name services to their members via an affiliate scheme. Not only did this pitch deck help them raise a lot of money, but it also helped them become one of the largest coworking space providers in the world.
3. Be the Change Template
Uber used to be known as UberCab when it first began. The concept behind the company seemed like something out of a fairy tale: cabs that would arrive in minutes without you having to call or wait on the curb. Their original pitch deck is a perfect example of believing in a product, even though their initial concepts did not quite reflect how Uber is today.
The actual slides rely heavily on bullet points to convey the message, but they are effective because they are straightforward and concise. Instead of lengthy descriptions, the bullet points are more like matter-of-fact sentences.
4. Show Your Worth
When Buzzfeed was small, with just five people working in a cramped office in Chinatown, they knew they needed to stand out. So, rather than just being a part of the pack, they formed their own. On their pitch deck, they perfectly visualized this concept. Instead of making content and advertisement as two separate bodies, as was the standard, Buzzfeed proposed advertising as content.
What set them apart from other journalistic websites was their concept of using user-generated content, computer algorithms, and advertisers. They pitched their platform to investors so that their ads could be used as content.
5. Stay on Brand
The typical presentation has a light background with dark-colored material, but the Launchrock pitch deck went the other way. The slides have a black backdrop, with white text and red and blue gradient buttons as material.
The Launchrock brand, like their pitch deck, is plain, bold, and to the point. Each slide contains only the most basic material, but it is accurate. In a basic storytelling style, the data flows from one slide to the next. To top it off, they convey the message through social evidence and a sense of community. Although the flowchart on slide 11 is devoid of text, it effectively conveys the concept behind their product.
6. Keep it Real
Foursquare used to be massive, but with so many location-based apps now, it’s easy to forget about it. Yes, Foursquare is still around, and it’s a lot more than it was in the beginning. This pitch deck has a lot of text in it, which isn’t necessarily a good thing. However, there are mobile device mockups with actual screenshots of the app in action on these slides with long bullet points.
This, combined with the fact that the text is inspiring, imaginative, and well-organized, somehow makes it work. This pitch deck’s popularity is due in large part to the fact that it demonstrates how the software helps both businesses and consumers.
What to include in your pitch deck?
The value proposition and the vision
This is a one-sentence summary of your company and the value you give to your clients. Keep it brief and straightforward. Imagine this slide as a quick tweet—describe your company in 140 characters or less and in a language that your parents will understand.
The issue at hand
You’re going to have a long uphill climb for your company if you’re not solving any problem in the world. Use this slide to discuss the problem you’re trying to solve and who the problem belongs to. You will discuss the new business solutions, but don’t waste too much time on the competitive environment on this slide—you’ll have another opportunity to do so later.
Business opportunity and target market
This slide can be used to elaborate on who your ideal customer is and how many there are. What is the overall market size, and how is your business positioned in it? Investors may like to know how much consumers or companies are actually spending in the market to get a sense of the overall market value if the data is available. This is where you describe the complexity and size of the problem you’re attempting to solve.
Finally, you will have the opportunity to describe your product or service. Describe how consumers interact with your product and how it solves the issues you described on slide two. You will be tempted to move this slide closer to the start of your pitch deck, but resist the urge. This is a classic example of storytelling, in which you build up the dilemma and explain how terrible it is for a large number of people. Now your product or service is stepping in to help solve the problem.
Data and numbers
Because VCs are all about these two things. They use the figures to analyze whether your upcoming venture will be a profitable investment for them. However, you don’t want to showcase a bunch of bullets and numbers – you want to use the figures to convey a story. Have an expert check over your financial figures and then use certain commentary to elucidate and contextualize that data, keeping investors engaged from start to finish.
Does it make sense to pack an emotional punch in a pitch deck? It sure does. Investors, after all, need to see your confidence in your SaaS product. If you’re just like “meh,” then your investors aren’t going to be that excited about it. So, how do you infuse emotion into your pitch deck? Start by putting your VC’s in your target audiences’ shoes. Leverage graphics and storytelling to form that emotional bond. VCs should be able to visualize your customer’s journey, as well as feel the satisfaction they’ll get when your SaaS product comes to the rescue.
You can also create a sense of urgency by thinking of ways to evoke fear of missing out (FOMO). For example, use a focus group to get feedback. If it’s positive, use that to convey that investing immediately is better – or someone else may jump ship.
Look no further if you want to build an incredible pitch deck that shows your business plan and appeals to the right investors. Remember, the most important thing is to remain true to your message, your brand, be truthful, and produce results. Hopefully, this article will help you in creating a perfect pitch deck for your business and you will get a perfect pitch deck for the future.