After you come up with a business idea, one of the most difficult parts is to attract investors. The most common tool used for this is the pitch deck. Which essentially is a presentation to help you sell your idea.
Why is this so difficult?
Well, you need to convince some strangers that your idea is worth investing in. For this you need to prepare the actual pitch deck and then present it to investors until you find those who resonate with your idea.
Before getting to the pitching part you need to prepare the presentation. You can find on our blog section multiple articles that will help you create a structure of the pitch.
As an entrepreneur you should always be prepared to pitch your idea without hesitation or sounding like a memorized line. So we are going to go through some guidelines on how to pitch your deck.
Understand the context of your pitch
If you don’t want to work more times than necessary you should get to know the context of your pitch.
To whom are you pitching? Find a few things about the investors you are pitching to. In what they invested before, what is their expertise field or even what they like to do in their free time.
How is the pitch held? This is a more common question since the pandemic started. If before most of the pitches were held in person, now there are in online meetings.
What type of pitch are you preparing? Depending on the event your pitch is different. For demo days it should be short and to the point, for investors meetings it needs to contain detailed information.
Ask for feedback
Working on a pitch deck can take from 5 days to 5 weeks or even more. At some point you get so caught up in it that you lose your objectivity.
Have some fresh pair of eyes from colleagues or friends look at the pitch and give you feedback on how it is written, structured and how it looks.
Talk with the investors
Before hitting it off with an investor you will have multiple interactions, from which you can learn. Arrange your meetings in a way that lets the high value one among the last ones. This way you will have the chance to present to investors and get feedback from them.
Each investor can give you useful information on how to prepare your pitch deck, how to present it, what to ask for.
Cut the crap
You only have a few seconds in the beginning to get everyone’s attention, don’t waste them with pleasantries or introduction. Get them to remember your solution/startup and the name will come after it.
Most of the time you have only 5 minutes to pitch your deck so start strong with a compelling message. You can use here an elevator pitch, it’s short and tells the essence of your startup.
Tell a story
In presentations, stories are the most effective way of organizing information. A powerful form of communication, they translate ideas and move people to action.
Use a story that is relevant in this context and that has a point. ( the mission of your startup, the motivation on why you started ) This will engage the audience and will make them feel connected to you. Keep in mind that the same story will have different effects on different audiences.
Fo more insights of how to include stories when pitching you can read our article The power of Storytelling (https://visualhackers.com/blog/the-power-of-storytelling-in-presentations).
Find the balance between emotional and rational
Nobody can make a decision that is only emotional or only rational, neither the investors. Prepare your pitch in such a way to appeal to both sides. Talk about the business opportunity, the rationality behind it. At the same time, show them your passion and your motivation for doing this.
Know when to stop
Some founders are so excited about the business they started and it’s totally understandable. But in this process they put everything about the startup in the pitch.
Think about it like dating, you don’t tell all your stories on the first date, leave some surprises and mystery for the next encounter.
There aren’t many things to add here. You just need to practice your pitch at least 10 times before presenting it. Say it in front of the mirror, in front of your team or in front of your friends.
Make a list of possible questions and answer them
You already know that there will be questions after the pitch, it’s no surprise. Think ahead of all kinds of questions you could get, watch other presentations and see what questions were asked there.
Do you know the answer to them? Take each question you found and write down your answer to it. This way you will be prepared and will answer with confidence in front of possible investors.
You can go even further and prepare a few appendix slides for frequently asked question.
Think about the next step
You got to the pitching point, you are doing great and you get a positive response. What’s next?
Your plan isn’t to get here, this is just another step on the way. So when your an investor is ready to move forward so should you. Prepare for the next step as much as you prepared for the pitch.
In our experience with startups we recommend you to find a strong and supportive team and create the pitch deck together.
Are you ready to take your presentations to the next level?
Our team can help with everything from researching your project, writing the content, designing and building your slides, and even creating handouts.