Finally … a PROVEN blueprint that shows you exactly how to transform your startup pitch deck from ordinary to an investor magnet

Share with your friends

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on whatsapp
Share on print

What you will get

In this case study, we will show you the blueprint for putting together a strong startup pitch:

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
  • The Winning Structure: we will showcase the framework/roadmap for constructing a great investor pitch, starting at the highest level, with a good framing of the story to sell to investors, details with what to write in each slide that is effectively communicating the opportunity your company presents.
  • Pitch Deck Examples: a teardown of the 30+ Legendary Startup decks (e.g. Airbnb, Uber, LinkedIn) with lots of great examples of tools of persuasion. We will specifically explore how you can use them in different parts of your deck to elevate your pitch from good to great!
  • How to tell a STORY of your business throughout the decks: Humans are virtually incapable of stopping themselves from listening to or reading a compelling story. When used strategically in your pitch deck, stories can help you keep the readers’ attention just long enough for you to make your case and convince them to give you the ticket to next step.
  • How to construct a crisp pitch deck: you will learn how to not overcrowd each slide. Each slide touches on one specific topic with just the right amount of information.
  • Templates for download: Did you know that having the right pitch deck design can drastically impact your chances of raising funding? We took care the design for you, make sure it is professional done. Save your time in designing a strong visual.

Table of content

introduction

  • Investor short attention span 
  • Roadmap of getting funded
  • What people say?
  • The Basics 
 
 
 
 

6 steps approach

  • Step 1 Know your audience (Exercise 1)
  • Step 2 Write your core message (Exercise 2)
  • Step 3 Structure your message 
  • Step 4 Craft your content
  • Step 5 Design the slides
  • Step 6 Get feedback (Exercise 3)

Winning Pitch Deck

The Structure |  Cover | Problem | Solution | Market Size | Product | Business Model | Go to Market | Competition | Traction | Team | Call for Action | End

Each section: Slide Objectives, Things to Cover, Best Practice from 30+ Legendary Pitch

Toolkits

To further save 30+ days of your time in researching + designing your deck, we have developed a toolkit to ease your pain in developing your deck, covering 

Both the Content (Step-by-Step Guidelines, Worksheet) and Design (Templates, Icons).

Introduction

Giving a best pitch is essential to the survival of any startup

For startup, funding is the key stepping stone towards success.

However, raising funds from external sources require a lot of homework. Even though there are a lot of investors out there seeking promising companies, studies show that average VC firm is exposed to at least 5,000 pitches per year, and the average time they spend on each deck is only around 3 minutes 44 seconds. If you have landed an investor meetings, even though most investor meetings last an hour, time is often eaten up by technical difficulties, late arrivals, and questions and discussion. You should keep your presentation at the 20-minute mark.

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck

But worst of all, at the end they invest in only 3 companies!

Why are so few companies funded? The primary reason is that VCs have limits on the time and money they can invest in startups. As a result, when you stand in front of investors, you are not just pitching your startup; you are competing again hundred if not thousands of other startups for one of those few coveted spots.

So… how do you get funded? It all starts with creating an appealing pitch deck.

The general process in getting funded

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck

Trudging from one investor to the next to convince them to invest in your business seems like a hopelessly inefficient process. But, good news: It doesn’t have to be!

If you have a compelling pitch deck that clearly shows you are worth the investment, you will be able to spend less time chasing down investors and more time actually work on building your business.

BUT … that is easier said than done

Common challenges from founders:

What people say?

I found it very hard presenting my business and idea to a group of strangers who have never heard of my company. I feel that I am already fighting an uphill battle from the start.
Patrick Wong
STEAM EDUCATION, Hong Kong
There are lots of websites saying it is crucial to do storytelling in your pitch, but I am struggle in how to write it in a compelling way
Brandon Goodman
Retail, United Kingdom
There are so many things I want to talk about, but not enough time! It is daunting to explain EVERYTHING in a pitch deck. Super difficult to summarize everything in my mind into a few sentences in a slide. I often feel the need to add more
John Backer
App Development, Australia
Juggling the time to raise a family, run the business, and find investors for funding is hard enough. It is dreadful to find another hours/weeks digging through research, websites and books, learning and writing a winning pitch deck
Jennifer Hextall
Golf GPS App, United Kingdom
We know writing a best pitch is essential in helping us to raise fund. But in the market, there are only 3 types of options available - an expensive software that help you designing a professional slide (but I still need to write the content), spent a fortune in hiring a professional to write a copy, or just a bunch of templates of infographics that not really helping me to write my deck
Christophe G
Hospitality Industry, France
I feel defeated running from one pitch meeting to another and yet without any result. It is a very exhausting process.
Rahul G
Packaging & Sustainability, India

The good news is it is still doable with the PROVEN 6-Steps to write your deck

Before we deep dive into the steps, first, let’s layout the basics and clarify some of the misconceptions about pitch deck:

What is a pitch deck?

A pitch deck is a brief presentation you create to raise venture capital from potential investors for your business. It outlines everything from why your business exists, your business model, progress or milestones, the team behind your business as well as a conclusion in the form of a call to action.

They are an essential piece of content for any startup, who will usually use the pitch deck for email screening, face-to-face or online meetings with potential investors, customers/clients, partners, and co-founders.

Goals for your pitch deck

This may sound counter-intuitive, but for startup, the goal of your pitch deck is NOT to raise money. The real goal of your pitch deck is to get to the next steps/meeting. Your pitch deck and pitch presentation are probably some of the first things that an investor is seeing to learn more about your company.

A pitch deck is used to:

  • Represent your idea to the external audience
  • Make a great first impression by showcasing your idea, structure, and metrics.
  • If you are raising money for your business, having an impressive pitch deck is a key component in your fundraising toolkit. Investments rarely are made after just one meeting, your goal is to spark interest in your company. A great pitch deck gets potential investors excited about your idea and engages them in a conversation about your business. You want investors to ask for more after they hear your pitch and not just show you to the door.
  • Persuade and convert. That means it should be impressively designed, easy to digest, and — most importantly — carefully tailored to the specific person or audience you are targeting at.

6 steps approach

Step 1: Know your audience

Understanding who you are pitching to is absolutely key in creating a killer pitch deck. 

For example, when you are trying to teach “How to create a Powerpoint slide” to a 25-year old educated friend, the message/story you tell will probably be different than the one you will give to your grandma, right?  

The same applies to a pitch deck.  The audience will be the filter of what you present in your deck.  Know your audience, and you are off to a winning start.

Remember audiences listen in order to gain value f0r themselves. Pitches aren’t about you or your startup. The goal of your pitch is to communicate what’s in it for the audience.

Exercise 1:

To help you understand more about your audience, the worksheet “the 7 critical questions to ask about your audience” is created.

The answers are obviously very different if you are talking about an investor you have met, or someone in a general audience hearing your pitch for the first time. Pitching your business without the right context makes you dis-engage with the audience at the head start.

Once you understand your audience and their pain point, you will be able to talk with confidence about how you can solve them. Also, being able to authentically empathize with the problems the members of your audience are facing will make you more credible in their eyes.

Even though you are pitching the same product or service, you can’t just memorize a few lines and go from there. Each opportunity is different. You need to tailor how you pitch to the person you’re pitching to, the social situation, and his or her level of understanding and interest.

Frame your pitch to fit investor needs`

Reference: 7 Critical Questions to ask about your audience before you start writing your presentation slide

Step 2: Write your core message

If there was one thing you wanted your audience to remember a few weeks after your presentation, what would it be?

This article focuses on pitching to win an investment, however, not all investor pitches are geared towards funding. As an entrepreneur, you may be trying to recruit a new adviser or gain additional contacts. If your goal is not funding, consider what is important for your audience to know so they will take the desired action. Many entrepreneurs, unclear on how to communicate value, share everything about their startup and fail to communicate anything. Entrepreneurs know their company better than anyone else. This gives a false confidence that they can walk into a meeting and provide all the information an investor needs to make a decision. The problem is that investors don’t need a lot of information; they only need the right details to understand the investment opportunity. If an entrepreneur unloads too much information, the important details get lost.

That is why it is important to lay out your core message before you start to write your pitch.

How to keep your message sweet and concise?

It starts from the planning stage!

When you go through the exercise 2, you must decide what content translates clearly into investor value and what content can be eliminated from your pitch. Superfluous details waste investor time and obscure what investors really need to hear in order to make a decision. For example, if you cannot translate product features or company details into signposts that help investors recognize financial opportunity, consider leaving those details out.

When you share details, emphasize ONLY the most important and significant facts. This applies to all the sections of the presentation. Share only the most impressive and relevant elements during your pitch, and remove the lesser details to keep your pitch concise.

When you pitch short and sweet, investors connect to the information they need to determine whether you are investment-worthy. That’s all that matters. Conversely, when you add too much detail, in effect dumping everything you know into your pitch, you diminish the impact of your core message. Worse, if you run out of time, you run the risk of never presenting the most valuable information. Amplify your core message and make it crystal clear by reducing the ambient noise.

Exercise 2:

  1. Write down your core message in one sentence with specifics 
  1. Take a moment to consider your startup. When you step in front of investors, what are the three most important points, three key take-away messages that investors must know in order to recognize the value of your company? What are the three things you really want them to remember about your business?

For example:

  • Is it about the team (you have a star team)?
  • Is it about the traction you have achieved?
  • Is it about the problem you are going to solve for the target market?
  • Is it about the special features and benefits generated from the product that is very unique in the market?
  1. To illustrate these key messages, make a short list of data and examples that support each one (but make sure that the messages are clear even without support).

Reference: How to define a clear core message before you start writing your presentation slides?

Step 3: Structure your message logically

Unlike other presentation, usually start up deck has a rough standard structure. But the challenge is, everyone has their own opinion on what the total number of slides should be and what to be included in a pitch deck. Some, like Guy Kawasaki, argue that a pitch deck should be 10 slides MAXIMUM, while others put this figure at around 20 slides.

We will not re-invent the wheel here. We researched the popular structure that set in the market, created the framework, tested it in various scenarios, and there you are – the most essential & effective 12 slides tell your story in a clear, memorable, persuasive way

More Reading: How to structure your message logically before you start writing your presentation slides

Step 4: Craft your content

Now you have the profile of your audience, your core message, the structure of the pitch, it is time to write your content!

Here are some basic principles you need to take note of:

Principle 1: Turn your pitch into a story

Storytelling is the best way to attract the audience. It is a scientifically proven way to capture listener’s attention and hold them to remember what you say. Moreover, with storytelling, you can make your pitch unforgettable. Many pitches fall flat because they are not framed as a story. You need to play to both the head and the heart – investors make decisions with both. Those difficult to understand valuations, spreadsheets and numbers do not attract investors anymore. When you are pitching your audience via your story, the investors get all the information that they want. What information you can offer them about your startup with your story, no sheet can convey the same. Everyone is attracted and loves a pitch that has a story involved; even the most data-driven investors. So, tell your story in a right way, gain the attention of the audience and the funding will follow.

Principle 2: Keep it simple and captivating

Reference things people know and understand. Your pitch is not a place for an in-depth technical explanation or for you to show how smart you are. Pitch your company as if you would a 6 year old. Keep it high-level, easy to follow and understandable in a way that is not going to make people think or question you. Too many details make it hard to follow. The story gets lost in all the noise.

As a general rule, try to write one idea/message per slide. Each slide should tell a distinct part of the story. If left behind, each and every PowerPoint slide should be able to stand alone with its action title and contents. Come up with a title that creates interest in the viewer. Instead of a one word slide, the headline of each slide should, in sequence, tell the story (narrative) of your company. It should be a concise and complete sentence, with clear and specific message.

Make sure to avoid jargon and buzz words too, even if you think your audience knows or should know it. You don’t want to come across as too cocky or seem smarter than your audience. You want them to feel they can relate to you.

If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough

Step 5: Design the slides

Visualize key points: A document full of bullet points is not going to excite anyone. Diagrams, images and charts will communicate your key ideas in a clear and more engaging way.

Remember people can either read or listen. But they can rarely do both at the same time. Whatever you write on the slide, it pulls attention away from what you are saying. Use big bold fonts and bold colors. You could very well do with an image and the large number, rather than whole paragraph on the slide.

Branding:  Your branding should be visible on every single slide and people are quite good at remembering color palettes

More ideas in “10 Rules of Design Dos & Don’ts”

Step 6: Get Feeback

Test your pitch

Before you do anything else, test your story with a friend or mentor.

Exercise 3:

Ask them the following questions:

  1. What do you remember most from the pitch?
  2. Describe the business back to me (to test your understanding).
  3. What’s your biggest concern about the business?
  4. What most excites you about the business?

Are these the answers you wanted to hear? If not, review your storyboard until you land the message you want to deliver. 

If you hear the same questions again and again, perhaps it’s time to add a slide or an explanation to your deck.

Keep track of how people respond to your pitch. Make note of their reaction / facial expression while they listen to your story. Pay attention to their “aha” moment, then you know that is the part of your pitch that works!

Winning Pitch deck

The Structure

We will not re-invent the wheel here. We researched the popular structure that set in the market, created the framework, tested it in various scenarios, and there you are – the most essential & effective 12 slides tell your story in a clear, memorable, persuasive way

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck

A normal human being cannot comprehend more than ten concepts in a meeting—and venture capitalists are very normal,” According to Guy Kawasaki, a famous investor, advisor, and author, the optimal length for a pitch deck is 10 slides

Sequence

There is no specific order of the slides. The sequence highlighted above is just a recommendation. Every situation is different depends on what is the purpose of your presentation, your core message and the story you want to tell. Go back to your notes in Step 2. Make sure the deck flows. As a general rule, you should put your company’s strengths/key messages you want to get it through higher up the order. For example, if you have a STAR team, you may want to have the team slide just after the title page. Or if you have a great traction, lead with it!

SLIDE 1

COVER

Slide Objectives

This is the first impression of you and your company. Prepare to make a great first impressions. The first 2-3 minutes are the most important. The two most important slides in the deck are the first two slides. If they are sloppily designed, boring, or unclear, an investor will spend all of 10 seconds looking through the remaining 10 slides.

Therefore, the cover slide should be able to grab the audience’s attention, sets the tone for the pitch

This slide should be able to convey “Who you are, what you do, and what you want to do.”

Things to cover

  • Tagline: Define the company / business in a single declarative sentence
  • Business Name & Logo
  • (Optional) one Hero image of your startup: pick a product image that really reflects and explains what your company does. Hero images often include a person actively using your product/service. Make sure to use images that directly relate to or complement what your company does, such as showing someone actively using your product or service, or the situation in which someone would use it. The goal is to bring the audience “into your world”.
  • Put Investor Briefing” or “Investor Presentation” somewhere on the front cover
  • Date: help you keep track of different versions.
  • Other potential additions: Logos of accelerator, awards, publications featuring company

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Cadee startup pitch deck
Cadee Pitch Deck: Statement that give insight about the business
Dropbox startup pitch deck
Dropbox Pitch Deck: Catchy Headlines that provoke thinking
Hubbub startup pitch deck
Hubbub Pitch Deck: Highlight the change you bring in the world

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 2

Problem

Slide Objectives

Here’s where the storytelling starts. You should state the problem your target audience faces. The objective is to make it clear to your investors that you have found a clear opportunity and you are ready to capitalize on it.

Not all companies solve new problems; some focus on solving age-old problems in a way that changes customer preference. This is especially true in apparel, restaurants, and many consumer product goods. If you have one of these ventures, you should focus more on the opportunity rather than the problem you are trying to solve.

Your key focus in this slide is to get your audience interested in your company. Dig out the audience info you researched in step 1. Try to get emotionally engaged with the audience. If your investor can understand the problem/opportunity you are describing, they will empathize with your product earlier on. Creating empathy with your investors is critical at this point. It could be achieved by:

  • If the problem you are trying to solve can be applied to them, take advantage of that!
  • Something that link to their professional expertise that they understand (e.g. doctors with healthcare)
  • Talk up the most interesting facts about your business, as well as any huge milestones you may have hit which will give a clear sense of ROI down the line for your audience
  • Confidently and empathetically display how well you understand the complex market dynamics surround the problem. Show that you truly understand the customer pain points from within this market

If the problem is not clear, then investor is not interested. A problem give a product the context why does it exist

Things to cover

Make clear what the problem is and provide answers to the following question:

  • What is the problem? Describe the pain of the customer. Outline how the customer addresses the issue today
  • How big is the problem? Provide a very large and specific number of people who feel the pain of this problem every day. Research the web for credible sources of data (PwC, Forrester, WSJ, etc.)
  • Why does the problem exist?
  • How is the problem currently being addressed? Anyone in other parts of the world facing this? Showcase how other countries are tackling it.
  • Will people pay to have this problem fixed?

These questions are the first points that investors want to know the answers to

 

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Puptimize startup pitch deck
Puptimize Pitch Deck: Validate your statement by using charts, graphs and numbers.
Dropbox startup pitch deck
Dropbox Pitch Deck: Simple as it can be! An image and 4 words ‘Storage is a mess.’
Smarthost startup pitch deck
SmartHost Pitch Deck: Summarize the problem in 3 simple short sentences/points

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 3

Solution

Slide Objectives

With the problem established, now it is time to show them your magic, your one-of-a-kind solution to the problem. You want the investors to marvel at it. Use cases to demonstrate how your customer will be delighted with your solution.

When thinking about products, you AL WAYS start with your customers’ problems in mind. Focus on solving their burning problems with a mouthwatering table of contents. Pick a great name that’s clear and straightforward

Things to cover

  • Explain simply how your product does
  • Show where your product physically sits
  • Describe how your solution makes your customers’ life better and does it better than others
  • Why now? As you may know timing is everything in business and being at the right time in history is what really matters. Being too early or too late to market can be the main cause of failure for startups.
    • Set-up the historical evolution of your category
    • Define recent trends that make your solution possible

What should you demonstrate?

  • Surprise. Your solution should feel like nothing your audience has ever seen.
  • Repeatable and scale-able. It should be evident in your solution that what you are building can be replicated across the market. Scalability is the capability of a system to increase its total output under an increased load when resources are added. This is what investors essentially want to see. A company in which they can invest in order to have the wheel turn much faster.
  • Solving something painful. It should be clear that your solution relieves a persistent pain point the customer currently experiences.
  • Easy to understand. No jargon! The solution needs to be concise and very clear. Ensure the audience will clearly understand and will buy your solution.

Most entrepreneurs are very focused on their product when instead they need to be focused on their customers and the problems those customers face. Try and keep your pitch deck focused with this format and you’ll tell a better story.

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Brightnest deck
Brightnest Pitch Deck: Use infographics to illustrate the features and benefits
How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Dwolla Pitch Deck: Use process map to show how your solution works
Heroku startup pitch deck
Heroku Pitch Deck: Summarize the solution in 3 key points

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 4

Market Size

Slide Objectives

Show that there’s a market. You may have a great idea to solve a real problem, but unless enough people have the problem, it’s going to be hard for investors to consider your pitch. It is about answering a few key questions on who your customers are, how they segmented, and how big the opportunity they represent is. But be prepared to answer questions about the cost of acquiring these customers. Not knowing this information is a red flag to investors. If you already have sales, you can discuss your growth and forecast future revenue.

If you can demonstrate that there is a reasonably sized market and proven demand for your solution, investors will be lining up to give you money.

 A word of warning, it’s tempting to try and define your market to be as large as possible. Instead, investors will want to see that you have a very specific and reachable market. The more specific you are, the more realistic your pitch will be.

 

Things to cover

There are two approaches. Either a bottom up or top down market approach.

A. A top down analysis is calculated by determining the total market, then estimating your share of the market.

  1. Total addressable market: How big can this get?

The total available or addressable market (TAM) is about figuring out how many people could possibly buy your product, how much revenue you could make from each one, and the product of those two numbers. (everyone you wish to reach your product)

  1. Served addressable market: Who do you plan to serve – and how big an opportunity is that?

The served addressable market (SAM) is a smaller collection of potential customers who you are actively choosing to serve.

Your segmented addressable market or served available market (the portion of TAM you will target)

  1. Share of available market: Who are you selling to first?

Your share of the market (SOM) is the first market you will sell to. To find these customers, you have to find special characteristics that only your customers have.

Your share of the market you will realistically reach – particularly in the first few years of your business 

B. The bottom up analysis is calculated by estimating potential sales to determine a total sales figure. A bottom up study evaluates where product can be sold, the sales of comparable products and the slice of current sales you can carve out.

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Facebook Pitch Deck: Identify / profile the customer you cater to
Standard Treasury startup pitch deck
Standard Treasury Pitch Deck: Determine the total market, then estimate your target segment
LastBite startup pitch deck
Lastbite Pitch Deck: Bottom up approach to estimate potential sales figure

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 5

Product

Slide Objectives

Explain exactly what your product or service is.

You don’t have a lot of space in a pitch presentation to go into detail about your company and your product, so keep the description of your product/service simple and straightforward. Getting a second meeting with investors is your goal, so it’s fine if not all questions are answered on the slide that describes what your company does.

Be careful not to drone endlessly on about your product. Honestly, investors don’t really care about your product as much as they care about the money that your product will make. The sooner you get to the details about the money, the better.

Things to cover

  • Showcase your product and its various highlights. Make sure you explain the key benefits of the product (instead of features).
  • Mention three or four core functions of your product and how they address the problems you just talked about
  • Highlight what is unique in your product/service, How do you help your customers get results differently to your competition, or alternatives?
  • Include any case studies to show that your product has worked for existing customers. Ideally includes solicit testimonials from current users or investors
  • If help showcase the uniqueness of the product, you can also include workflow and your product development roadmap

 

Remember … Avoid the curse of the demo

Nothing is worse than having your demo fail on you during a pitch. This happens more than you can imagine. Stick with screenshots and photos of your product/service. Avoid video (it will fail) and anything that requires an Internet connection. If you have to do a technical demo, then make sure you have screenshots or photos as a back-up.

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

LastBite startup pitch deck
Lastbite Pitch Deck: Highlight the 3 core functions with screenshot
Shift startup pitch deck
Shift Pitch Deck: Showcase your product in a form of step by step diagram
How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Canva Pitch Deck: Explain the product benefits and features by Use Cases

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 6

Business Model

Slide Objectives

No investors will give you money because they like you or your product. They will do because they believe your team, led by your vision, can grasp this market opportunity, create a sizable company, and give them a sizable return on their investment.

Therefore what you need to answer in this slide is: How are you going to make money? Tell them how you plan on generating revenue. Show a list of the various revenue streams for your model and the timeline for each of them. How will you price your product and what does your competition charge? You should also discuss the lifetime value of your customer and how you will keep them engaged.

Things to cover

This is a crucial section of the pitch deck as this is where you explain the economics of your business structure to the investors. Describe how the company will generate revenue to sustain itself and to grow. Examples include:

  • Operating cost structure
  • Revenue model: revenue streams
  • Pricing Model:
    • Freemium model
    • Subscription
    • One-time pay models
    • Pay as you go model
  • Who are the segments you are targeting and what is their pricing profile (high end, discount driven, value driven or B2B/B2C/B2B2C )
  • Sales and Distribution channels
  • Key partners & activities
  • Gross margins etc.

 

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Cadee startup pitch deck
Cadee Pitch Deck: Infographics to explain what you business model is
DineServe startup pitch deck
DinServe Pitch Deck: Flow chart to show your revenue streams in the process
Doggyhut startup pitch deck
Doggyhut Pitch Deck: Summarize the revenue model in one sentence

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 7

Go to Market

Slide Objectives

Having a great idea is one thing, but having a clear plan for getting your business off the ground is something totally different.

The idea on this slide is to show that there is a plan – Solid ideas to grow the company at a set timeline, with each milestone clearly depicted.

Nobody is going to invest in some vague semblance of a plan. They will want to know exactly how you are planning to get your business off the ground.

The focus of this slide is proving that you can figure out ways to grow to your business both with the large pool of ideas and the ability to execute them.

Things to cover

How are you planning on getting customers’ attention and what will your sales process look like? Use this slide to outline your marketing and sales plan. Detail the key tactics that you intend to use to get your product in front of prospective customers.

It includes:

  • Explain who your target audience is: Use demographic and psychographic features to pinpoint your customers. Show investors a picture of a customer along with relevant data points.
  • Explain how you intend to acquire these customers. Business success comes down to marketing. If you have a marketing idea, method, technique or process, this is your chance to showcase it. Contrary to pithy maxims, great products don’t sell themselves. You sell the product. To be persuaded, investors have to see an airtight strategy for getting the product to market.
  • Unique marketing and sales channels. If your marketing and sales process is different than your competitors, it’s important to highlight that here.
  • Explain ways to accelerate the sales. If you have mentioned about the sales in your pitch, the next challenge is to get ready for questions such as “how are you going to maintain the sales”, among many others. When an investor puts their money into your business, it means that your business will grow. Thus, your pitch should state how the company will accelerate the sales when the company expands.

Finding and winning customers can sometimes be the biggest challenge for a startup, so it’s important to show that you have a solid grasp of how you will reach your target market and what sales channels you plan on using.

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Bidzuku startup pitch deck
Bidzuku Pitch Deck: Show the Marketing + Distribution plan
AIrbnb Startup Pitch Deck
Airbnb Pitch Deck: Highlight 3 marketing and sales channels
Canva startup pitch deck
Canva Pitch Deck: Highlight the market segment(s) you are targeting

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 8

Competition

Slide Objectives

This is a section where you convince your investors that you have done your homework and you know about your competitors. List your competitors and include their positioning, strengths, weaknesses and opportunities which they have left for you to tap into.

The key focus is to show what differentiates you from competitors and what advantage you have over them. Partnerships, technology expertise, intellectual property, simplicity, business processes, and networks can all be significant advantages.  Tell investors about the things that only you can bring to the table, why customers will choose you instead of one of the other players on the market – that is what will make you stand out from the crowd

 

Things to cover

  • Competitor Landscape. Who are your primary and secondary competitors and in what ways do they compete from your customers? You should know your competitors and their unique advantages and disadvantages.
  • Understanding of potential threats. Are they any unknown or potential competitors that would have a better advantage than you if they entered in market? Entrepreneurs caught up in the brilliance of their own ideas might miss major warning signs. An investor wants to know whether or not you are underestimating the threat of competition.
  • Is it clear that you are different enough to compete?
  • Unique advantage. Where are you when compare yourself with the competition? Explain your value proposition and your Unique Selling Point. How will you disrupt the current competitive landscape? Give a reason to the investors to buy your proposal.

Every business has competition, so don’t make the mistake of saying that you don’t have any. Your presentation should show who your competition is and why your product is better. Acknowledging competition tells investors you are on top of the market and that you have strategies in mind to beat the other options out there.

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Flowtab startup pitch deck
Flowtab Pitch Deck: Show your competitive edges in the form of feature table
LastBite startup pitch deck
Lastbite Pitch Deck: List + Group all players in the industry and highlight your advantages
Twine startup pitch deck
Twine Pitch Deck: Create a map of the competitive landscape in a 2x2 matrix.

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 9

Traction

Slide Objectives

Traction is a proof that you have a good idea. Whether you have early customers, or other evidence that your target market is interested in your solution, make sure to share that evidence. It can be in the form of a timeline of milestones you’ve achieved, or a list of evidence / financial projections that your company is likely to be successful. Financial projections are a shot in the dark when you are a startup. No one knows where you will be in 3 to 5 years from today. However, this slide serves as a roadmap and gives a good idea to the investor on where things are headed. It also shows how grounded you and your management team are.

This slide is more important than entrepreneurs normally think. When you first connect with an institutional investor they will ask for your pitch deck. 3 months later they will ask you on your next meeting where things are at and then they will make a decision. With this in mind, it is always a good idea to be more on the conservative side and to over deliver. Worst thing that can happen is for you to completely miss the mark and under promise. Additionally you will need to have ready your financials in Excel format as investors may want to see that after reviewing your pitch deck. For that reason you do not need to go into much detail on the deck. All you need is to provide a summary.

Things to cover

Pick your best metric and show it in the best way possible. Part of this step is just showing that you know how to articulate what your goals are and that you can show progress toward them. It could be in the form of:

  •  Sales: If you already have sales or early adopters using your product, talk about that here. Investors want to see that you have proven some aspect of your business model as that reduces risk, so any proof you have that validates that your solution works to solve the problem you have identified is extremely powerful
  • Other metrics: Apart from sales, show traction wherever you can. Highlight repeat behavior as much as possible such as number of engagements, transactions, site traffic/downloads, churn rate, growth in transactions etc. Brag about your users’ growth. For a seed stage startup, 100% M-O-M growth is what the angels want to see.
  • Forecast/Projection: Even though any forecast is just educated guess, potential investors will want to understand your thinking on how the business will grow over time and what it’s going to take to be profitable. you should probably be prepared to answer in-depth questions about what your revenue will look like 1, 3, and 5 years down the line; the total number of clients per year and your target market penetration; and total revenue, total expenses. Also includes your burn rate, break-even point and how many users you need to make a profit. Remember be realistic in your calculation.
  • Milestones: VCs want to invest in companies with traction, but startups often don’t have very much traction to report. A good workaround for this is to present the milestones that you have already reached and the opportunity with a clear route to market strategy. This shows investors that you understand how to execute. What major goals have you achieved so far and what are the major next steps you plan on taking? For example, you acquired 1,000 customers by X months, or you have a partnership with company Y. A product or company roadmap that outlines key milestones is helpful here.
  • Emotional validation: Include partnerships/customers’ testimonials, reviews, or other press mentions / PR social proof

 

Blow the investors away with some impressive stats

 

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

Heroku startup pitch deck
Heroku Pitch Deck: If you already have sales using your product, talk about that here!
The Daily Hundred Startup pitch deck
The Daily Hundred Pitch Deck: Apart from sales, show traction wherever you can
How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Castle Pitch Deck: Product or company roadmap that outlines key milestones

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 10

Team

Slide Objectives

Explain why you/your team are the right people. Investors know that successful companies start with high caliber teams of ambitious individuals. You and your team are what investors are really investing in. There are always great ideas, but only so many people who are qualified to turn those ideas into successful businesses.

Things to cover

This slide should be simple. Demonstrate the unique skill that each team member will bring to the table and how your team will be able to work together to push your company to success.

Show all the skills your team has and how they complement one another

Even if you don’t have a complete team yet, identify the key positions that you still need to fill and why those positions are critical to company growth.

If applicable, emphasize that your team has worked together in the past or for a long period of time. It shows you can and like to work together. If you have any important advisors, list them, but make sure they know you are using their name.

Demonstrate:

  • Expertise, Passion, Relevant experience
  • Is the current team sufficient to achieve the mission? If not includes the key hires that need to be made
  • Mention succinctly the role and the USP each member bring to the table

 

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Flowtab Pitch Deck: Mention succinctly the role and the USP each member bring to the table
Doggyhut startup pitch deck
Doggyhut Pitch Deck: Demonstrate Expertise, Passion, Relevant experience
Panjo Startup Pitch DEck
Panjo Pitch Deck: Include key hires that need to be made if current team is not sufficient

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 11

Call to Actions

Slide Objectives

Lastly, you need to ask for what you are after.

Make your ask incredibly clear

Is it an investment? A partnership? If so, what are the details of that? So many people lose momentum by being afraid to make the ask. Be clear and to the point.

 

Things to cover

If you are pitching to raise capital, make sure you includes the following fundraising information:

  •  How much money you are raising
  • Use of Fund. What are you going to do with the money? Spend it on rent or buy up customers and squeeze the competition out of business? Have a spending plan. Investors don’t just write checks because you have a great pitch deck. They are going to want to know how you plan on spending their money to build your business.
  • History of fundraising (if applicable). If you have already raised money, you will want to talk about how much, who invested and what you did with it. I find investors like to follow others. It shows someone else believes in you and has put their money on the line. It serves as social proof. In the event you have high profile investors that have invested in your company, ask them for permission to include them or their logo in this slide. This will definitely help with increasing the trust with prospects. Moreover, it is great to see on this slide the use of proceeds. Highlighting what you have accomplished with the past rounds of financing will provide an idea of what your team is capable of.
  • Who else is likely to be participating in this investment round?

Best Practice with examples from Legendary Startup decks

How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Chewse Pitch Deck: How much? History of Fundraising. Who else participating?
How to write the best startup pitch / investor deck
Panjo Pitch Deck: Make your ask incredibly clear. How much? Use of Funds?
Canva startup pitch deck
Canva Pitch Deck: Make your ask incredibly clear. Funding and Terms

**Remarks: All the screenshots of the pitch deck captured above are originated from Slideshare.com**

SLIDE 12

Close

Slide Objectives

Lastly … This should include your logo and startup name, as well as your contact info so investors can set up follow up meeting with you. Perhaps some quotes from the press or other influencers where they say good things about your company.

That’s it. Trying to do much more is not going to make your pitch more effective. It is merely going to increase the likelihood that you will not get through it. Details can be drawn out in the Q&A or during subsequent meetings.

Remember to include your contact information — you would be surprised how many people forget it. Especially if your deck was forwarded, it should be easy for a person to track you down.

Toolkits

The Winning Startup Pitch Toolkit

Save 30+ days of your time in researching + designing your deck

A toolkit covers both the Content and Design of a Winning Startup Pitch Deck

CONTENT VAULT

Step by step guidelines, worksheets, best practice of 30+ legendary startup pitch to guide you through the writing process

startup pitch deck

The Blueprint – Step by step guidelines and worksheets to guide you through the writing process 

Including the

  1. Blueprint: the 6 Steps to write the presentation
  2. Guidelines: Step-by-Step guide to take you to the core message
  3. Worksheet: the 7 critical questions to ask about your audience
  4. Worksheet: 4 Questions to ask when get feedback about your deck

Winning Startup Pitch Deck – Instructions and examples from legendary pitch deck to help you write your deck

Including

1. The Building Blocks of the Winning Pitch Deck

  • Learning the structure of the winning deck
  • Teardown of 30+ legendary startup decks, learning the best practice in writing each slide

2. Language in writing the slides

  • Showcasing the action verbs you should use to help you connect the audience to your proposed outcome

3. How to tell a compelling story

  • Deep dive into legendary startup pitches to look at how they tell their story: the flow, the title, the content

Total 7 pdfs, 140+ pages.

Screenshots of the Guidelines / Worksheets in the Content Vault

Design VAULT

We took care the design for you so you can spend less time focusing on the little details that go into making your deck and more time out there actually pitching!

Startup pitch deck

The pitch deck is a necessary tool to raise funding from investors for your startup. The quality of your pitch deck (both content and visuals) has a big impact on what investors will think about your company and if they see it worthy of investment. However, delivering a pitch that inspires is much easier said than done. That’s why we created this Pitch Deck Template, so you can spend less time focusing on the little details that go into making your deck and more time out there actually pitching! Backed by learnings from other successful pitches, this template includes all the slides you’ll need laid out in a beautiful format so you can put your best foot forward.

If you’re looking to up your company’s pitching game today this template is an easy win.

Template Features:

  • 480+ total slides
  • Size 16:9 ratio
  • File Type: PPTX
  • Section Break Slides
  • Handcrafted Infographic in Powerpoint
  • Pixel-perfect illustrations
  • All Graphic Resizable and Editable
  • Picture Placeholder, drag & drop
  • 2 ppts (template and icon)

Screenshots of the template & vector icons

Screenshots of the Guidelines / Worksheets in the Content Vault

See what other people

Just like you

said about the toolkit

I have been sending my pitch decks to more than 50 VCs but got no reply. I start to look for ways to improve my deck and come across SlideBlueprint toolkit. I followed the step-by-step guidelines and read the best practice from other pitch decks to improve my pitch. I finally got calls for meetings with investors!
Adam G
Hospitality Industry
I always struggle how to convey a story in a pitch deck, especially it is just a 12-slides deck! Really helpful after reading “How to tell a compelling story” guidelines. Finally grabs how to make the flow / write a narrative for my pitch

Mara K
Fitness Industry
Awesome toolkits! Save me lots of time in researching online. Lots of slides in the template to choose from. Super Handy.


Mike Baker
E-Commerce

Compare the Winning Startup Pitch toolkit to…

  • Online Presentation Software in the market. They usually charge $/month, mainly focus on helping you on slide design but not the content. There is also a compatibility issues (vs. Microsoft ppt) for this type of software. 
  • Templates in the market. Mainly focus on theme design and give you bunch of infographics but not helping you on the actual content writing. They also don’t tailor made for the scenarios of Startup pitch deck.
  • Professional Writing service. They help you to write the whole deck but cost you a fortune!

There’s a different option. This Winning Startup Pitch Toolkit unlike any of these options.

It’s tested, affordable, and proven to work.

Only costs $57 (ONE OFF payment)

Close Menu

the 7 critical Questions to ask about your audience

Download Your COPY

SlideBlueprint Newsletter 02