One request we get quite often from our startup clients is to help them ideate and create the best startup pitch deck in the world. They want the deck to tell everyone who sees it exactly why and what they should be investing in their startup.
Here’s the harsh reality though, creating a good pitch deck is really hard. We are not magicians, and we can only do so much if the time or the market is not ready for what you have to offer. However, one thing that we do see and can hep with is when the pitch deck is incorrect or incomplete – this is a very common problem.
Ask yourself these questions
- Why invest in me as a founder(s)
- Why is this product/service worth your investment
- Why is this the right time
This is an important first step without charging into writing down everything that you believe is the reason why investors should fork over their money to you.
Small mistakes have larger consequences
Founders often come to us and share their decks with us, telling us that they are perfectionists or have great attention to detail. After a quick review, we usually spot about 3 mistakes per slide – from spelling and grammar to excessive hyperbole.
What they often do not realise is that investors may not know them as people and only have their deck to judge the quality of the founder and startup. Mistakes are then a key indicator of the quality and attention to detail. A minor spelling mistake in a 15 page slide deck is not a big issue, but glaring mistakes show an untidy mind or a founder that did not put any effort into building their deck.
Common mistakes many founders make include:
- Spelling and grammar mistakes
- Overcrowded slides with too much information
- Lack of proper research on key stats in your industry
- Confusing or contradictory slides that can derail the flow of information
- Really badly designed decks
- WAY TOO MUCH JARGON!
It is essential to take some time to review your work and produce a clean and coherent deck.
One more thing to highlight. Please remember that design matters. No one wants to read a long deck with no structure, different fonts and no spacing. If you lack a design eye, then focus on making it neat and presentable – use the ruler and automatic alignment features that most presentation software offers. If this is something that makes your eyes bleed, then get someone to help you make it more presentable, because it shows an investor that you really do care about your business.
How do you structure a perfect pitch deck?
We cannot emphasize how important it is to do your research and spend time creating a sound structure for your pitch deck. A pitch deck is a like a great novel – it takes you on a journey and at the end, the investor has to feel like it is a satisfactory and happy ending.
To help you also the way, we have developed a simple template that we use for most of our pitch decks and we have based this on feedback from investors and research conducted on over 100 successful pitch decks that we were able to get our hands on.
- What major problem are you addressing with your startup?
- What is the solution that you have that is different from everyone else?
- What is the product/service?
- Where do you see the company in the next 3-5 years? What can I expect as an investor?
- Are you solving a big enough problem? What is your market size?
- What is the competitive landscape like? Do you have a competitor or 100 competitor?
- How do you plan to take this product to market or monetise?
- Where are you now and where will you be in the next year?
- Who are you (the founder(s)) and what do you bring to the table?
If your deck answers all these questions, chances are you’re on the right track and will give the investor a chance to understand more about your business.
About the author
Terng Shing is the Founder and CEO of SYNC PR, a PR and content marketing startup that uses technology to reduce time wasting and administrative tasks in delivering results. Based in Singapore, Terng Shing has been focused on helping startups and SMEs build their brand story through media and content.
His experience includes a decade of work in PR and communications agencies, managing top-tier fortune 500 companies to the leading startups in Southeast Asia. Terng Shing has a passion for innovative communications and is convinced that PR is the next great industry to see positive disruption.
This is a sponsored post by SYNC.