After looking at countless investor decks and hearing pitches, I have started to notice a pattern of comments that I make to Founders. They are summarized below. CAVEAT ALERT – this is focus group of one AND all of these ideas are detailed in countless other slide decks.
Rule #1: Keep it short and simple – no more than 15 pages.
Rule #2: Include an Appendix and put as many slides as you want in it.
Rule #3: Include your contact information in the deck.
Rule #4: Use lots of graphics – a picture is worth a thousand words.
Rule #5: Clearly indicate the pain point and solution.
Rule #6: Include all the relevant information for investors.
Here is more or less the investor formula: to understand the problem/pain point; the solution; size and characteristics of the target market; Go to Market Strategy and TRACTION; product pipeline and IP portfolio/protection; competition/differentiation; business model with costs, prices and margins; path to profitability; details of the raise including use of funds and exit comparables; the team, including Advisors.
Rule #7: Create multiple decks for multiple audiences.
Rule # 8: Do NOT incorporate feedback from every Joe, Dick and Sally but DO proofread the deck.
Rule #9: Do NOT read slides during a presentation.
Rule #10: Practice the deck until it rolls off your tongue, in your sleep.