If you’re starting a business or looking for capital you’re going to need an effective pitch deck, one that will make investors take notice. For those who don’t know, a pitch deck is a brief visual presentation that gives investors an overview of your company. As the business site Bplans explains it, “If you’re raising money for your business, having an impressive pitch deck is a key component in your fundraising toolkit. A great pitch deck gets potential investors excited about your idea and engages them in a conversation about your business, hopefully leading to an investment. It should cover the key points of your business plan, the products and services you provide, high-level financial projections, and funding needs. Your pitch deck should work well on its own as a visual document, but it will primarily be used as a tool to tell the story of your business.” If you’re new to building a pitch deck, there are examples on the web, and you can use common software or apps such as PowerPoint, Google Slides, or the graphic design website Canva.
The online learning platform Masterclass has excellent pointers for building pitch decks, including 10 essential elements they say everyone should include in their pitch deck:
- Introduction. The first slide should introduce the pitch deck and explain the business in simple and clearly understood terms. Businesses typically include a unique value proposition as part of their first slide, which compares their products and services to another established company.
- Problem. The pitch deck needs to explain a problem the business’s target market faces. This information will demonstrate the necessity of your product or service in the marketplace.
- Target market. A target market is a group of people that share common characteristics. Every service or product is aimed at a specific group, and yours should be featured in your pitch deck. Include information on the competitive landscape in which your business exists and the market opportunity to succeed in that landscape. What is the market size for products or services like those offered by the business?
- Solution. The solution slide should state the way(s) in which the business solves the problems that your target market is facing. The best way to relay this information is through a narrative approach—provide relatable stories of customers using these products to improve their lives. Support those statements with descriptions and visuals of the products or services themselves, including photographs, screenshots, or even video of a physical demo.
- Traction. This slide validates the company’s business model by showing any month-over-month growth through early sales and support. The goal is to reduce any fear of risk in potential investors. This slide can include a simple bullet point list of milestones such as the number of users, annual revenue return rate, and profit margins.
- Marketing and sales strategy. It’s important to detail how the product will be advertised and sold to its market. Investors will use this information to leverage a company’s understanding of the market size, and how its marketing approach differs from its competition.
- Competition. Include information on the qualities that set your product or service apart from other entities or alternatives in its market—you can pull this information from your competitive analysis.
- Team. The team slide will underscore a company’s management team’s expertise and capabilities to market and sell a product. Listing the key team members (and co-founders if applicable) and detail how their expertise and previous experience can help establish the company’s competitive advantage.
- Financials. Investors will typically want to see a company’s financial health for a period of three to five years, including income statements, projected growth, and information on the business model itself. Infographics, such as pie charts or bar graphs, will be more effective in presenting the information than listing numbers. The information on the traction slide may help to corroborate projected figures.
- Investments and funding. Sometimes, entrepreneurs will craft a pitch deck that forgets a key piece of information: the amount of money needed to fund the project. It’s important to include that detail and note how the funding will be spent to help the company reach its goals. This explanation will build much-needed trust with investors.
Growing a small business can be difficult for entrepreneurs, especially when trying to juggle day-to-day tasks. That’s where VersaTel Solutions can help. Our team of experts can handle bookkeeping, HR tasks, and administrative work for you. Reach out to us so we can help give you the time to take your business to the next level.