How to create an investment-worthy pitch deck

This post has been provided by the team at Prosper. Based here at Net.Works, Prosper have redefined the relationship between a business and their accountant. For more information check out www.letsprosper.co.uk.

If you plan to seek investment in your business, an impressive pitch deck is a key weapon in your fundraising armoury. So what is a pitch deck and how can it help to you generate investment in your business? Let’s take a look…

What is a pitch deck?

A pitch deck is a brief presentation, usually created using familiar software such as PowerPoint, Keynote, or Prezi, that is used to give investors a brief overview of your business. Done well, a pitch deck will get potential investors excited, engage them in a conversation about your business, and ultimately lead to an investment.

A pitch deck should be short and concise, but still paint a complete and accurate picture of your business. That includes how it started, where the business is today, and your plans for the future.

What are your goals?

A pitch deck is delivered as an introduction to your business, so rather than sealing an investment, the pitch deck should aim to spark interest in your company. Investments are rarely made after one meeting, but deliver a compelling pitch deck and you will earn the right to discuss your plans in more detail at a later date.

How to create the perfect pitch deck

There are all sorts of styles and pitch deck formats you can use, as you can see from some of these successful examples. Whatever approach you choose to take, your pitch desk needs to grab the investor’s attention and cover all the important details. This includes:

1) Your vision
Tell the investors who you are and why you’re here. Keep it short, sweet and preferably interesting.

2) The problem
Introduce the problem your business is trying to solve. Ideally, make the story relatable so the investors really understand your goals.

3) The opportunity
Use this slide to identify your ideal customer and calculate the size of the market. Explain how you will position yourself in this market and the steps you’ll take to get there.

4) The solution
How will your product solve the problems customers are experiencing? Use images and examples to keep your explanation interesting.

5) Making money
Now it’s time to talk about money. How much will you charge? What will your margin be? How will your price fit in wider market?

6) Traction
What evidence do you have that your business is going to work? Do you already have sales or parties that are interested in buying or stocking your product? What major milestones have you reached so far? Investors will want to see evidence of market traction to reduce their risk.

7) Marketing and sales strategy
How are you going to achieve the level of sales you need? You should detail the key tactics you will use to generate interest in the product and get it in front of prospective customers. Will you sell online? Will you market via social media?

8) Competition
Identify the competition and explain how you are different – why will your customers choose you?

9) The team
Who will be working behind the scenes and how are they perfectly placed to help you achieve your goals?

10) The financials
You should explain to the investor how much money you need and what you’re planning to spend it on. If you already have other investors on board, now would be a good time to introduce those investors and explain why they chose to invest.

Short and simple

Remember, keep it short and simple. This is not a business plan and the investor does not want to know every minute detail about your business – that can come later. At this stage, focus on delivering quality information in a concise and compelling way. And don’t worry about being too modest, there’s nothing wrong with being passionate about your business!

Prosper run a fortnightly Startup Workshop at Net.Works. which offers advice on managing the finances of your business. For more details or to reserve a space email gosia@net-works.london  

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