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Synopsis

82% of businesses fail because of cash flow problems and 20% of startups fail within the first year, per Nexea. That is why a powerful business pitch is your sword and shield. Successful start-ups learn from rejections and know that preparation is key. Use our Business Pitch Deck to communicate your vision with compelling visuals, make investors fall in love with your idea, get the resources, turn your concepts into reality and thrive.

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Slide highlights

With this slide, introduce the problem your product or service is aiming to solve. Remember that the more severe the problem that your company is solving, the more valuable your solution will be in the eyes of the stakeholders.

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As you can see from the statistics below, "the team slide can affect 90% of the business idea ability to take off the ground." Use this slide to introduce and give credit to the amazing talent that's got your back.

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Using testimonials in your pitch not only helps you to answer the audience's question of "why you?" but also allows to transform your sales pitch into a credible, unbiased recommendation for your product," per "Entrepreneur."

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Statistics

Strategic consulting and coaching firm, The Winning Pitch, published some key stats every startup should know before pitching:

  • Investors look at pitch decks for just an average of three minutes and 44 seconds
  • Investors pay attention to two times more on finance and team slides rather than the other pitch deck slides. The team slide can affect 90% of the business idea ability to take off the ground
  • Startups that fail to successfully raise funding, usually give up after an average of 6.7 weeks
  • Startups need approximately 40 quality investor meetings to close the deal
  • The average amount of time it takes to raise funding from firms is four weeks shorter than the amount of time it takes to raise funding from angel investors
  • Angel investors invest $25,000-$100,000 on average in a project, while seed firms usually invest $250,000- $1M.
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Application

In January, 2020, "Harvard Business Review" published an online survey seeking insights from managers who hear a lot of pitches. The managers were asked what they value in a business pitch the most and least. Here is what the researchers learned from 1,800 responses:

Lesson 1: be a master of the facts, but know that for an executive audience, your relevant experience matters most.

The research found that the more senior the audience you are pitching to, the sooner you must register your relevant experience and how it solves their challenge in unscripted conversation. The advice is: "Listen well, and map your knowledge and experience to what you hear. But for less senior audiences, it's more important to show mastery of facts. Do your research and show it."

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Lesson 2: avoid pitches where only one person speaks.

Within the research, respondents of all levels said that a pitch team with good chemistry together is much more trustworthy than one senior person who does all the talking. The advice is: "Reconsider the wisdom of bringing people to a pitch who say nothing or have no clear expertise. Use your team to amplify your expertise in a pitch, not dilute it. Of course, one senior person who is expert in all the relevant areas, listens well to the audience, and can build (or already has) their trust, will defeat a team that does not listen and is unable to apply their collective expertise to the contours of the audience's objective."

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Lesson 3: be passionate about the problem, not just your product.

Beyond experience and facts, passion for the pitch was a top trait that the managers surveyed highlighted as crucial. In fact, one executive-level respondent stated:"I want to feel their energy for the pitch. The other key aspect is their mastery of the detail. Is it really in their blood … or just skin deep?" And another respondent said: "I want to hear about me not about them." The general expert advice is: "if you're pitching, be passionate about who you are pitching too as much as you are about your own product."

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Lesson 4: listen closely and respond carefully.

The managers surveyed say that few decision-makers actually are interested in being "pitched." They want the pitching team to listen, ask questions and deeply understand the investors' point of view on their problem before hearing the solution. And the more senior the audience, the more they want to have a conversation, to be heard and to hear what you think of their challenge, the researchers found. "I wish they listened more and spoke less," was a feedback from one of the executive respondents.

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Expert advice

Who knows more about business pitches than the "sharks" from the ABC's "Shark Tank?" Share these with your team before your pitch meeting and get everybody infected with inspiration and encouragement.

  1. "Follow the green, not the dream."– Mark Cuban
  2. "A goal without a timeline is just a dream."– Robert Herjavec
  3. "As an entrepreneur, you can always find a solution if you try hard enough."– Lori Greiner
  4. "I have just as much right to be here as you, I'm just as smart as you are. You might not think I'm smart, but I know I'm smart. Guess what, I've done a lot. Don't you dare look down on me."– Barbara Corcoran
  5. "If you can't come clean and tell investors how and why you failed, that raises a red flag. They need to see that you learned from it and came back stronger."– Daymond John
  6. "My partners ... taught me that in order to create wealth, I needed to pair up with people whose strengths compensated for my weaknesses."– Kevin O'Leary
  7. "Tough times never last; tough people always do." – Robert Herjavec
  8. "The difference between the real winners is how long they take to feel sorry for themselves. My winners feel it … but they come back up and say 'hit me again.'" – Barbara Corcoran
  9. "You have to have a senseless belief in your idea and yourself — almost to the point of being delusional. Remember that everyone has advice but no one knows what you have to go through to start, grow and scale a business until they live it. Talk is cheap, but action speaks volumes."– Robert Herjavec
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