What is an investor deck?
An investor deck or pitch deck is a summary of business usually presented in a powerpoint format.
Why does an investor deck matter?
Investor deck is much more than just a piece of paper (or presentation). An investor deck is a reflection of how well you understand and can communicate the story to others. It involves looking deep into each and every aspect of your business and question all the fundamentals.
Regardless of how amazing your startup is doing or great your idea is, if you can't get across the key points in a succinct, simple manner, you will have a hard time raising funds.
On the face of it investor deck is a summarized version of your business plan to convey the story in a short amount of time (~5 mins).
The purpose of an investor deck is not for an investor to write you a cheque but to get them excited so they would like to meet you and learn about your startup in detail.
How to prepare a compelling investor deck?
Having looked at thousands of pitch decks as an investor and consultant, there's a standard story pattern that has proven to work well.
It's not about creating a glossy looking sales collateral but an easy to read - and understand - story that can get investors excited.
I good deck usually have 10-15 slides with little text and more visuals. Each slide must have a one liner summary at the top which connects one slide to the other ー objective of tagline is ensure that any reader should be able to understand the story by just reading the headlines on each slide.
Before you jump into preparing your deck, you must answer these questions as succinctly as possible to ensure you understand the story inside out and can see the golden thread.
How to prepare financial models and projections?
Majority of startups don't pay much attention to financial modelling when preparing their business plans or fundraising process. It's mostly seen as a secondary priority with very little attention paid to the actual numbers and assumptions underlying the business.
When asked about how much you are looking to raise, most entrepreneurs struggle to give a cohesive answer. It's generally based on rough calculations, industry benchmarks or sometimes wild guesses.
It doesn't have to be this way.
Building a sound financial model not only helps you understand implications of your business initiatives on bottomline but also translate into clear picture of your expenses going forward. This directly helps you understand your investment needs and gives confidence to investors that you are on top of your business.
Here's a simple template you can refer to prepare your startup's financial model.