Crunchbase's Jager McConnell:You only get one chance to make a first impression, and for founders looking for investment, that could mean the difference between success and failure. Jager McConnell of Crunchbase presents a fool-proof guide to improving your shitty pitch.
Posted by Web Summit on Friday, November 10, 2017
Jager has seen a lot of pitch decks, many of them terrible. Whether it’s for your business or someone else’s, he wants to rid the world of bad pitch decks.
The Key Quote
“With every further round of funding, only 15% of startups survive. Don’t be a statistic — fix your pitch deck.”
– Jager McConnell, CEO, Crunchbase
Jager McConnell presented the “10 Tenants of a Bad Pitch”. Here’s how you can avoid a bad pitch deck:
1) Don’t further complicate complex concepts . Your idea can be super complicated — but don’t include complex slides. Simplify diagrams, systems maps — don’t confuse your investors further.
2) Don’t have unreadable text. Don’t give investors something they need a magnifying glass to read. Investors will lose focus in trying to read all the words on the slide, and then they’ll lose focus in your pitch.
3) Don’t have confusing visuals. If you include a cyclical diagram— make sure it’s representing an actual cycle. If you include a flow diagram — make sure it’s representing something with an actual flow. Don’t use the wrong visual for what you’re trying to represent!
4) Don’t be too wordy. Don’t make investors read novels when they’re looking at your deck. Fewer, impactful words make for a far more enticing deck, and make the investors want to keep reading.
5) Don’t forget to keep your audience in mind. Be mindful, considerate, and intentional with every content choice in your deck. Your goal is to pitch your startup, not potentially offend an investor.
6) Don’t use buzzwords. “Advanced GPUs”, “cloud computing”, “IoT”, etc. Unless specific technologies are a crux of your solution, don’t bloat your pitch. Don’t lose investors in complicated language and confusing vocabulary.
7) Don’t use metrics out of context. Pick valuable metrics, and present them in meaningful ways. But make sure you actually show metrics — data can be a key selling point.
8) Don’t flaunt your ego. When presenting your team, don’t just show your face — show investors what you do. Give them important information like your credentials and experience — not just a dazzling smile in a headshot.
9) Don’t include a demo video. They can be technically brittle, and the video watching experience just sucks. Instead of a video recording, show investors the actual thing. Show them the actual flow with a live demo, or a clickable prototype with InVision.
10) Don’t make it a snooze fest. Make it fun, make it interesting. Find ways to not lose your investors’ interest — give your pitch some design love, think critically about content, and tell a great story.