Improving Business School Presentations To Be 'Investor Friendly'Added by itxaso on Mon 13th Aug, 2012 14:39
The lean-startup methodology has become a core element of the development process for many startups.
As a result, some entrepreneurs have adapted their pitches to investors to include evidence of their customer development process. However, we still see many mediocre presentations. Some entrepreneurs seem to be making a consulting style of formal presentation rather than a pitch to investors. Universities are not helping in this respect. Unfortunately, there is a big difference between the numbers and financial assumptions and predictions requested at business-school presentations, and the metrics that investors want to see.
In terms of structure, 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint by Guy Kawasaki is a good starting point to prepare your pitch. Note however that this blog entry by Guy K. was written in 2005 when the lean startup movement was still not as evolved and accepted as it is now. In this blog post we list 5 elements and tools that might help you adapt your deck and make it clear to investors what the opportunity is:
1. Start your pitch with a hook that captures the attention of the investor and makes it clear what your product is about. In this blog entry you can find some examples of hooks used in pitches at YC. In a standard pitch, the hook will define the problem you have identified and the product or service that you will develop to solve that problem. "X for Y" type of hooks (i.e. It is the Airbnb for boats) are frequently used, as they are short and clarifying.
2. Focus on the Customer Development process: show that you have talked with your customers, that you know them well and specifically that you know what they want. Obviously, you want your customers to be paying for your product. You do not need many paying customers, but you need a few to prove that you are solving their real pain.
3. Have a clear strategy: execution is going to be your tool to succeed in front of your competitors. Learn from your competitors' strategies to define the most effective way to acquire customers, to increase traffic and conversion rates, and to have them recommend your product. Borrow from Analogs and Antilogs for defining the strategy.
4. Define your customer segment and the minimum product (features) that you need to develop to serve that customer segment. The wider the customer segment, the more complex your product which will require more resources to develop it. Brant Cooper's Opportunity Matrix might help you analyse the market and to choose the customer segments.
5. Prepare an extra slide including the numbers of your Conversion Metrics Matrix. These numbers show user acquisition, activation, retention, referral and revenue. Investors want to see current numbers rather than future unreliable predictions.
These are just some basic ideas for you to improve the content of your pitch. There are many examples and resources online that entrepreneurs can use to improve their pitch. Certainly, the most important part is to listen carefully to the questions. This is the best feedback you can get to improve your presentation. Good luck!Tweet