10 steps to the perfect pitch deck

Stuff you need to know for success.

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As a startup, your story is your greatest asset. But it can be tricky to tell the world how awesome your idea is in 6 slides (or less) and in three minutes or less.  But rest assured! It can be done. Here are our tips for a successful and, say it with me, simple pitch deck. We polled CBC jury members and compiled this list of what to include and what not to include in your pitch deck.

  1. Keep it simple. This cannot be overstated.
  2. Know your story. You are the best person to tell your story. Don’t let the deck do it for you. Speak conversationally. Let your story come out with your spoken words. Do not read directly from your slides.
  3. Use your deck as visual cues, but do not read directly off the deck when pitching. This is very important and requires practice.
  4. Do not rely on technology, animated graphics, or anything fancy. As we all know, technology often fails. If you let your deck do the talking for you, you are not maximizing an opportunity to sell your idea.
  5. Up front, identify what problem you are solving. Do it in three sentences or less.
  6. Use charts and data, but don’t overdo the charts. It can be overwhelming and sometimes charts are hard to read from a distance.
  7. Identify how your project will make money. This is key (obviously). Tell this part of your story toward the end of your deck.
  8. Use color, but don’t go nuts. This falls under the “keep it simple” mantra.
  9. Don’t forget to give a head nod to your team.
  10. Have fun. Nowhere is it written that you are not allowed to have fun telling your story. In fact, you should have fun. Hell, this is fun stuff. We like to call it the froth of life.