Startups typically prepare a pitch deck to present to potential investors for funding. A pitch deck is a brief presentation that provides investors with an overview of your business. It typically focuses on showcasing your product and business model. An excellent pitch is highly essential to the success of a startup seeking funding from investors.
According to Romeen Sheeth, an angel investor who heard 200 companies pitch and invested over $1million last year, every great pitch has these 5 ingredients to help you maximize your chances when fundraising.
- Problem: Is this an issue?
- Solution: Do you have the fix?
- Market: Is this a big enough issue?
- Business: Can you make money
- Team: Do you have the human resources to do it?
The best pitches nail all 5. Good ones hit 4. Subpar hit 3 or less.
The problem statement is an explanation of why a set of circumstances is painful for a set of users. There’s one word in that sentence that is most important: painful. If your problem is not painful enough, it’s a vitamin. The best startups are pain killers.
The solution statement is an explanation of how you address the pain felt by your users. If you don’t have the right solution, you won’t get customer traction. Customers don’t buy your thesis on the pain point. They buy the actual thing that solves their pain point.
In tech, only businesses that have outsized potential get funded. To have outsized potential, you have to either be in a: (a) small, but rapidly growing market or (b) large existing market that can be resegmented. If not, the business is not venture backable.
The business model defines how you print cash. What is the key insight you’ve figured out that other people haven’t? You don’t need to reinvent the wheel on everything to be a compelling business. Just explain the secret sauce that helps you capture the value.
Everything else is academic if you can’t execute. Ultimately the investor is betting on your team’s ability to bring out the reality in the insights around the problem, solution, market, and business. Communicate why you are the best in the world to build the business.
Once you feel good about these 5, think through the connection points. Every topic that comes up in the conversation will be a function of a connection point. For example:
- Problem-Market = Industry Dynamics
- Solution-Market = Competition
- Market-Business = Unit Economics
When you pitch, always keep it simple. Understand the 5 core ingredients, think through how they relate to one another, communicate with clarity, and don’t assume investors understand your business.