Perfect your pitch by allowing your audience to annotate it in real-time

Looking for a way to analyze & improve your pitch? A new app called Feedback Fast allows you to record your pitch while your audience annotates it in real-time. Afterwards, you can watch it back & witness all the parts where your audience felt strongly OR felt “meh.” Additionally, you can read the stream of comments left by individual viewers. The app (previously called Intercourse) used to be $0.99, but is currently in the app store for FREE.

This seems like an extremely useful app for people who are dedicated to perfecting their pitch. It also seems as though small communities, such as those found in startup incubators & hacker spaces, could also greatly benefit from this app.

The Team Slide: Investors don’t want to hear your life story

When drafting your startup’s pitch deck, don’t go overboard on the Team slide. The main goal of the Team slide is to highlight your team’s past accomplishments, but that doesn’t mean list every project you’ve ever worked on. Your key points should be somewhat relevant to the product you’re pitching, plus prove that you’re qualified to drive this startup to success.

Case Studies:

  • Profitably’s pitch deck has lots of good info, yet their Team slide has potential to instill much more confidence. Simplifying your team slide & removing some bullet points may be the most effective way to better your team slide, especially if you have alot of info on it.
  • BrandBoards’ Team slide stays relevant & proves that they’re accomplished…almost to the point of bragging! If you’ve made truly awesome accomplishments in your career (stuff like $1 Billion+ in sales, or working with brands like NFL, MLB, NHL, etc…) then definitely put those in your deck! If you haven’t, then briefly outline the most prestigious accomplishments you have and try to spin them as relevant.
  • Cadee’s minimalist Team slide is visually appealing and doesn’t overload you with details. Sometimes less is more. What’s really cool though is how they list their golf handicaps on the slide. It may seem a little non sequitur…until you remember that they’re pitching a golf startup. Stay relevant.

Other Tips:

  • AngelList founder, Babak Nivi, recommends placing yourself as the last entry on the team slide because it not only makes you appear more humble, but also allows you to easily transition into the next slide (The Problem) by discussing how your travels led you to discovering the problem.
  • Dave McClure‘s pitch deck guide, Startup Viagra, suggests that VCs get “hot & bothered” when you focus on certain attributes of your team. Geeks should try and prove that they have a strong technical background, while Entrepreneurs should highlight the companies they’ve sold. If you’re a Sales/Marketing guy, do your best to prove that you’ve helped a company become profitable or generated immense amounts of revenue (aka “making it rain”).

Failed company, successful pitch deck

Here at Pitchenvy we like to showcase a wide-range of startup pitch decks. Most of the decks that we post are from successful and/or funded companies, but as some of you may have noticed, some of them are from failed companies.

You’re probably asking: Why showcase pitch decks from companies that have gone under? Well why not?

The point of our gallery is to provide examples of good pitch decks. Just because a company crashed doesn’t mean that they had a bad pitch deck. Take for example the pitch deck; they have crisp graphics, a straight-forward demo, and measurable metrics. Not a bad mix for an effective pitch deck.

According to a recent TechCrunch article, the founders of revealed that they closed their doors because 1) the market was too saturated, and 2) they were beginning to compete with email. Those are pretty good reasons to shift your focus if you ask me!

Sure, they could’ve added a slide or two to their pitch deck to help alleviate any worries investors might have about market saturation- but the problem would still exist! That’s like covering a red wine stain with a rug; you’re hiding the problem instead of fixing it. That’s not what pitch decks are for.

Moral of the story? A pitch deck can only get you so far. It’s up to you to make the right calls and prevent your company from sinking.

Advice for an effective pitch

What’s a pitch deck & why’s it so important?

A pitch deck is a presentation (usually PowerPoint or Keynote) created by a startup in order to summarize & effectively communicate their business proposal to potential investors. Pitch decks help startups organize their business models in an easy-to-understand manner so that third-parties can get the gist of their business without excessive explanation. Pitch decks are usually used when asking for funding from venture capitalists. They also contain important financial information about a company, such as revenue and how much money the company  raised in previous rounds of funding.

Why is a pitch deck so important? Because often times the first time a VC is introduced to your business idea is through your pitch deck. After seeing your pitch deck they will decide if they want to invest in your company or hear more about it. Even if they don’t, they might send your pitch deck to other investors / friends who might be interested. This is why it’s important to make sure your pitch is easy to understand and applicable to all audiences.

We will be discussing more tips for creating effective pitch decks in future articles. Stay tuned!