A graphic of three pitch decks layered on top of each other on a gradient background

Be pitch ready with a custom pitch deck presentation

november 13, 2023

You’ve got a million-dollar idea but no one to help you realize your vision. Or your company plans to roll out a new product and needs approval before the real planning can begin. Or you have a great new idea for a client. Whatever it is you need to pitch, you’ll need a pitch deck to help communicate—and win confidence in—your plans to an audience.

What is a pitch?

A pitch is a plan that you present to investors, advocates, clients, or business partners in order to convince them to fund or support your idea and make it a reality. The pitch helps you sell yourself, your business, and your ideas. One way to make your case for a new business, product, or service is with a pitch deck.

What is a pitch deck?

A pitch deck is the presentation you use to communicate your ideas and share your pitch. It’s a professional form of visual communication that can share a lot of relevant information in a short amount of time and enable your supporters to feel confident in their decision to fund your endeavor. In many cases, a pitch deck is used to present a new idea, product, or service; but sometimes they’re used to ask for more funding or continued support for an established business.

These pitch presentations tend to be visually appealing, with just enough information to show that you’ve done your homework and understand your business, the competitive set, and what information the audience is looking for.

How to make a pitch deck presentation

If you’re putting together a pitch deck for the first time, there’s a lot of information you probably want to share. After all, this is your business, and you’ve put a lot of time and effort into making sure that everything is ready to go. However, when you’re making a presentation, it can be easy to overshare and cause potential partners to lose interest. Follow these tips for designing a pitch presentation that resonates with your audience and conveys information effectively and clearly.

Share important information

Your pitch doesn’t need to include every detail about your company or product, but some information shouldn’t be left out. Make sure you’re identifying a problem and presenting your brand as the solution. You should also identify the specific market that your business will be part of and show your product, service, or solution in action.

Show projected growth in revenue and metrics and hype up your team so your audience knows who is driving the business and what makes them integral to its success. It’s also good to show your audience that you understand the competitive landscape and where your company, product, or service fits in it and stands out from the crowd.

Since a pitch is commonly a way to ask for money, sharing your projected financials with your investors lets them know where your business is headed and if it’s a good idea for them to get on board. The goal of your pitch is to make your offering as attractive as possible to your audience.

A short way to remember what you need to include is the acronym: WHAC. This stands for:

  • What is it and what does your business offer?
  • How does it work?
  • Are you sure that it works?
  • Can you really do it?

A good pitch deck will answer all these questions and should assuage any doubt that your audience might have.

Design is crucial

Your pitch deck communicates a huge amount of information in a short amount of time and with a limited number of slides. Even if your idea is flawless, a poorly designed deck can keep you from getting the funding or approval you need. With that in mind, good design and properly formatted PowerPoint slides are crucial to communicating your points clearly. Make sure that you’re using a layout grid to keep things organized, as a sloppy presentation can indicate a lack of professionalism.

Make your points easy to understand by doing these things:

Keep it simple.

Keep it legible.

Keep it obvious.

No one want to squint to try and read tiny print on a screen or try to decipher poorly written text or charts that don’t make sense immediately. Make your point clear and concise and make sure that your design isn’t taking away from the information that you’re sharing. You want your audience to explicitly understand every point you’re making during your pitch—your product or business depends on it! Make sure there can be no misunderstanding anything you share.

Avoid excessive explanations, photos without captions or titles, memes, animations, and subtle humor. You want your audience to remember what you’re presenting, not your slides.

Pro tip:

Save time and energy with these free presentation templates from Microsoft Create.

An image of a colorful pink bar graph set against a blue background.

Share Insights

Your pitch deck should illustrate that you have a solid understanding of your business, idea, or product and where it fits within the competitive set. One way to share this information, and any other insights you’ve gleaned from your research, is with compelling, easy-to-understand visual aids.

Use charts and graphics in your presentation to share stats about the current state of the market, your competitors’ revenue, projected earnings, and a projected rollout of your go-to-market strategy. Compare your competitors on a visually appealing XY graph, emphasize numbers with charts, and break down a large amount of information with a tiled layout that’s easy to read. The more information you can share, the more reason your audience has to trust in your business plan.

Have an elevator pitch

You should always be prepared to pitch your business or idea. Even if you don’t have your deck handy, you should be so well-versed in the intricacies of your idea that you should have no problem sharing information about the problem you’ve identified and the solution that you plan to provide. You should be able to wrap up your summary with a call to action, which entices your listener to schedule a meeting where they can learn about all the details of your idea.

You never know who you’ll meet. Knowing your idea inside and out means that all the relevant information will be top of mind, so that you’ll be prepared should someone ask you what it is you do. That someone might turn out to be an angel investor who could take a financial interest in your plan.

What’s more, your ability to give a compelling elevator pitch demonstrates your passion for your company, which is something that any audience will be able to recognize.

Create a compelling pitch deck that showcases your plan and abilities, explains how it overshadows the competition, and lay out a clear timeline for action. Remember to keep your design clean, informative, and uncomplicated. Your enthusiasm for the project will go a long way, but the more confident you are in what you’re presenting will be what makes the difference.

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