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How to auspiciously pitch a VC over Zoom

  • Tech
  • venture capitalist
  • Zoom
  • investor
  • Pitch

How to auspiciously pitch a VC over Zoom

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If you can raise basic right now, you will have article in common with Taylor Swift. Closing a adventure deal during 2020 is like autograph a pop song that hits No. 1 on the charts. It takes amazing work and skill to achieve, not just luck.

In fact, VC funds are much like record labels, because both make the bulk of their money on their platinum deals. A major adventure fund can only thrive if it manages to find and lead one of the top 10 to 20 adventure deals in the United States every agenda year.

Especially over Zoom, your pitch has to be absolute before investors will start thinking So get ready to show VCs how you will build an amazing company, with broad-reaching impact, that becomes one of the best deals in their portfolio.

Composing the absolute story for a banking audience 

What accent do investors speak?

Surprise! It’s not English.

It’s finance.

 may not be founding a aggregation purely to make money, but able investors are. The pitch deck is a  document. A pitch affair is a  discussion.

The deck has one job: Show that your aggregation will earn profits.

Whether you talk about user needs, artefact achievement or business campaigns, always construe that qualitative advice into  impact. Dollars are the ambit that affairs most to your banking audience.

We can take it a step further. The ideal “story” follows , thus communicating altogether to a banking audience.

Deliver these four letters in this sequence, so you can create these four abstracts in the mind of the investor:

  1. “We have articular a target chump with a aching need who will pay.” > 
  2. “We built a artefact or account that sells for more than it costs.” > 
  3. “The market is large, and we can build a unicorn-scale company.” 
  4. “As we grow, we are creating a moat that protects the profits we earn.” 

A VC has to arrive at all four of these abstracts to absolve a risky investment.

Convert the story into a deck 

Next adapt your slides. Write a deck like this:

  • Open with an attention-getter.
  • Introduce the team.
  • Walk through the four main questions (two slides per question).
  • Finish with banking projections.

Why do you need an attention-getter? Because VCs see hundreds of pitches, and tend to walk in with low expectations, conceivably only half alert at first. Convince them that a sea change is occurring, a major change is afoot, a complete reset is coming, and that it’s about to adapt the winners and losers for a large industry.

Opportunity is at hand, and  have a plan to abduction it. Suddenly, they are adorable up and axis up the volume.

Before they absorb the details, they first need to be sure you are backable .

So now the team slide. Wow them with a able account of your own bio, that shows you are mentally tough, driven, persuasive, practical, and consistently self-improving. Then explain how you have admiring a team of all-stars. At this point, they are  ears.

Need more help? If you want to work on the flow of the slides and how to weave calm a anecdotal story, then the Pillar VC Pitch Deck Storytelling Template is a good resource.

Know your hook 

Hit songs have a “hook” about in the middle that admirers find irresistible. You should too.

What is going to make your aggregation almighty important and admired in the future? Is it your business model, barriers to entry, arrangement economics or aggressive dynamics?

What unique acumen have you developed about the customer?

How do you build outsized value? Why is this a profit machine? Why will barter keep coming back?

What are the  of your company’s success? Is it economies of accomplishment scale? Technical leadership? A unique channel? A arrangement effect?

The hook is a crack that an broker can use to explain the genius of the deal to his or her partners. Make your hook abundantly clear.

Drafting and cutting individual slides 

Start with the Pillar seed stage pitch deck template. (If you are adopting for Series A, you should also add abundant slides to prove you have accomplished product-market fit.) Then beforehand a voiceover for each slide. Think about main points and transitions. Polish and refine your story.

Then hire a clear artist to give it pizzazz. The visual affection of a business presentation affairs more than you might imagine. Simplifying ideas and eliminating ataxia with your beat eye is approved proof that you know how to prioritize. Keep it simple, clean, clear, adorable and full of white space and clear font sizes.

Finish by agreeable your deck into two abstracted versions:

Teaser deck — 12-15 slides

This is an adapter you can advanced with a appeal to meet and walk through during your first call or meeting. Make the teaser an attachment,  a DocSend. Why? Investors do not make decisions in a vacuum. They do a lot of behind-the-scenes discussing with their centralized team, fellow investors, and expert advisers. You  them to be able to do that, easily and privately, because that acknowledgment is what helps them decide whether to engage. So make your deck easy to forward. Just assume your competitors will see it, and keep it all-encompassing where you choose.

The teaser deck will cause many VCs to pass and you  that, so that you do not waste your adored time block dead ends and sap your own aplomb by audition nos from people who were never even possibilities. See “How VCs Really Evaluate Seed Investments.”

Full desk — 20-25 slides plus an addendum of up to 50 slides

You will use your longer deck for use with an absorbed broker who schedules a second affair or site visit. The 25 slides walk through every aspect of the story, plus the financials. Back-up data and abundant answers to common questions are accessible as needed in your appendix.

Intensively practice your pitch

Warm up those vocal cords; it’s time to start alive on your pitch.

We acclaim acquirements to tell the story at three altered levels, so it can amplitude beneath or longer to fit the accessible time, like an accordion.

The high-level adaptation should be just one allegorical book per slide, which should be delivered by the title right on the slide. Anyone can read your deck at this level in five minutes and accept your bulletin after you continuing there to explain the slides. It is important that the deck stand on its own.

The medium-level adaptation should fit in a one-hour meeting. Plan on a five-minute introduction, then 40 account for the deck, of which half is pitch and half is Q&A, so it feels more like a mutual discussion. The final 15 account is free time to talk about their reactions and advice, next steps and your questions about them and their firm. That all boils down into you being able to present 20 slides in 60 abnormal each. We beforehand you write this out at first.

Finally, for each allusive slide, adapt a three- to five-minute bright story. You don’t have time to tell an chestnut for each of the 20 slides, but when you see the admirers is aptitude advanced and very absorbed in a specific topic, then you will be able to go deep and wow them.

Memorize your key numbers. Absorbed VCs will ask lots of acid and what-if questions, and you need to know your numbers to be able to answer on the fly. Great CEOs know by heart the sales targets and headcount targets for every month in the next 12 months and every year for the next several years, and they obsess about their business metrics like CAC, LTV, agency rate, ASP, days receivable, the boilerplate salary for altered positions, and so on. Such numbers are vital to architecture an actual company, so your clay them in beforehand is a sign of operating adequacy and readiness; not alive them is a sign you and the activity are still green.

Special tips for casting over Zoom

Due to COVID-19 all pitches are remote right now, and remote casting is a bit different.

During a video pitch, the broker will be staring into his or her monitor, so you have room to accommodate a bit more detail than normal. Stage the capacity with action to reveal the advice point by point as you speak, so you can stay in sync with the audience.

Make sure you are well lit. Buy a $50 ring light and place it  your camera to brighten your face, so investors can see you clearly, no matter the time of day.

Sit closer to your computer than you about would so that your face and amateur take up the bulk of the screen. This projects a strong image and makes you absolutely visible. Sit up beeline and make sure you are in full view. If your laptop has an older camera, buy an alien camera that supports at least 720P or above.

Keep your accomplishments simple and clean. Dont stress about assuming artifacts of your life in the accomplishments behind you, cerebration that an appropriately placed authority or acute book will make a difference. It won’t. Be alert of using a packaged Zoom background, as they don’t always work well and can prove to be distracting.

Always keep your eyes focused and adorable at the camera. Don’t use a abstracted adviser for your deck — it will give the actualization that you are adorable away from the screen.

Facial expressions are important on video pitches. Since the investors don’t have the account of having met you or having a advertence point for your mannerisms, you need to make sure you look abundantly affianced and “on.” Beware of adorable overly austere or absolution your eyes wander while the other person is speaking — what is accustomed in person can appear able on video.

Speak more anxiously than usual, taking care to enunciate. It is analytical that investors hear every word. Convenance in beforehand with a colleague. If you are not coming through, invest in an alien mic. (Swift reportedly annal with a $9,000 Telefunken C12, but even a $200 Blue Yeti is enough to make your voice sound pretty great.)

Practice with accompany over video at least a dozen times before your first important call, so the mechanics become second nature. If you are casting with addition member of your team, convenance the handoffs until the transitions are seamless.

Remember, you can’t ascendancy everything. It is OK for your kids to make a abruptness actualization during a pitch. We are all human and managing WFH at the same time.

Now lay down the tracks

With your deck in hand, start taking meetings!

Bring a co-founder or assistant to watch the admirers and take notes. After each meeting, revisit the audience’s acknowledgment at each slide. Don’t change your bulletin based on just one reaction, but if you see abrasion at the same point across several meetings, then do make an edit.

Write down every catechism you get. Draft a slide with a crisp answer to each and put it in the appendix. After a while, you are ready to handle anything.

Are you audition rejections? Even great companies take a lot of work to explain, and even accomplished CEOs start off audition rejections. So be like Taylor Swift and 

Keep cutting … until at last your song finds its admirers and your admirers rewards you with the right kind of acclaim — a signed Series A term sheet!

Appear June 23, 2020 — 06:30 UTC

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