advice from Due Diligence of 50+ Pitch Decks

Is Your Pitch Deck Worth the $$$ You're Raising: Advice for Aligning Product, Technology, and AI in Your Pitch Deck Story

Post was originally published in July 2022, and updated in October + December 2022, March-May, September - November 2023

I help VC firms evaluate alignment between how SaaS (software-a-a-service) or HaaS (hardware-as-a-service) start-ups solve their customers’ pain points with their products, align incentives on product and pricing, and how they use technology and (where applicable) AI to do so. 

I review about 200+ decks/year; investors see 1000+ (!). What stands out are those that are great and those that aren't. To get your pitch decks to stand out (for good!), here's what I look for as I review each pitch deck.

Working Backwards from End Goals of Pitch Deck

First, we need to remember that funds exist because LPs are diversifying their portfolios by investing in start-ups and expect to get higher ROI/returns than the market. Funds will invest in founders that seem to have de-risked the idea in one way or another, often by finding a really narrow niche/focus area with many underserved customers -- or by getting SBIR (or similar) funding to begin proving out the idea. The more your pitch deck story talks about the work you've done to already de-risk the investment (from expertise to MVP to traction/similar), the more you'll stand out from the crowd.

Next, we need to understand the goal of a pitch deck. It won't get you a check, but it may get you a meeting if you can demonstrate why we need this now -- and that this is a (relatively) low-risk investment.

Due diligence is one such meeting, where the end goal may be either to get you to the next meeting, get you to an intro, get you to the next due diligence meeting, etc. Before I start, I find out what the (high-level) end goal is of due diligence, and work backward from there.




Technology and Infrastructure



Parting Advice

Now you know what you need to improve; good luck!

You're not getting a "yes" from investors. Let's rescue your pitch deck!  Please feel free to join our next group session or book a 1-1 session with me

Good luck!

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