How to deliver a convincing pitch to investors

A strong investment pitch deck will help you deliver a convincing pitch to investors, but what exactly should you include in one?

Whilst every founder should tailor their pitch and their investor pitch deck to themselves and their business, there are some basic principles to creating a strong pitch to investors that you’ll find useful for getting started.

At Seedrs we’ve seen a lot of great pitch decks over the years. So now, we’ve chosen key elements from all the best ones and combined them into an investor pitch deck template  for you to download now and use to build a great investor deck for your business.

Building a great pitch to investors – what to think about

1. Who are you pitching to?

One size does not fit all. Use our template to build a ‘master’ investor pitch deck containing all the slides you might need, then adapt your investment pitch deck to the audience every time you present.

For example, remove slides that may be too high level or obvious if you’re pitching to potential investors with good industry knowledge and add more emphasis to those areas you know they will want to grill you on.

2. How are you delivering your pitch to investors?

Think about how you’ll need to deliver the pitch. Will it be in person, online or sent by email? If you’re sending it via email keep it short and to the point but remember you won’t be there to talk alongside it, so ensure it’s comprehensible as a standalone asset. If it’s a one-to-one pitch, a far more detailed deck would be better to support an in-depth discussion about your business.

3. How should you structure your pitch deck?

Any pitch to investors should:

  • Demonstrate the problem that exists
  • Show how you can solve that problem and importantly why it’s worth solving
  • Prove why you can solve it better than anyone else

This is how your investment pitch deck structure should look:

  1. Company purpose
  2. Problem
  3. Solution
  4. Why now
  5. Market size
  6. Product
  7. Team
  8. Business model
  9. Competition
  10. Financials

Which pitch deck slides are most important to investors?

On average an investor will only spend 3m 44 seconds looking at your deck, so keep it short and snappy. The two investment pitch deck slides that receive the most attention are the financials (23 seconds) and the team structure (22 seconds).

This is a breakdown of the average amount of time spent per category viewed:

Categories Average amount of time spent viewed
Financials 23 seconds
Team 22 seconds
Competition 17 seconds
Why Now 16 seconds
Company Purpose 15 seconds
Business Model 15 seconds
Product 14 seconds
Market Size 13 seconds
Problem 11 seconds
Solution 10 seconds

This is not to say that the problem and the solution are unimportant – they are crucial to setting up the narrative, and the less time spent on them the better job you’ve done, as investors have quickly grasped the ‘why’ behind you businesses.

Not your first time pitching to investors?

If this isn’t your first fundraise, here are a couple of extra things to think about:

  1. Demonstrate how you have generated value for investors thus far: include a slide showing your traction and how your business has grown since your last round to give potential new investors confidence that you can hit your targets and deliver.
  2. Show how you listen to your customers: don’t just include a page of 5-star reviews. It’s important to show investors how you have incorporated customer feedback into your roadmap to improve your service/product.

10 of the most successful investment pitch decks

Still looking for inspiration? We’ve shortlisted our favourite pitch decks from companies that have successfully won over investors, many of which have gone on to become household names:

The key takeaway from this successful investment pitch deck is the simplicity of each slide with a maximum of three sections of content. Not only is this visually appealing for your audience, it also helps to complement your delivery, rather than distract from it. 

This pitch deck for investors successfully showcases the Beelinguapp and how it works. For example, slide 3 shows exactly what an app user would see when reading copy in two languages side by side. This is a really useful way for investors to see the product that they will potentially invest in. We also like the way it includes details of its existing investors, a sign of further endorsement.

The pitch deck from Contently uses big bold copy to get its message across. We particularly like the way it clearly sets out its ‘near-term opportunity’ and ultimate ‘goal’ on slide 10 to, ‘own the entire value chain’.

Off the back of this pitch deck for investors, Contently secured $9M in funding in 2014.

With this pitch deck, Dropbox effectively articulated the problem it was solving to investors, using simple visuals to bring it all to life. We particularly like the competitor comparison table which shows clearly where Dropbox is succeeding where others aren’t.

Complex technology businesses can be hard to describe in simple terms, especially when presenting under pressure to potential investors. Nylas makes great use of an easy-to-understand flow chart example to show how it ‘powers productivity in the world’s best companies’.

This investment pitch deck shows how you can effectively demonstrate a business’ market opportunity and how it’s taking advantage of a growing global trend. We really like the way it dramatises the story of the growing creator economy, ‘We’re at the beginning of the biggest creative explosion and the largest shift of economic empowerment in our lifetime.’

With this pitch to investors, Peloton clearly demonstrates what it is not, helping to show how it is distinctly different from other fitness brands. This pitch deck also perfectly encapsulates Peloton’s infectiously positive brand positioning ‘a transformative experience so you show up as your full self all day long’.

In just one slide, Softr articulates what it does, we ‘turn this into this’. It also shows its product in action using an embedded video with motivational-feel music to make investors sit up and pay attention. We also like the use of different colours to make certain words and phrases pop. 

This is a great example of putting your audience in the customer’s shoes. Using a cut-throat statement to articulate the problem ‘travel guides suck’, along with travel photography, it takes investors on the journey of a user and brings TouristEye to life. This investment pitch deck was so successful, Lonely Planet acquired the business in 2013.

Uber used a textbook pitch deck formula and it worked. The customer pain point and solution are presented upfront so the investor understands Uber’s strong potential before going into details of the business, market opportunity and financials. Following Uber’s success, this investment pitch deck has become a helpful resource for founders everywhere.

More investment pitch deck resources

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