The Founder of 8spaces.com will be speaking at Echelon Thailand 2015 on November 26-27 at Bangkok’s BITEC venue
Pitching is a tough gig. The accumulation of months of gruelling work, scalping, crafting and refining your product all boils down to those few minutes on stage; facing a group of stoic investors. So how do you make sure your pitch can woo over investors or at least make them receptive to a coffee invitation after?
Lais De Oliveira has had extensive experience working in the startup community. She is the Founder of Kuala Lumpur-based workspace-sharing platform 8spaces.co, Director of entrepreneurship platform Startup Grind and Community Ambassador of the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC).
Here are her four key pointers on creating a classy pitch.
There are many things that you may wish to include in your pitch deck, but if you have only five minutes, it is not practical to jam everything into a few slides. Instead, focus on the merits of your startup. Highlight the beauty of your startup and don’t talk about things that might not position your business well.
Getting the right content in your slides is crucial, but if they are scattered and unstructured, nobody can follow or understand what you are trying to communicate it. You need to figure out how to create a coherent narrative of your startup. Let your speech and slides flow in a smooth cadence, in a manner that the mind can intuitively digest and analyse. This also allows the audience to raise valid questions after your presentation.
3. Make your deck visually attractive
Designing the pitch deck well will allow it to complement your speech. If your audience is going to sit through 50 pitches in one day, you can be sure that their heads will be nodding off if every deck is going to look the same. So be creative and introduce some attractive visuals to your deck to let it stand out amongst the rest.
4. Body language
The fourth and probably most important factor of all is your body language. It has the potential to break or make your presentation regardless of how well you have nailed down the previous three key elements.
How you position yourself, project your voice and move onstage indicates whether you are confident, and confidence is a vital factor in convincing the investors. Why should they waste their time finding more about your startup if you are not even sure of it yourself?
Oliveira adds that if everything is not up to scratch, i.e. you have a barebones pitch deck, focus on three things – your team, your traction and your revenue.
Show the investors that you have assembled the best team to execute your plans, some traction figures to demonstrate that your business model has demonstrated validation, and any sort of revenue numbers or comparisons to show that it has a good business model.
Pitching is just the start — it’s where you will receive the most attention and potentially follow up with investors over coffee; where you can deliver more information and answer questions about your business. Ultimately, what you communicate in your pitch must showcase the best that you have got, but always remember to maintain consistency.
To cut a long story short, in Oliveira’s own words:
“You must make investors feel like they want to dig deeper into your startup and you better have more to tell them, after the pitch.”
Want to hear more from Lais De Oliveira? She will be speaking at Echelon Thailand this November 26 – 27. Join us as we connect the Mekong region through Bangkok, Thailand in two action-packed days. Learn more about Echelon Thailand here.
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