Pitching skills - Secret to successful startup fundraising
In the business world, pitching (presentation to raise capital) is the brief introduction of business ideas, plans and situation to convince capitalists to invest in your startup. This is a fundamental goal that startups need to accomplish if they want to sustain their businesses because without the capital, the startup's business idea may never get the chance to be realized and break into the market. It is, therefore, vital for a founder or a co-founder to have good pitching skills which will bring more growth opportunities for his/her business.
Pitching can take the form of an elevator pitch lasting for about 2 minutes or a pitch deck of 5-10 minutes, depending on the nature and context of the presentation. According to Ms. Mai Ho, venture partner at Hustle Fund, who oversees the activities of the firm in Vietnamese and Southeast Asian markets: "Only about 10% of startups are invited to have direct conversation with investors after their pitch decks".
So what makes the difference between the pitch deck made by the top 10% and the remaining 90% of startups?
In this article, we will give you some tips on how to prepare a winning pitch deck that will get you funded.
 
Let's simplify everything...
The first thing to consider is the length of the pitch deck. The presentation should be short (10-15 slides should suffice). The purpose is to make investors curious, interested and want to talk to you directly on your business. Moreover, investors can only give you a very short amount of time so keep your deck focused.
In terms of slide design, don't use fonts that are thin or look fancy. Make sure the slides are readable from afar. The font size should be at least 24. Use simple, intuitive charts because if the charts are too complicated, the audience will focus on studying them instead of listening to you. Insert your company logo, use highly descriptive words and attractive images to best provide investors with your target customers and product information.
Use simple, straightforward and understandable language when giving presentations. Avoid the overuse of terminology or jargon when describing your product/service because the investor may not come from your field. Explaining complex ideas in simple words will make your pitch more audience-friendly as well as prevent any misunderstanding from investors.
Simplification also means focusing on important information rather than diving too much into details. For example:
  • Important information: In what way can your business solution be better than others’ ones that are currently offered in the market?
  • Details: We will recruit 4 more technology developers to improve the product within the next 12 months.
And if the investor thinks you only need 2 developers, they can refuse to invest, let alone see you in person afterwards. Therefore, make the most of your time and only say what’s important. You should rehearse well before the big day and ask your family, friends and those who aren't in your field to listen and help you identify the major and leave out the minor.

Here are part 2 and 3, please visit:
Part 2:  http://startup.gov.vn/Pages/chi-tiet-tin-tuc.aspx?l=Tintucsukien&ItemID=321
Part 3:  http://startup.gov.vn/Pages/chi-tiet-tin-tuc.aspx?l=Tintucsukien&ItemID=322
 
Tác giả: Trần Hữu Hưng