The best pitch deck fails to deliver if your overall flow isn’t right. Flow has as much to do with the logical order of your slides as it has with a certain level of theatrical drama (tension/relieve) and your personal delivery.
Pitch Deck Guru Guy Kawasaki recommends ten slides in the following order:
- Your solution
- Business model
- Underlying magic/technology
- Marketing and sales
- Projections and milestones
- Status and timeline
- Summary and call to action
Personally I think this is as good an order as most. Some people like to talk about the team earlier (as investors invest into people first and foremost), others have specific slides talking about some intricate issues specific to the business they are pitching.
For me it comes down to a logical order (talk about the problem you’re solving first, then present the solution — the tension/relieve arch) and what feels good for you (I prefer a slide deck which is a bit off but comes with amazing in-person presence over a great slide deck and an uninspired presentation any day).
Note that you want to have “a bit” of drama in your deck — yet it’s not your school play where you try to outcompete Shakespeare. Don’t spend half an hour on building up tension and then, TADA!, present your solution. In the end it’s all about balance. :)
Oh — and practice, practice, practice. There’s no shortcut to delivering a great pitch.