In this episode we look at advice from Hyde Park Angels and Rob Go of NextView Ventures about how to best pitch your startup to VCs or angel investors. We also look at what you can learn from a story Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures tells about an entrepreneur who successfully convinced Fred to invest without a pitch deck at all.
Hyde Park Angels
As part of their educational series Hyde Park’s team created a great outline for the story your pitch should tell. The flow they suggest may be different than you would expect. But, it syncs with the way most venture capitalists and angel investors evaluate opportunities.
Rob Go – NextView Ventures
Rob Go and the NextView team have created two amazingly helpful templates for startup pitches: one for email and smaller meetings and a second for larger group settings (e.g. a demo day). I focus on the individual or small group format. Their format has tremendous versatility and does for startup pitches what responsive design and HTML 5 did for web sites. You can use content once and then adapt literally in the middle of a pitch to tailor it to your unique audience.
Here’s the PowerPoint template It’s hosted on DropBox. If you don’t want to sign in there to get it you can go to SlideShare.net (just to manage expectations, they released it on SlideShare as a single PDF, not in an editable format for PowerPoint or Keynote)
As a little extra bonus here are some early pitches from companies you probably know. (yes…I know. Some are probably bootlegged and incomplete, but they’re interesting none the less.)
Fred Wilson – Union Square Ventures
Do you even need a pitch? Sounds like heresy. No self-respecting entrepreneur would pitch a startup without a deck. Fred says you can and has the story to prove it.
Bonus Information about Rob Go
Rob describes himself this way: “Here’s a quick background on who I am: 1. My name is Rob, I live in Lexington, MA 2. I’m married and have two young daughters. My wife and I met in college at Duke University – Go Blue Devils! 3. We really love our church in Arlington, MA. It’s called Highrock and it’s a wonderful and vibrant community. Email me if you want to visit! 4. I grew up in the Philippines (ages 0-9) and Hong Kong (ages 9-17). 5. I am a cofounder of NextView Ventures, a seed stage investment firm focused on internet enabled innovation. I try to spend as much time as possible working with entrepreneurs and investing in businesses that are trying to solve important problems for everyday people. 6. The best way to reach me is by email: rob at nextviewventures dot com”