Wow Them with Your Fast Pitch

A well-written business plan will help you establish your small business marketing strategy and hopefully open the door to a banker or investor who agrees to a meeting to hear your pitch. Make it fast if you want to get to first base!

OK, obviously that analogy doesn’t work… the pitcher and the base runner are on opposing teams. I know. sigh!

Anyway,  Guy Kawasaki, formerly of Apple Computers, is a venture capitalist who’s been on the receiving end of too many pitches. He has a simple framework for pitching fast without blowing it. I respectfully recap his plan here because he is so right on!

Kawasaki’s 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint Presentations.

Your PowerPoint presentation should only have 10 slides,

Which you are able to present in 20 minutes,

And each slide should contain no font smaller than 30 pt.

• Your 10 slides should be a recap of your Business Plan’s Executive Summary and be presented in this order.

1. The Problem that the market/customer faces

2. Your Solution to alleviate this problem through your product or service

3. Business model

4. Underlying magic/technology behind your product/service

5. Marketing and sales strategy

6. Competition you’ll face and how you’ll beat it.

7. Your Management Team

8. Projections and milestones for your new company

9. Timeline to achieve your projections

10. Summary and “the ask.”

• 20 minutes. “In a perfect world, you give your pitch in 20 minutes, and you have forty minutes left for discussion,” Kawasaki says.

• 30-pt font. When you cram as much text as possible onto your slide in 10-pt type, you tend to read it.“As soon as the audience figures out you’re reading, it reads ahead of you because it can read faster than you can speak. The result is that you and the audience are out of synch.”

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