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Throw Away the Slide Template... Please!

Almost everybody uses some variation of Guy Kawasaki's 10-slide pitch deck. They teach the basics at every accelerator, incubator, b-school, and every other hack-a-thon or bootcamp you can imagine. You know:

  1. Title Slide

  2. The Big Problem

  3. The Specific Problem

  4. The Generic Solution

  5. Your Great Solution and Secret Sauce

  6. How It Works and Looks

  7. Your Model (How You Make Money)

  8. Your Projections (How Long It'll Take to Make a Profit/Financials)

  9. The Management Team

  10. The Ask

That's the template, the outline, the meat and potatoes (and the bones) of a complete pitch. Got it?? OK, now forget it!!!

I never again want to see a slide with a headline, "The Problem," "Our Solution," or "Our Competitive Advantage." Those headlines don't tell me anything, they're not adding anything, and they're surely not memorable in any way.

Uniform used these slides (see a few below) as part of a pitch to raise $28mm (see Let's take a closer look...

1. Architectures Get In The Way is the problem, but this headline tells us exactly what the problem is within a second of seeing the slide.

2. Composable business means creating an organization made from interchangeable building blocks is the solution. And more than that, it creates a whole new category of software solutions, seemingly specific to Uniform. Brilliant because it kills two birds in one fell swoop (mixed metaphor, lol).

3. What it means to be truly composable details the benefits to the buyer and explains WIIFM - what's in it for me?

Now that you're off to a good start, go on to tell the rest of your story in this way - using your headlines to BLUF (bottom line up front) the take-aways for your audience. And never let me see another slide titled "Our Management."

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