What documents do you need to impress investors?
Updated: Sep 1
One Pager, Teaser, Read Deck, and Pitch Deck – if you want to inspire investors for your startup such that they are willing to invest money – you need a brilliant idea, and you also have to stage it skillfully. In practice, various types of company presentations have proven their worth. We have summarized the most common ones for you, and show you what is essential for a winning strategy.
One Pager, Teaser, Read Deck and Pitch Deck, or Investment Memo – it all comes down to this…
Generally speaking, there is a distinction between presentations that you send to potential prospects and those with which you present your idea in person. As you can imagine, the documents you send and that are read without you being present need to contain more information and explanations. After all, you are not there to answer questions or clarify ambiguities. This is not the case with your pitch deck, this document is the central point around which everything revolves, and you will typically pitch that in person or via video presentation. Generally, the following presentations and documents are distinguished as such:
The One Pager is used to give an initial overview of your business idea. This is about presenting the essential points in a crisp and compact way.
The Teaser is a short and meaningful summary of your business idea, but also gives the first insight into how it works, and shows both your background and that of your team.
The Read Deck is the presentation with which you present your business idea in a self-explanatory and detailed way. In addition to the information mentioned so far, you also present details about the market situation, the mode of operation, and your business model in written form.
However, as a rule, you only send a read deck if it is explicitly requested.
If you have the opportunity to pitch directly, i.e. to present your business idea in person on-site or online, you use a pitch deck. This is very similar to the read deck, but has one major difference: The Pitch Deck must be substantive and precise. However, there will be much less information presented on the slides, as you will be presenting it - correctly guessed - in person during the pitch.
So, a fundamental difference between the One Pager, Teaser, Read Deck and Pitch Deck is that the first three must be self-explanatory since you are sending them to potential business partners or investors.
This is because you can't directly give further explanations or answer questions. So it is essential that these documents are designed in such a way that it can be immediately understood what they are about. The pitch deck, on the other hand, is different. It visually presents what you have said, and provides your audience with an anchor point to which they will return repeatedly while listening to your pitch.
Pro tip: Don't worry if you don't know what type of presentation to use. Investors or business partners usually explicitly indicate which document they expect, and to what extent.
Another document that we would like to mention here is the investment memorandum. This is a bit out of the ordinary in that it only comes into play when you already have a clear yes to the financing and it is a matter of discussing the fundamentals of the investment. We mentioned this one for completeness.
In the following, we will go through the step of individual presentations by step and show you what is important. But one thing in advance: For the professional design of these documents, you need some time. Time that you probably don't have, especially at the beginning, and that costs you above all. Because even though it's your business, your time is not free. Every hour you invest in creating presentations is an hour you can't charge your clients for. We speak from experience and can help you with our team. Contact us without obligation to see how we can support you!
How to write a crisp & compact One Pager
With a One Pager you present your business idea in a crisp and compact way. It's about showing potential investors or stakeholders that you and your idea exist. It is the first approach to see if there is interest in funding. Therefore, it is immensely important that your one-pager makes a top impression. And when we write top impression, we mean it!
Information your One Pager should contain
We know how difficult it is to fit a business idea on one page. But there is some help, a kind of framework, that we would like to provide you with here. This information should be included in your One Pager if you want to make a strong impression:
Company name or your name & logo and slogan
USP or unique selling proposition
Market overview & target group
Pro tip: In PowerPoint, you can easily convert the slides to a Din A 4 format under "Design" and "Custom slide size", and thus create the optimal layout for a One Pager.
As you can see, a One Pager contains a lot of details and - typed correctly - they all need to fit on a single A4 page. It is best to work with illustration programs, graphics, and highlighting.
In no case should the One Pager be a Word document that is typed from top to bottom in font size 10. After all, your goal is to create such an impression with this single sheet that the recipient of the document will immediately send you a message or call you. For this, your one pager must have a lot to offer!
The benefits (and challenges) of a One Pager
A one pager has some plus points, however, it also has one major minus The main challenge is that the One Pager must be short and compact, and there is only room for a few details so an intelligent reduction to the most important points is necessary. The main benefit is that this document provides a great one page overview that is brief and easy to digest. A well-crafted One Pager will undoubtedly be respected by investors.
Conclusion One Pager
If you need professional support in creating your One Pager, we will be happy to help you. Based on our years of experience, we know what is important for one-pagers and how to make a lasting impression with your one pager. Contact us without obligation and we will get in touch with you to discuss how we can best support you in the implementation of your one-pager.
How to write a short and meaningful Teaser?
With the teaser you want to arouse curiosity. You can do this by providing a short but meaningful overview of your business idea and your company. Just enough to make you want to know more, but still short enough not to scare away busy people. Unlike the one pager, the teaser allows you to provide more information and present your idea in more detail.
The following content should not be missing from your teaser:
Company name or your name & logo and slogan.
Problem & solution overview
Product & how your idea works, including the USP
Target group & market with statistics and/or graphics
Roadmap, timeline & investment
Team & contact details
A teaser has an average of five to seven slides. This is an approximate guideline that can vary depending on your business idea. We know this is a huge challenge, especially for startups, as you have a wealth of information, data, and facts to share with potential stakeholders. If you are not sure how much time the recipients of your presentation will spend reading your document, but want to offer more content than just a one pager, a teaser is the optimal choice.
Pro tip: Create the read deck first and then get the relevant information for your teaser from it. Reduce the action titles, and focus on the key messages.
The teaser, due to its brevity, will, unfortunately, lack in-depth information. However, the teaser does have two main advantages:
The teaser includes all relevant information in a condensed form.
It shows a comprehensive picture of the business idea.
As you have seen, it is important that your teaser is short and meaningful. This is a task we are happy to help you with. From reviewing the content to design and layout, or full design, anything is possible. Based on our experience, we can offer you a customized solution that fits you and your business idea perfectly. Send us a message and we'll get back to you for a no-obligation consultation!
How to create a self-explanatory and detailed Read Deck?
A Read Deck, like the One Pager and the Teaser, needs to be self-explanatory. But with the Read Deck you do have scope to go into further detail. Hence the name "read". You send the read deck to prospects who you assume will take the time to look through a multi-page presentation. Ideally, your recipients will be motivated enough to view a more comprehensive presentation of your business idea on their own, without your help and in your absence.
Information that your read deck should contain
To ensure that your Read Deck is well received by potential investors and entrepreneurs, the following content should not be missing:
Company name or your name & logo and slogan
Vision and mission behind your idea
Problem you are solving with your product or service, or the opportunity you see in the market based on the status quo
Solution that you provide
Product with which you make the solution possible, also in detail
Functionality with which you describe how your product is used to solve the problem
Market potential you see for your product
USP, which makes your product unique and with which you can secure a competitive advantage.
Business model, showing how you will make money with your idea
Market entry and customer acquisition strategies that you will use to conquer the market
Team you work with and the expertise you bring to the table
Contact details through which you can be reached
A read deck is 15 to 17 slides in length. This is an approximate guideline that has evolved over time and is based on our experience.
Pro tip: Because of its detailed structure, the Read Deck is the perfect basis for all other presentations, from Pitch Deck to Teaser to One Pager.
The benefits (and challenges) of a Read Deck
Of all the presentations, the Read Deck is the one with the most detail. It is the optimal opportunity to present your business idea in more depth.
Relatively long and therefore time-consuming to both design and read.
Conclusion Read Deck
We know from experience that creating a good Read Deck takes a lot of time. Time that you may not have in the early stages of your business. We can give you a hand and help you with the creation of your Read Deck. Depending on what kind of help you need, we can take care of the design or content of your Read Deck, or we can create a Read Deck from scratch for you. Just contact us. We will be happy to discuss with you in a call what kind of support is best for you.
How to write a substantive and precise Pitch Deck?
Now we come to the nonplus ultra of startup business presentations: the pitch deck. The Pitch Deck must be substantial, precise and contain all relevant information.
Pitch Deck and Read Deck are similar in both scope and content, but there is a serious difference. While the Read Deck is self-explanatory since you are not on site to answer questions, the Pitch Deck shows the most important facts and you do the rest. This means that in the Pitch Deck you have much less content per slide, since in your pitch you present your idea, give more information, go into details, and of course answer questions directly. The Pitch Deck comes alive from you and your presentation!
What does your Pitch Deck need to contain?
The pitch deck is about presenting the key messages in the form of keywords, bullet points, and visuals in a way that supports your spoken words. We recommend that you prepare the following content for the Pitch Deck (if you start with the Read Deck, you will already have these details in the prepared form):
Company name or your name & logo and slogan
Vision and mission
Problem or opportunity
Strategies for market entry and customer acquisition
In terms of length, the Pitch Deck is similar to the Read Deck, with around 17 slides you are well on your way. On average, you can expect to speak for just under two minutes per slide. With 17 slides, this results in a speaking time of around 30 to 35 minutes. Some slides will go faster, others you will probably need more time. This time does not include answering questions. As you can see, it is tremendously important to be focused and to the point in getting your message across in your presentation. You can, of course, use the Read Deck slides as a base and present the content in the form of lists, bullet points and keywords.
Since you are presenting the document directly to potential investors, you can get by with less content on the slides.
Pro tip: Use the Read Deck as a starting point for your pitch deck. Shorten the action titles and reduce the content on the individual slides to bullet points. That way, you've created your pitch deck with little effort!
The benefits (and challenges) of the Pitch Deck
A pitch deck is a perfect foundation for your pitch.
You can go in-depth and present a comprehensive picture of your company.
Reducing the content to the key messages and bullet points needs to be done thoughtfully and can be time-consuming.
Conclusion Pitch Deck
Your pitch has to sit! There is no way around it. Your goal is to be well prepared for the start and to convince potential investors not only of your business idea but also that you are the right person to implement it and turn it into a profit. Ideally, you should have prepared your pitch deck on the basis of the read deck and thus already have all the important and relevant details well prepared. If this is not yet the case, we will be happy to help you. You can also let us help you with the creation and design of your pitch deck. Send us a non-binding request and we will get in touch with you.
Constructing a comprehensive and in-depth Investment Memorandum
An Investment Memorandum can be thought of as an extended Read Deck, it is the portrait of your company, the picture with which you present your idea in detail. With this document, you go even deeper, because you already know that investors are interested in working with you.
Show your business idea in detail by listing all the important key figures, presenting the past and future development on the basis of a timeline, going into detail about the development of the market, and preparing possible investment options. If you have a business plan, then this forms the best basis.
Professional tip 1: Never send an investment memorandum to potential business partners without being asked, because you are giving away a lot of details and information, including sensitive data and figures.
In many cases, an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) is signed in advance. Be aware that you are providing a lot of confidential information with the investment memorandum. After all, the document is used as a basis for due diligence!
Information your investment memorandum should contain
In addition to the information in the Read Deck, there is a range of other details that are important to your funders and investors, such as:
Funding and different models of funding as a basis for discussion
Use of invested financial resources to achieve maximum profit
Success projections and revenue trends you are aiming for
Strengths and weaknesses are backed up with a SWOT analysis or similar tools.
It is important that you are honest and transparent. High-flown forecasts of success and exaggerated representations are short-lived in the business world. Even if you're the expert on your idea, that doesn't mean the people you're providing the investment memorandum to are clueless. They may not be as deeply involved as you, but they certainly bring plenty of business understanding to the table. Honestly list strengths and weaknesses and also point out potential risks. By outlining ways you will deal with them, you show that you are well prepared and that your business idea has a sword and a shield!
Due to the amount of information, a strong investment memorandum can easily have up to 70 slides or even more. This is also the reason why this document is only used when your counterpart shows a clear interest in financial participation.
Pro tip 2: Before you jump straight into the investment memorandum, it's best to wait and see what your future investors want and need from the document.
The benefits (and challenges) of an Investment Memorandum
This document is extensive and detailed, plus it includes all the metrics that are critical to evaluating your business idea. It is a suitable basic document for concrete investment negotiations.
Due to its volume, both its creation and presentation are time-consuming and labor-intensive.
Conclusion Investment Memorandum
A good investment memorandum is extensive and therefore a time-consuming process. You are allowed to really go into depth here and prepare lots of figures, forecasts and statistics. Since this is strictly confidential data, think carefully about who has access to this document. It may even be advisable to have an NDA signed in advance.
If you would like assistance in preparing your investment memorandum, contact us for a no-obligation consultation. We will be happy to help you!
Are you ready for your professional pitch deck?
If you are looking for potential investors for your startup, a professional pitch deck is key. The reality is, that only about 1% of all entrepreneurs manage to get funded. Increase your chances of getting an investment with professionally prepared documents in the form of a pitch deck, one pager, teaser and read deck. Don't miss this opportunity, and invest time and energy in creating your presentation materials.
If you don't want to (or can't) spend this time, we will be happy to help you. With our modular Building Kit we work from long to short, from Read Deck to Pitch Deck to Teaser and One Pager. Since no two business ideas are alike, we customize this process to your business idea and requirements. In addition, the documents evolve as we work together. This creates a dynamic process, at the end of which you will receive a selection of the required presentations and documents from us. On request, we also offer pitch coaching, in which we work with you to prepare the perfect pitch for your business idea.
Are you curious? Then contact us!