The DocSend team discovered that more and more successful slide decks have something in common: a very good summary slide. In this article, we take a look at some great examples from my ExamPaper Pitch Deck Teardown series and describe what should go on the slide.
Why you need an overview slide
As a startup founder, your business should be designed to fail as quickly as possible. In other words, if what you’re building is impossible, figure it out ASAP so you can get your life back, have a cocktail or two, and try to start another business. Essentially, a summary slide exists to make your fundraising journey fail quickly, making your investor decide not to invest.
I call it “failure” here, but what we’re really doing is preventing you or your potential investor from wasting time: There’s absolutely no point in calling a meeting and talking for 45 minutes if it turns out they’d never invest because your business is in the wrong phase.
Your summary slide should contain enough of the right information that can help an investor check the box that says, “Yes, this startup fits our investment proposition.” Specifically, it helps strengthen your business in time and place by helping investors find out how much you’re raising, what stage your business is in, and what your business actually does.
How do you set the tone?
Your summary slide will likely be your first or second slide. Many prefer the cover slider to be quite minimalistic, but it still needs a little lift. Personally, I like to think of the first two slides of a pitch deck as the backdrop, and by extension the first two slides together create the context for what’s to come.