I applied to the Open Angel Forum (OAF) for Philadelphia the other day. It was a good excercise whether or not I get accepted as it got me constructively thinking about some things I haven’t spent much time on so far. There were questions regarding revenue, amount of funding and also they asked for slides for your presentation that you would give at OAF. I’m gonna focus this post on the slides which are the beginnings of my pitch deck.
I have read a few blog posts and articles about pitch decks but it isn’t something I focused on much before the OAF application. There are two principles that stood out to me from my research: (1) Keep it short, under 10 slides (2) Give a good presentation. I’m obviously being an ass with (2) though I don’t think there’s much difference between presenting to investors and presenting to any other group. I’m no expert in giving talks but luckily I’m naturally a good speaker, have a pretty intuitive grasp of how to keep people interested and some experience. I’ve given a number of presentations over the years in a diverse set of situations: scientific presentations, classroom lectures, bid presentations for conferences, I have told my “personal story” on a few occasions to groups, talked to kids in treatment facilities and detention centers and a few other things too. Since it is somewhat intuitive to me, I might not be able to communicate my method very well but I’ll try. Basically, I decide what I am really trying to communicate, what information or emotion do I want to plant inside your audience’s heads. Then I make sure I know who the audience is going to be (to the best of my ability). Sometimes the second part is difficult, but I just try my best. After that it gets individualized to each presentation, not sure if I could give any general rules that I follow. Lemme think…humor is good…don’t talk down to people…practice the talk a whole bunch…try to anticipate questions I might receive and know how to answer them…simple is always better…try to imagine listening to the talk, not just giving it…blah blah blah.
Ok, let’s move onto THIS presentation.
What idea am I trying to communicate? I am trying to convey a multi-faceted idea, it’s kinda a story. I first want to show the market for live music in the US is huge, then that this market is currently not well serviced by the internet and finally Feistie.com will fix this problem. Who is my audience? The audience at OAF and essentially any other place I give this presentation will be potential angel investors. In particular, I want to receive funding from someone that has previous success as an entrepreneur in a tech startup.
This presentation is a work in progress, but here’s my current plan. I’m going to show a slide with the dollar values of the US market for Live Music – $23 Billion, Movies – $22 Billion, and Restaurants – $144 Billion followed by the Alexa traffic rankings of the top sites in those markets Ticketmaster.com (#195), IMDB.com (#26) and Yelp.com (#44). I’m still debating whether to speak about the market for movies in general which includes rentals and video sales, or the smaller movie theater market ($13 Billion). In the latter, one could argue that RottenTomatoes.com would be the proper site to show and it only has a ranking of #340 or Fandango.com ranked #253. I wanted to keep this to one slide, maybe i’ll show the top ranking sites relevant to each industry. One might also argue that I should include YouTube.com in the music category, but I feel it is much more general than that, so to look at it’s super-high ranking and think that ruins this story isn’t accurate. For instance, I watch movie trailers on YouTube and I think I’m not in the minority.
Next slide will show a poll that I conducted asking respondents “How did you hear about the last concert you attended.” It is a multiple choice poll with a long list of choices. The results so far show that around 55% of people still found out through “word-of-mouth.” This poll is less than scientific but I at least made it so you only get one vote per IP address. I don’t think anyone proxy’d up and blasted it with a ton of votes. :) How I see the concert discovery landscape is that there are a small set of impassioned souls who dig through the blogs and local listing sites to find out about upcoming shows. From there things proceed via the age old method of word of mouth. The story I want to tell with this poll is that there are these two types of potential users and neither group is well served by the current situation. The impassioned ones have to spend tons of time searching a fractured internet landscape, their job could be much easier if there was a great centralized resource. And the receivers of the the word-of-mouth recommendations are essentially at the whim of their friends and simply pure chance. They often miss out on the shows they want to see most.
The final chapter is showing how Feistie solves this problem. Feistie will give the impassioned souls the tools and a platform to get their thoughts out to a large number of people and give the passive concert attendees a nice place where they can find easy to use listings and recommendations along with a slew of videos to watch til their heart is content. I start to show this through a single slide which has a bulleted list titled “What makes Feistie different?” This list will be
- Reviews – similar paradigm to Yelp
- Videos – easy for any user to embed
- Incentives – build reputation by contributing
- User Community – No large social network currently exists for music.
Then I will give a demo of the website. Following the demo will be a single slide about revenue and one more describing a few details of the investment opportunity: how much I want to raise ($150,00), the post-money valuation ($1,150,000) and a really brief description of what I intend to do with the money (Hire talent – UX, Biz Management, office space, marketing).
There you have it, the “alpha” version of my pitch deck. I think I will add one slide in the beginning describing who I am. The fact that I have a Ph.D. in physics probably won’t hurt. I also am a musician and actually have a ton of experience putting on events and working with sizable conventions.
I would love to hear comments/suggestions about this pitch deck. I’m in the beginning days of a 14 day push to launch an alpha version of Feistie, so be on the lookout!
P.S. I did a little re-design of the landing page.