How to please an investor (and not only). 10 mistakes when presenting a project

    Want to present as Steve Jobs? The art of presentations can be learned quite quickly. But at the first speech, consciousness gets confused, and the narrator repeats all the typical mistakes. I have compiled the most obvious ones. These are not tips from smart books, but a recent live experience like you. How to quickly make a presentation effective, and what gross errors should be avoided from the very beginning? With examples.


    The most common mistake of a novice speaker. It is very difficult to meet the allotted time. Regardless of the format, whether 7, 5, 3, 2 minutes - you need to train very actively so as not to go beyond. At serious presentations, the limits are strictly respected - you just have your microphone taken away, you can’t keep within 30 seconds if it is 5 minutes of the presentation, and 15 seconds if 2 minutes. It seems that 7 minutes is a lot, but even in such a generous limitation it is extremely difficult to meet. Try with a timer. If this is your first time, you will miss 2 minutes. To prevent this mistake, you need to drive the presentation with a stopwatch at home many, many times. Speaking honestly every word. Trying in front of others. A real presentation takes longer than a training presentation, so you need to fit in with a margin. Talking about a project in 3-5 minutes is harder than it sounds. And the most important thing about the project is often at the end.

    It was : Good afternoon. My name is Alexey and today I will tell you about the SkiAnline project, designed for extreme winter sports enthusiasts who want to share multimedia content ... ... our monetization scheme [sorry, your time is up]
    It has become : Hello. I’m Alexey, I represent SkisOnline - a service for snowboarders ... ... our monetization scheme is partnerships with sports brands and contextual advertising ...

    Simple abstracts

    Do not overload the presentation. In people (and especially in investors), ADD is an attention deficit disorder. No one will be able (and most importantly, will not) to focus on complex designs. The presentation should consist of simple abstracts. About how you read long texts only in exceptional cases, people listen carefully only when they know in advance what will be interesting. You have not had time to interest yet, so be simple. What, who, why, why. Question - answer, thesis - second - third. The presentation should be clear and clear.

    It was : a service for exchanging multimedia content for communities of extreme sports lovers.
    It has become : twitter for snowboarders

    Do not read from the slides

    There is nothing sadder than reading from a slide. Written on a slide - and so it is written on it, they will read it themselves, you are not on stage to voice the text. The slide and the story should complement each other, the text on the slide is needed for you to look at it for a second, remember what the slide is about, and tell it without looking. And for listeners, the slide helps to cling to the context if they are distracted, and have just focused their attention again. Pictures, numbers - yes. But the text is not for you. When reading from a slide, you don’t look at the audience, go astray, speak monotonously without passion, forget what else was in this slide.

    It was :Our advantages over competitors ... uh ... responsive user interface ... uh ... powerful news feed functionality ... uh ... the presence of a cat in the logo ... [forgot what I wanted to say, and the slide was calculated for 40 seconds]
    It became : Why will they use us ?! Our designers did not sleep at night and made a fantastically user-friendly interface - be sure to try it yourself! See what a juicy ribbon, you can drag photos from one profile to another. But everything fades against the background of the cat - this is a guarantee of our success.

    tell me a story

    This is probably from the books, but very important. You need to hook the audience. You can’t just list dry facts, it’s boring. Tell a story. How did you come up with the idea, or to whom and how it has already helped, something from the life of the project. History is a personal experience, it involves. Associate a third-party story with a project. A coherent story is always more interesting than a report.

    It was : Our service allows you to exchange messages with friends on a social network and others, taking into account the geographical coordinates of the current location.
    It became : Once I broke my leg, and there was no one to tell where I am. If I had Skis Online on my phone, I would write “broke my leg, help,” and all the skiers in a kilometer would see my message and come to the rescue

    Do not retell or correct

    It is unlikely that you will immediately be able to improvise, everyone somehow memorizes the text of the presentation. The worst thing about memorizing is trying to retell word for word. Then any mistake knocks you off the line and you panic try to return to the text, forgetting what you had to say. Up to the point that instead of the original version of the phrase you say another, and, having noticed this, correct yourself to the "correct" one. In a combat presentation, the correct option is the one you voiced (unless it is an actual mistake). They said “for skiers” instead of “snowboarders” - continue. This is not a reservation, but a different version of the phrase, do not correct it - it really spoils the impression of the presentation. To avoid this - memorize only the general scheme. What about a slide, what I want to talk about in it. Inside the slide - improvise on a given topic.

    It was : twitter for snowboarders;
    It became : facebook for skiers

    Be more simple

    There are people in the audience like you. Especially investors - they are generally great guys. Advanced, young, ordinary people. This is not a defense of a dissertation before professors; they do not want to hear complex logical connectives, literary introductory constructions, and immersion in details. Talk as if you are telling friends.

    It was : Three days ago, the database refused to be replicated and the service was unavailable for three hours, but the user data was saved and 90% was already transferred to the new storage.
    It became : Yesterday we got something back, but we quickly fixed it

    People do not read

    Nobody reads your slides. They look at pictures, but nobody reads texts. If they are longer than three words, and the slide has more than a few lines. Presentation slides should be many times thesis than a story, otherwise you can throw them away. A few very short statements in large print. No literary connectives, consider that you have a telegram, and each word costs 1000 rubles. And each character is 50 rubles. Each line is 5000. Well, you understand. Otherwise, there is no chance that someone will even read what you have written, people are lazy.

    Was : The intuitive user interface attracts people. In the news feed, you can drag pictures between profiles. The cat on the logo disposes to the service.
    It became : Clear interface. Dragging and dropping images. Cat.

    Set accents

    If the story is monotonous, you can fall asleep after the second slide. Even if you follow all other points, without the correct intonations and accents, the listener will lose the thread. People need pauses and voice accents on important information. Speak loudly, clearly, and be especially expressive where it matters.

    It was : Once I broke my leg, and there was no one to tell where I am. If I had SkisOnline on my phone, I would write “broke my leg, help”, and the skiers on the slope would rush to help.
    It became : Once I broke my leg, and there was no one to tell where I was. If I had SkisOnline (!) On my phone, I WRITTEN “broke my leg”, AND SKISS on the slope would RUN FOR HELP

    Tell people in the room

    You know what and why your service is for, but they are not. You live for a long time, and they never even skied. The most basic and unexpected things may not be understood. The application for helping snowboarders is a guide to the slopes, or a guide to medicine for injuries, or a call button for an evacuation helicopter, or it helps to communicate with friends, or an online store ... what is help? If the main leisure of the audience is not skiing, but poker, you need to very clearly explain all the basic principles of the project from scratch. In 3 minutes :). Talk more about what's interesting to a particular audience. Investors do not need your features, they need monetization, market size, promotion strategy, and development plans. And a clear understanding of why someone will use this. If you tell skiers, on the contrary, they need features, do not care about the business model,

    It was : It will help to learn how to get up on the edging, it will show where to ride the puff.
    It became : On the board it is very difficult to learn how to ride. A virtual trainer in the application will help beginners quickly learn the board. More experienced skiers have a problem - to find a place where to ride outside the resort, away from the crowd. The application will prompt such places.

    Joke and be recognizable

    Good ways to attract attention are a joke, immediacy, interactivity, provocation. Everyone has already mastered the slides with funny pictures and questions into the room, this is already boring (but better than without it). Be one step ahead. Show self-irony, do something bright during the presentation, tell us about how you can misuse your service. You don’t have to wave your hands and say “developers, developers, developers”. It is enough to tell how your service about skiline was found on request crap online. And put on a T-shirt on which you can then be found if there are questions after the presentation.

    It was : SkisOnline the first application for the query "ski android."
    It became :Skiing is the first ski-on-line application. And once we were found by request crap online.

    Be yourself

    Bonus item. It’s difficult to be yourself from excitement, but if you succeed, it is captivating. When the formality is not felt in the story, this is the best thing that will help win people over. Be yourself. More passion! Everyone will be interested if you are sincerely interested, and you believe in what you are doing.


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