If you look on the “About” page on Marc Sparks’s personal website, you’ll see that Sparks is “the entrepreneurs’ entrepreneur”. After 34 years of entrepreneurialism Sparks decided it was time to write a book so that others might learn from his experiences–the successful ones and the distastrous ones.
Sparks says, “I feel like anyone reading [They Can’t Eat You] will learn much more from my unsuccessful ventures than they will learn from my successful ones. It’s easy for me to say…look at me, I started a software company and sold $200 million dollars a year worth of our product, but it’s much more educational for me to say…look at me, I started an insurance holding company out of my back bedroom and built it to nearly a billion dollar market cap and then lost it all in a ninety-day period of time.”
A couple years ago, an article was published on ireport.cnn.com wherein the writer detailed what a venture capitalist like Sparks wants from a presentation. The article at https://disqus.com/by/marcsparks/ says that while having a meaningful presentation is key to successfully selling a business idea to a venture capitalist, it’s just as important to think about what you’re putting into the presentation and what they can expect to get out of it.
Entrepreneurs’ time is valuable. Don’t waste it by including graphics that serve no purpose other than dressing up your presentation. This is the first step: to make sure that every visual you use makes a point. Secondly, you should outline what your data means and tell a legitimate story with it.
The third step is one we’ve all heard a hundred times: keep it simple. Having an overly-complicated presentation means you risk losing the investors’ attention. The final step is to be proud of product and get your whole team out to present.