I’ve been posting recently about the slides you’ll need to pitch your business plan effectively. But some of the most important slides won’t be part of your starting lineup: Backup slides.
A presentation is like a new business – it’s very difficult to predict what will happen, so in order to succeed, you must be able to roll with the punches. Backup slides make that easier.
You can develop some backup slides before you start to get feedback, by guessing which issues audience members may have questions about, that are not covered in the body of your presentation. You’ll also identify opportunities to create backup slides as you begin to pitch. Every time you give a presentation, you’ll learn something that can make you better the next time. And if you build good backup slides, you’ll be able to respond to audience concerns or questions with clear, concise answers – and minimal stress. Here are a few topics your backup slides may cover:
- Market research results
- Feedback from initial customers
- Press clippings
- Profiles of key competitors
- Primary operations of the business
- Organization charts
- Job descriptions for key hires
- Resumes of employees
- List of prospective partners, suppliers, distributors and/or customers
- Access to closed beta sites or prototypes
- Profiles of comparable companies that support your contentions
- Letters of intent from major accounts