What goes on slide zero?

It may seem like your business plan pitch starts with your first slide (hopefully your team slide), but it doesn’t.

Before slide one comes slide zero. That’s everything you and your audience discuss from the moment you say hello until the first point on your first slide. What should you cover on slide zero?

Prove you weren’t born in a barn. Meaning, demonstrate your social skills. As you walk down the hall, wait for the rest of the team, or set up your slide show, ask an insightful question, with a follow-up to show you were listening.

Apply your super sleuthing skills. During the banter, try to ferret out a little information that could be helpful to your pitch. Maybe learn about the roles or relevant investment experiences of the various audience members. Or even find a mutual friend as a way to build their confidence in you.

Eeease your way into the pitch. As you get ready to start going through your slides, make a natural transition. Explain what you’ll be talking about (i.e. your elevator pitch), and explain the genesis of the project. Before you get your game face on, show them what makes you tick – what you were doing before, how you came up with this plan, and why you are so excited about it. A little insight into your motives and passion can go a long way, just as long as you follow it up with tight logic and a compelling story.

…And now, let’s turn to slide one…


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