Posted on
November 16, 2020
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4
min read

Creating a Pitch Deck: DIY vs Employing a Design Agency

Julian Droste
Founder, Digital Marketer & SEO

Did you know that 77 percent of entrepreneurs rely on personal savings to fund their businesses? Or that a third of small businesses begin with an initial investment of less than $5,000? Yet, the average company needs a minimum of $10,000 to launch.

Exacerbating these matters is the fact that just 0.05 percent of startups raise venture capital. Of course, you understand the importance of attracting new funding sources. And since you're reading this article, you acknowledge the vital importance of a fantastic pitch deck.

That said, knowing whether to do it yourself or hire a design agency can prove confusing. To help you sort out what's right for your company, keep reading for everything you need to know about creating a pitch deck.

Creating a Pitch Deck 101

Let's assume you've decided it's time for funding. How will you raise it? It's essential to start with the basics.

For example, are you thinking about business concept needs or operating expenses? How about planning for funds or a go-to-market strategy? Whatever your starting point, you need to have a thorough game plan before moving forward with your goals.

After all, you want to have a pitch deck that you can feel proud of, whether you opt for a design agency's expertise or the help of a pitch deck template.

Assessing the Pros and Cons of Different Pitch Deck Options

To rank which pitch deck options are best for you, let's get on the same page regarding the factors you must consider. They include:

  • Time investment
  • Pricing
  • Effectiveness
  • Quality of design

Let's take a closer look at each of these factors and how they impact your company's bottom line and fundraising options.

Time Investment

As a business owner, you're well-acquainted with the fact that time is money. What's more, your time is worth extra because of all you must do each day. To say that you've got a limited amount of hours per day remains an understatement.

After all, you've got countless responsibilities, from making company plans and managing team members to networking with investors and somehow managing to fit in a little leisure time, eating time, and sleeping time.

Let's face it. Your plate is full!

When it comes to different strategies for creating a pitch deck, you need a clear understanding of how much time you'll need to invest. That's why we've made time investment one of our most important evaluation factors.

Pricing

The bottom line remains one of your most essential concerns when designing an effective pitch deck. If you have limited funds, you'll need to keep a close eye on your budget. After all, you don't want expenses to get out of control.

For this reason, we've grouped different pitch deck strategies into three tiers. These tiers include low cost, medium cost, and high cost. How did we organize these tiers?

Low-cost options fall below the $500 price tag. Medium range services fall within the range of $500 to $2,000, and high-cost services come in at between $2,000 to $5,000 or more.

Effectiveness

Of course, no amount of time investment or money is worth it unless your pitch deck proves highly useful. After all, life as an entrepreneur is all about results.

A pitch deck must convey what your company stands for. It must also explain why your enterprise represents a compelling opportunity for a potential investor. How you communicate this message will vary depending on your audience.

When it comes to measuring the effectiveness of a pitch deck, here are some questions to consider:

  • Is all of the information a potential investor needs to make a favorable decision in this pitch deck?
  • Does the pitch deck compel the reader to invest?
  • Is the pitch clear and easy to follow?
  • Does it look and sound professional?

As you go through each of these questions, you'll quickly determine whether your pitch deck is effective or falls short.

Quality of Design

You'll also need to evaluate your company's pitch deck in terms of design quality. Make sure that your investor deck appears well-designed, professional, and appealing. That way, you'll increase your chances of success.

Besides making an excellent first impression, you also want to avoid detracting from your company and its message with a less-than-stellar pitch deck. After all, a bad pitch deck design will detract from your company's reputation, which is the last thing you need.

No matter how great your company is, if you don't effectively convey its positive attributes through the quality of your pitch deck's design, you're in trouble. In other words, you'll be disappointed by the outcome.

Pitch Deck Design Options

Now that we've explored the criteria that you must consider when evaluating the best pitch deck design for your enterprise, let's dive into your options.

These include:

  • A DIY pitch deck
  • Use of a template
  • Pay-by-slide design home
  • General designer contractor
  • Pitch content contractor/coach
  • Pitch deck design specialist
  • Big marketing and branding house

What are the pros and cons of each of these options, and which one is right for you? Let's explore each of these routes further so that you have a firm grasp of what's best for funding your company's next endeavor.

A DIY Pitch Deck

It makes sense to start with the most common type of pitch deck out there, the do-it-yourself option. Many entrepreneurs assemble their own pitch decks to economize. But is this the best option?

Here are some things you'll need to keep in mind. The DIY option represents your cheapest yet most time-consuming choice. It's also fraught with plenty of pitfalls.

Many business owners complete one for little to no cost apart from purchasing a few stock photos. Yet, you'll end up very time-poor with this option.

In general, a DIY pitch deck takes between 50 and 100 or more hours to complete. If you've got the time to invest in this approach, we've got the resources to help you. These resources include the ideal pitch deck template for your current needs.

That said, you'll still need to start from scratch when it comes to many aspects of the process.

For whom do we recommend this option? Those with a keen eye for design. You should also feel confident assembling a pitch deck.

If these skills fall outside your purview, you must ask yourself this. Does it make sense to invest so much into learning the process? After some thought, you'll likely find it makes more sense to work with professionals.

Our final recommendation? If you're a technical founder, a first-time founder, or have limited design skills, leave pitch design to the professionals. You'll find the time it saves you well worth the extra monetary investment.

Use of a Template

For those who feel confident about their abilities, using a template will save you plenty of time. Many of these templates are floating around the internet. If you'd like the best results from a tried and true product, however, go here.

What are the cons of using a template? For starters, they don't provide much in the way of direction. So, if you're at a loss when it comes to how to craft this document, you'll likely feel overwhelmed.

Pay-by-Slide Design Home

The pay-by-slide design concept is one that's grown in popularity in recent years. Why? Because of its inherent affordability.

In our opinion, it's a fantastic option for an entrepreneur with a robust grasp of the story, flow, and content of a pitch deck. Bear in mind, however, that you'll need to invest a significant amount of time into its assemblage.

General Designer Contractor

What if you've reached this point in the article and realize your design skills are lacking? If that's the case, don't despair! Instead, choose to use a contract designer to design your pitch deck.

Again, by allocating specific steps in the process, you'll save money while still enjoying a professional finished product. That said, expect no assistance when it comes to messaging and story.

Pitch Content Contractor or Coach

Very recently, the services of pitch content contractors or coaches have come on the scene. They offer startup founders assistance with the funding they seek. Some provide coaching sessions, while others limit themselves to basic feedback.  

That said, they do not handle design work. So, don't expect any help when it comes to the aesthetic appeal of your final product.

Pitch Deck Design Specialist

A pitch deck design specialist can handle the visual appeal for those who feel competent when it comes to flow and story line. These highly experienced individuals can expertly pull a document together, providing the perfect finishing touches.

How much does it cost to work with one of these individuals? Generally, between $2,000 and $4,000. Consider working with a pitch deck design specialist if you know your deck content is superb, but you're still not enjoying the success you hoped to see.

Big Marketing and Branding House

If cost is no option, then save time and hassle by going with a major marketing and branding house. They provide full services when it comes to design, content, and more.

That said, be prepared to get locked into a monthly project or long-term contract for these services. Despite the expense and required commitment, there's no better way to ensure your pitch deck leads to robust investments.

Learn more about how to build a winning pitch deck.

Get Your Pitch Deck Needs Covered in One Place

No matter which route you choose to go when it comes to a pitch deck design, we can help. From pitch deck templates to pitch deck design service needs, we've got you covered.

Contact our design agency today to discuss your pitch deck design needs and how we can help facilitate creating a document that proves highly effective while staying within your budgetary and time investment constraints.

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Julian Droste
Founder, Digital Marketer & SEO

Writer, content producer and SEO Julian Droste is the author and father of our entrepreneur-helping blog and website. Since the beginning of 2015, Julian has created over 400+ articles about a wide range of topics e.g., math, biology, chemistry, history, engineering, and many more.

His passion for entrepreneurship, presentations, and speeches led him to basetemplates where he can share his experience in building a startup with future entrepreneurs.

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