By Rafael S.Lajeunesse, CEO and founder of ReachX
In the fast-paced world of fintech and investment, capturing the attention of potential investors is a critical step in securing the funding your startup needs to grow. One of the most effective tools in your arsenal is the teaser deck, a concise and compelling document that piques the interest of investors. Crafting an irresistible teaser deck is a fine art, and in this article, I’ll guide you through the key elements that should be included to create an investor’s dream.
Setting the Stage
Before delving into the specifics, it’s essential to understand the purpose of a teaser deck. This document serves as your startup’s first impression to potential investors, akin to the opening act of a play. Your teaser deck should pique curiosity and entice investors to learn more about your company. Here’s how to set the stage effectively:
- A captivating cover page: begin with an eye-catching cover page that includes your company’s name, logo, and a compelling tagline that encapsulates your value proposition in a sentence or two. Make a good first impression.
- Executive Summary: In a brief executive summary, introduce your startup, its core mission, and a snapshot of what makes your company special. Provide a taste of the exciting journey investors can embark on with your team.
Building Blocks of a Teaser Deck
The core of your teaser deck should be focused on a few key building blocks. Here’s a breakdown of what to include:
- Problem Statement: Start with a crisp, relatable problem statement. Investors need to understand the pain point your product or service addresses. Make it clear why your solution is needed in the market.
- Solution: Present Your Offering: This is where you introduce your product or service and explain how it effectively addresses the problem. Use visuals, diagrams, and concise language to illustrate the solution’s uniqueness.
- Market Opportunity: Investors want to know the size and growth potential of the market you’re entering. Include market research data and statistics to back up your claims. Demonstrating a big, untapped market opportunity is a powerful way to catch an investor’s attention.
- Competitive Analysis: Identify your competitors and explain how your startup differentiates itself from them. Show where you fit in the market landscape and why your approach is superior.
- Traction and Milestones: Highlight your accomplishments and milestones to date. Include data on user acquisition, revenue growth, partnerships, or any other relevant metrics. This demonstrates that you’re making tangible progress.
- Revenue Model: Clearly outline your revenue model. Explain how your company plans to make money, whether it’s through subscriptions, transaction fees, or any other revenue streams. Investors want to see a sustainable business model.
- Team: Showcase Your Talent: Introduce the key members of your team, highlighting their relevant experience and expertise. Investors not only invest in ideas but also in the people behind them. A talented and committed team is a compelling selling point.
- Funding Ask: Be transparent about how much funding you are seeking, what you plan to use it for, and what percentage of equity or debt you’re offering in return. Investors appreciate clarity and a well-defined funding strategy.
- Client testimonials: good to incorporate positive feedback from clients/users
- Roadmap: show the key milestones
- Funding uses: explain the use of capital
Visualisation and Storytelling
- Visuals: Use visuals including videos, charts, and graphs to simplify complex data and convey your message more effectively. A picture is worth a thousand words, and investors are more likely to grasp your ideas with visual aids.
- Storytelling: Weave a compelling narrative throughout your teaser deck. Take investors on a journey that highlights the problem, introduces your solution as the hero, and showcases the exciting opportunities ahead. Make it engaging and memorable.
Keep It Concise
Your teaser deck should be a concise document, ideally no longer than 10-15 slides. Investors receive numerous pitch decks, so brevity is your friend. Ensure every word and every visual serves a specific purpose and avoid overwhelming potential investors with excessive information.
Look at Examples for Inspiration
It’s also important to look at other teaser deck examples for inspiration for your own vision. Transport app Uber created its pitch deck back in 2008 and now has a market value of $101.15 billion.
Uber’s pitch deck began with examining the problems at the time with cabs such as how taxi-monopolies reduced the quality of service, there was no GPS coordination and most people relied on physically hailing a taxi. Uber’s digital hail service is then explained as well as its profitability enabled by clientele being automatically billed by adding their debit and credit cards to the app. Uber also outlined their user benefits, environmental benefits and progress to date at the time. Uber examined its place in the market and finished the pitch with their outlook of potential outcomes, with its “best outcome” being the one the company achieved: “Best case scenario – Becomes a market leader, $1b+ in yearly revenue.” You can view the full pitch deck on Insider, which has a library of other successful company’s teaser decks.
Closing Remarks: Call to Action
Finally, don’t forget to include a strong call to action. Encourage potential investors to reach out for further discussions, whether it’s a meeting, a phone call, or an email. Make it clear that you’re open to further engagement and that you’re excited to share more about your vision.
In conclusion, crafting a compelling teaser deck is an art that requires careful consideration of content, design, and storytelling. By following these guidelines, you’ll be well-equipped to create a teaser deck that captures the imagination of potential investors and entices them to take a closer look at your fintech or investment startup. Remember, the goal is to spark interest and initiate a conversation that could lead to a fruitful partnership.
With a well-crafted teaser deck, you’ll be one step closer to securing the funding you need to turn your vision into reality. So, go ahead and create a teaser deck that’s impossible for investors to resist, and set your startup on the path to success.
Enhancing sustainable commitments in retail banking
Source: Finance Derivative
Mikko Kähkönen, Head of Payment Cards Portfolio at Giesecke+Devrient
Today, more consumers are keeping environmental pledges from banks at the forefront of their financial decisions, and those banks that fall behind their competitors on sustainable action are risking the loss of customers, particularly among the younger generation. This shift highlights a growing expectation from consumers for their banks to make and uphold sustainable commitments, signalling a change in consumer priorities where environmental responsibility is increasingly seen as essential, not just an optional extra. Giesecke+Devrient research shows that as many as 64% of Gen Z consumers would be happy to switch banks if their current provider didn’t meet their expectations.
However, sustainable commitments must be authentic to avoid any accusations of greenwashing. Unfortunately for the banking sector, consumer trust is being strained as greenwashing incidents have risen by 70% around the world. Banks can’t simply make claims that can’t be backed up; pledges must be supported by evidence. There’s a number of practical steps they can take to prove their credentials.
Banking on the evolution of cards
The bank card has increasingly become a physical symbol of the relationship between consumer and bank. As such, banks have taken steps to ensure that it is designed with sustainability in mind. Many are now created with recycled PVC material, commonly up to 100%, with a lower carbon footprint.
Some banks are elevating their sustainable credentials by utilising cards that are made from plastic collected in oceans and coastal regions, helping to clear up the world’s beaches. Alongside this, others are issuing cards made of polylactic acid sourced from (inedible) corn starch. This is a fully renewable biomass that could be industrially composted.
Sustainable cards can then encourage further sustainable initiatives. We’re more often seeing issuers now actively taking part in local conservation, community development and educational projects around the world to help benefit the planet. Communicating these efforts to customers can help reinforce sustainable credentials and leave tangible evidence that proactive action is taking place.
Contributing to the circular economy
Powering the sustainable credentials of issued cards is one aspect, but it’s also vital that banks encourage their customers to do the right thing with them once they expire and they need to be discarded of. We’re already seeing prominent banks making progress in this area. UK retail bank, Santander, has launched a pilot scheme in branches and ATMs that encourages customers to return their outdated credit and debit cards for recycling, for example.
The collected cards are then turned into plastic pellets to be used elsewhere, for instance to make outdoor furniture, sponsored by Santander, for local communities. As more banks opt for card recycling, consumers will be empowered to dispose of their old or expired cards in a green way and help to reduce ecological footprint.
Into the digital world
Outside of card innovations, retail banks can add to their credible green claims with digital solutions. As an example, the card issuance process has typically involved paper letters, with additional PIN letter, that are posted out to customers to activate their payment cards. Instead, an ePIN service can enable customers to instantly access their PIN via their choice of a mobile app or SMS message, reducing paper waste and waiting times.
There are also innovations taking place in terms of QR codes and augmented reality (AR) solutions to enable digital marketing offerings. This means that printed collateral doesn’t need to physically sent out in the post. The more that these types of communications are sent out digitally, the more that consumers see a tangible commitment to sustainable practices.
Banks can even take an additional step by deploying third-party partners to track the CO2 footprint involved with every purchase or payment. By opting for organisations that have a solid track record in green practices, such as supporting product certifications and information on eco-products and their claims, they can make steps to compensate for each transaction carbon footprint.
Contributing to the green story
To ensure they don’t come under any criticism regarding their environmental claims, banks and financial institutions have the opportunity to adopt sustainable practices that align with their customers’ expectations for eco-friendly commitments in both their physical and digital services. They can introduce banking cards made from recycled or entirely compostable materials, eliminating plastic waste.
Digitally, banks can minimise unnecessary paper use by employing online applications to simplify the process of delivering PINs. By innovating in these domains, they can fulfil their environmental responsibilities and establish that essential trust with consumers, contributing positively to the planet’s wellbeing.
Successfully dealing with the unintended consequences of change
by Daniel Norman, Change Management Consultant at Symatrix
Most people dislike change. We are drawn to stability and established routines and feel unsettled when anything happens to disrupt the ‘status quo’. It’s bad enough when the local supermarket moves the bread section – but when the company we work for introduces a new digital system that completely changes how we work, it feels like ‘the sky is falling in’.
When change happens within businesses, there may initially be some resistance from employees: whether it be in the form of avoiding new systems, skipping training, clinging to old methods, or even quitting altogether. Change in business is a constant, however, and it is usually driven by a desire for improvement, and typically over time, becomes the new normal.
Good change management is all about smoothing this process of transition and that means engaging with people and helping them to seamlessly switch to a new model or ways of working. Change management is not just concerned with implementing new systems or processes; it is just as much about listening intently to colleagues, customers, and stakeholders.
It’s working with people to get things right, building a deep understanding of the challenges we and our colleagues face, and shaping the vision for a future that resonates with people. Change is most successful when everyone feels they have a part to play in moving things forward. And that’s true of all change initiatives, large and small.
Finding a way forward
When it comes to managing change, it’s important to recognise that everyone will have their own journey; they’ll work through things at their own pace, and that’s more sustainable than pretending we’ll all arrive at the same point at the same time.
It’s also important to focus on creating a supportive environment, or the right conditions for people to adapt, with as little friction as possible. The goal is to establish conditions that minimise friction and foster a collective sense of purpose. This philosophy is crucial in creating a environment conducive to individual and organisational growth.
Getting the planning process right
When planning for change, it’s essential to consider both the intended and unintended consequences. Just as technological advancements like social media have transformed communication but also introduced challenges such as misinformation and mental health concerns, organisational changes can have extensive, unforeseen impacts. A thorough exploration of current operational practices, beyond process maps or managerial assertions, is therefore, always a vital feature of any effective change management approach.
For that reason, it can often be a mistake to pull out those process maps the team updated 12 months ago or rely on the word of line managers that will tell you ‘this is how we operate’ without taking into consideration the work-arounds or simplifications that employees have developed over time.
Teams will naturally evolve, and patterns of work; ways of doing things that aren’t written down, will always be there. A good change manager must always be cognisant of that. Even small changes, like when a key person in the team changes roles, can have a big impact.
To manage change well, it’s important to talk to the people who will be most affected by it. This helps change managers to plan and effectively execute the change journey. By ignoring these key considerations, organisations risk their change strategy stalling from the outset and the opportunity for operational efficiencies may therefore never be fully realised.
Throughout the process, it is crucial to continuously monitor and measure the impact of change on all key stakeholders. One effective way of doing that is by embracing the principle of change curves: a popular model organisations can use to understand the different stages people and the organisation go through when a change occurs.
An effective strategy involves mapping stakeholders against this curve, whether as individuals or groups, during project check-ins. This approach can help project leaders gauge the current position of every team member on the curve, the impact of the project’s upcoming phase on them, or their colleagues, and additional support measures that could be implemented. Such an assessment facilitates a more tailored and effective change management strategy, ensuring stakeholders are adequately supported throughout the transition.
Not everything will run like clockwork, of course, no matter the change management approach that is put in place. Challenges, setbacks, and opportunities for improvement are inherent to any process, but proactive anticipation and planning for potential worst-case scenarios and unintended consequences significantly enhance our ability to support our colleagues and teams effectively. This strategic foresight is crucial in managing transitions smoothly and realising the intended benefits of initiatives.
A positive route ahead
Change, especially in business, are inevitable and often aimed at fostering improvement and growth. However, the journey through change is deeply personal and varies from one individual to another. By acknowledging this, creating a supportive environment, and engaging with all stakeholders, organisations can navigate the complexities of change with minimal resistance and maximum efficiency.
Effective change management, therefore, is not just about the technical implementation of new systems but about genuinely listening to and working with people to adapt and thrive in new circumstances. It’s about understanding the nuanced ways teams operate, the unofficial shortcuts and workarounds they’ve developed, and considering the broader implications of change beyond immediate operational efficiencies. Through a thoughtful approach that anticipates challenges and values stakeholder input, organisations can not only manage change but turn it into a catalyst for positive transformation and growth.
It is clear then that while people may inherently dislike change, with the right conditions, support, and leadership, the transition can become a journey of collective progress and innovation. Change, managed well, can transform the initial discomfort into an opportunity for development, making the once feared ‘sky falling in’ scenario a launchpad for reaching new heights.
Embedded finance: What consulting firms need to know
By Michael Pierce, VP of Sales at Toqio
Consulting firms are the architects of change in the business world, offering insights and solutions that guide companies toward growth and success. They navigate the intricate landscape of markets and industries, providing invaluable advice to their clients. In this evolving milieu, an opportunity is arising as embedded finance enters the scene, creating a unique and prospectively vital synergy between consultants and platform providers.
Embedded finance, especially within the scope of B2B enterprises, is a hot topic right now among consultancies and the outlook seems to be quite positive.
To date, much of the initial traction in embedded finance has been in the consumer sector, with products such as no- or low-interest financing, buy-now-pay-later (BNP), and others. On the B2B side, there is an increasing amount of mobilization. In recent months we’ve seen incumbent banks either entering the banking-as-a-service (BaaS) market or enabling their services through open banking partnerships, while strategy firms are busy advising corporate entities on the potential routes they can take. Early adopters have already made embedded finance a cornerstone of their digital or financial transformation programs: MVPs and proofs of concept have been on the rise.
As we all peer forward, the market is starting to look for scalable use cases to take advantage of these massive, predicted opportunities. Companies are searching for solutions that go beyond the hype.
For consulting firms, the messaging remains positive. The fundamentals of embedded finance drive strong service revenue. Even more importantly, the business cases for their clients stack up as well. Numerous opportunities are on the table when consultants incorporate embedded finance platforms into their projects, including increased revenue, improved retention rates, access to a wider range of data for better decision-making, and many more.
Embedded finance helps to break down barriers faced by many companies when trying to access affordable financial services. By integrating financial services directly into the supply chain, companies can enjoy many benefits, such as liquidity management, credit accessibility, risk mitigation, and many others. That’s one of the reasons why embedded finance platforms are proving to be the latest addition to the consultant’s toolkit. They offer a wide array of solutions that enable businesses to integrate financial services into their products and services. What makes embedded finance platforms especially appealing to consultants is their adaptability and scalability.
Consulting firms understand the need for versatile solutions capable of addressing various business requirements. Versatility and adaptability are key, giving consultants the flexible tools they need to deliver on time and within budget.
Embedded finance platforms are a natural extension of consulting firms’ capabilities as they offer a comprehensive range of financial solutions that integrate perfectly into existing business processes. This alignment provides consulting firms with several advantages, such as enhanced client services, data-driven insights, streamlined processes, scalability, and versatility.
The compatibility between consulting firms and embedded finance platforms is readily apparent. Consultants excel at diagnosing business issues and embedded finance platforms provide a precise prescription for financial enhancements.
There is an extensive list of benefits that consulting firms can get from platforms like this. Diversifying their business is just one of them as embedded finance platforms augment the services that consultants offer. They allow consultants to present clients with solutions for intricate business ecosystem operations, such as payment processing, receivables management, and liquidity optimization.
Partnering with an embedded finance platform can also open up new revenue streams as well as being able to scale the solutions built with more agility. Consultants can use them to address the unique needs of projects of any size, whether working with an SME or a multinational enterprise.
The relationship between consulting firms and embedded finance platforms isn’t just about expanding services, it’s about offering integrated financial solutions that improve efficiency, profitability, and competitiveness. This partnership drives results. In a world where businesses seek comprehensive solutions, embedded finance platforms empower consulting firms to address complex financial challenges effectively.