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Designing Pitch Decks That Charms Investors (+Templates)

Learn how to design an irresistable pitch deck. Explore our principles of modern pitch deck design and apply creative pitch deck design tips to stand out.

Dominika Krukowska

6 minute read

Pitch deck design
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Short answer

How to design a pitch deck that stands out?

  1. Design with storytelling in mind

  2. Embrace "show, don't tell" with visuals

  3. Make slides interactive to engage viewers

  4. Incorporate multimedia for a dynamic feel

  5. Start with a striking visual hook on the title slide

  6. Prioritize consistency in branding and design

The real cost of your pitch deck is much higher than you think

Ever found yourself marveling at the sleek design of your new deck, only to have a colleague or an investor murmur “haven’t I seen this somewhere before?”

That's the trap many entrepreneurs fall into. Enthusiastic about their new ventures, they throw money at agencies to create their pitch decks, hoping to make a splash.

But instead, they end up drowning in a sea of sameness, with same-old presentations that echo what’s already out there.

In the entrepreneurial world, failing to stand out can be costly.

Don’t risk sinking more money into presentations that fade into the crowd. This post was written to save entrepreneurs from themselves.

Dive in, and discover how to elevate your pitch deck from just another pretty slideshow to a captivating narrative that truly stands out. And spend less of your limited resources doing it.

Let’s go!

What makes good pitch deck design?

Good pitch deck design marries compelling content with striking visuals. It needs to include:

  • Balanced use of color and whitespace

  • Consistent branding throughout

  • Engaging visuals that complement the narrative

  • Typography that's both readable and aesthetically pleasing

  • Interactive elements to captivate viewers

  • Infographics or dataviz elements that simplify complex data

Should I let an agency design my pitch deck or design in-house?

While agencies bring diverse expertise to pitch deck creation, in-house design ensures brand consistency, allows for quick updates, and benefits from a team deeply familiar with your company's essence.

Plus, it's much more budget-friendly than agencies.

And, with a pitch deck design tool like Storydoc, the entire design process is made easy.

Storydoc’s AI design assistant guides your design to perfection, and the walled garden editor lets anyone on your team make content edits while preventing them from breaking the design or going off brand.

How much should a pitch deck cost?

Agencies charge premium rates for custom pitch deck designs, typically ranging from $2,000 to $10,000.

On the other hand, templates are a budget-friendly alternative, costing anywhere from free to a few hundred dollars. You shouldn’t pay more than this amount for a modern pitch deck design.

How long does it take to design a pitch deck?

Agencies can craft a pitch deck in 1-4 weeks, depending on project complexity and taking into consideration feedback loops. You can take this down from days to just 2-5 hours with interactive pitch deck templates.

Professional creative pitch deck design ideas investors love

Ever wondered how to take your pitch deck from 'just another presentation' to a captivating narrative that grabs attention? Making a pitch deck interesting is all about blending professionalism with creativity.

Dive into these modern pitch deck design ideas that not only look sleek but also engage and resonate with your audience.

Startup pitch deck design

Dive into a sea of calming blues with this design, giving a feel of trust right from the start. The layout is spacious, making each point stand out.

Simple graphics and clear fonts ensure your startup's vision is front and center, making it a breeze for viewers to follow along.

Investment pitch deck design

Precision is key when discussing finances. This design understands that, employing clean lines, well-spaced elements, and impactful visuals.

Charts and graphs are presented in a way that they don't overwhelm but inform, making complex financial data approachable and clear.

Modern pitch deck design

This template pops with cool shades of blue, giving it a fresh feel. The layout is simple yet effective, ensuring your content remains the hero.

What's even better? It's designed for easy personalization, allowing you to tweak and tailor as you see fit, making your pitch truly yours.

Creative pitch deck design

Ready to spark some curiosity? This design includes interactive elements in a mix of bright colors and charts that are made to be both eye-catching and informative.

It also uses narrated design, or scrollytelling, to guide viewers smoothly through the content, turning your pitch into a visual journey.

Sales pitch deck design

This design shines with its vibrant orange elements, instantly grabbing attention. It smartly uses tabs and quadrants to segment and organize content, making it super easy for viewers to follow along.

It's not just about looking good; these design choices ensure your sales pitch is both engaging and structured.

Corporate pitch deck design

This design is a blend of sophistication and functionality. The dark, high-contrast colors set a professional tone, while plenty of image and video placeholders allow for dynamic storytelling.

And the cherry on top? Engaging dataviz elements that transform numbers into compelling visuals.

Business pitch deck design

The last option takes the best bits from the corporate design but lightens things up. While it maintains a professional character, the brighter palette gives it a more approachable feel.

The layout is clean, with well-placed spots for images and videos. Dataviz elements are seamlessly integrated, turning data into visual stories.

Pitch deck design best practices

Crafting a pitch deck that captivates and convinces is an art. But like all arts, it's grounded in certain principles.

Drawing insights from "Pitch Perfect: Raising Capital for Your Startup" by Haje Jan Kamps, and further research, here are some best practices to ensure your pitch deck doesn't just look good but also resonates with its audience.

1) Use simple colors

Colors can set the tone for your entire presentation. Stick to clean, straightforward shades that complement each other. This not only makes your content pop but also keeps your audience's focus right where you want it.

Here's a great example of a clean presentation:

2) Use high-quality photographs

Personal photos, especially those that capture the essence of your brand or product, can elevate your pitch deck. They bring a touch of reality and relatability, making your story more compelling than generic stock images ever could.

3) Use consistent fonts and font sizes

Think of fonts as the voice of your slides. Imagine if someone kept changing their tone while speaking – confusing, right?

Choose one or two fonts that align with your brand's voice and use them consistently. This ensures a cohesive look and feel, making your content easily digestible.

Here's an example of a cohesive presentation:

4) Put no more than 30 words on a slide

Investors are busy people, so you should aim for short and sweet. About 30 words per slide should do the trick. It's enough to get your point across without overwhelming anyone.

5) Include product photography or screenshots

If you're showcasing a product, let it shine! Whether it's product photography or clear screenshots, these images offer a tangible feel, bridging the gap between idea and reality and making your pitch more compelling.

6) Ensure good contrast from the background

Ever strained your eyes trying to read text that barely stands out from the background? Ensure your text and images pop against their backdrop. Good contrast enhances readability and aesthetics.

Here's an example of a presentation with good contrast:

7) Use few images of people and more of your product

Carmen Simon's insights highlight the power and pitfalls of using human images. While they can make a message feel personal, they can also distract from the main content.

The trick? Use human images that feel genuine and align with your message. And remember, people are naturally drawn to faces, so use them to guide attention to key parts of your pitch.

8) Convey one idea per slide

Each slide is a piece of your story. By focusing on one main idea per slide, you make it easier for your audience to follow along and remember the key points of your pitch.

9) Avoid distractions

It's easy to get carried away with design elements, but your core message should always be front and center.

Keep your slides clean and focused, emphasizing the main points without unnecessary distractions like excessive text, flashy animations, and off-brand humor.

And, if you’re wondering what to put on each slide of your pitch deck, check out our article on how to create a winning pitch deck investors love.

Pitch deck design mistakes to avoid

While crafting that perfect pitch deck design is an exciting journey, there are a few pitfalls along the way that can trip you up.

Here are 5 common mistakes and how to avoid them:

1) The misuse of screenshots

We've all seen it – a screenshot that's too small, blurry, or just doesn't fit right. If you're using screenshots, make sure they're clear, relevant, and add value to your slide. Remember, it's all about clarity and context.

2) The temptation of overloading slides

It's tempting to pack in all the info, but too much text or too many images can overwhelm your audience. Keep it concise. Let each slide breathe and convey one main idea.

Basically, you don’t want your pitch deck design to end up looking like this:

Text-heavy PDF

3) Prioritizing design over content

A beautiful slide is great, but remember, investors are investing in you and your vision, not just a pretty presentation. While design matters, your content is king. Your message needs to shine through, loud and clear.

After all, you don’t want investors to start questioning what you might be trying to overcompensate for or hide under flashy designs, do you?

4) Too many distractions on slides

While creative pitch deck design is encouraged, avoid elements that overshadow your main points. Excessive animations or unrelated visuals can divert attention, diluting the impact of your pitch.

5) Not designing pitch decks for mobile viewing

Did you know that a third of all decks are opened on mobile? And there's nothing more off-putting for your reader, especially an investor short on time, than having to pinch and zoom to see your content. Making your deck mobile-friendly isn't just a nice touch—it's essential.

Here’s what a static deck looks like on mobile:

PDF document on mobile

Pitch deck design templates that stand out

Navigating the world of pitch deck design can be a tad overwhelming, right? That's where interactive pitch deck templates come in handy.

Think of them as your shortcut to a polished, professional look without the design heavy-lifting and cost.

They're all crafted with best practices in mind, reducing your risk of falling flat and ensuring your content outshines the rest.

Grab one.

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Dominika Krukowska

Hi, I'm Dominika, Content Specialist at Storydoc. As a creative professional with experience in fashion, I'm here to show you how to amplify your brand message through the power of storytelling and eye-catching visuals.

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