General Manager Of PepsiCo Labs Shares And Resolves The Most Common Mistakes Startups Make In Their Pitch Deck


Startups frequently prepare a “pitch deck” to present their company to prospective angel or venture capital investors. In this difficult and time-consuming process of raising capital from investors, a startup must create a great investor pitch deck by articulating a compelling and interesting storyline. However, there are some common mistakes every startup company makes while presenting their pitch deck which ultimately result in getting rejected. 

To point out these mistakes and help the startups, Anna Farberov, the GM of PepsiCo Labs, recently shared a LinkedIn post sharing the mistakes and the ways to resolve them. 

According to Anna, these are the 5 common mistakes she noticed:

1. No Personalization

Most startups use a generic investor deck to pitch to VCs, corporate innovation teams, and experts. Market size and revenue potential aren’t relevant to innovation experts. They want to know how you can help them solve their pain. Don’t waste valuable time on irrelevant background information. 

2. Lack Of Clarity

“I was asked to review a startup. I read their deck and website and could only gather a connection to Last Mile delivery, but I had no idea WHAT problem you are addressing and HOW you will solve it,” She shared. 

3. React Defensively To Questions

When we raise questions about different scenarios in an attempt to understand how the solution works, some startups answer defensively. 

BONUS tip: If you pay attention to the questions, you will get a  vital and valuable preview of industry needs. 

4. Underestimating Corporate Complexity

In their attempt to succeed and sell their solutions, some startups overpromise their ability to scale and integrate quickly with a large organization. They are unable to keep up with fast scaling, which may paralyze or even kill the startup since they direct most, if not all, their resources to one (big) client. It’s tough to recover when you underdeliver and lose credibility and attention. 

5. Not Taking No For An Answer

She stated, “On the one hand, I admire their determination. On the other hand, these startups reach out to different executives after the experts already said no, which causes the executives to ask the same experts to assess the startups again. This only causes inefficiency, waste of time, and despair.”

Ultimately, through this post, her goal is to help brilliant startups improve their chances of working with big clients. 

  • Staff Reporter 

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