Un-complicate Your Startup’s Pitch Deck and Data Room

5 data points you need to track for investors (and only 5)

Joe Procopio
5 min readJan 2


image by dcstudio

Recently, I answered a question about investor data from a founder who is well on their way to potentially great things, but since it’s their first time leading a company, they keep running into complications around some of the more unnecessarily complicated startup concepts.

Un-complicating startup concepts is my wheelhouse.

I’ve done starting up from all sides. I’ve done it on my own and self-funded to exit. I’ve done it teaming up with repeat founders and repeat investors in IPO-or-bust type ventures.

Most of my education in business is self-taught. I have an engineering degree, not a business degree, and I lucked into my first startup without even knowing what a startup was. Even so, by that time I had already started two “small businesses” — one in college and another in the fifth grade.

So like anyone in my position, the first time someone who wasn’t my fifth-grade teacher asked to see all the data on my startup, I freaked out, because I didn’t have any data on my startup.

After that, I started learning everything I could get my hands on about how startup investment worked. I also started tracking all the data about my startup that people told me I should track, which was also a mistake.

See, the problem is, the data I need to track isn’t the data you need to track. The pitch deck I need to build doesn’t look anything like the pitch deck you need to build.

So how do you build the pitch deck and the data room that YOU need to build?

The Relationships Between the Data, the Deck, and the Room

Again, because all startups are unique and completely different from the rest, simple concepts quickly become acronyms, buzzwords, and platitudes. At its heart, starting a business is about making and selling a product for more than it costs to make and sell it. Thus, getting investment is about selling pieces of a company based on its speculative return on the value of those pieces.



Joe Procopio

I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. NLG pioneer. Building TeachingStartup.com & GROWERS. Write at Inc.com and BuiltIn.com. More at joeprocopio.com