Pattern Angel pitch deck: RAW Courting App’s $3M deck

The RAW Courting App goals to shake up the relationship scheme by shedding the faux, TikTok-ified, closely filtered pictures and changing them with a extra real, unvarnished expertise. The app targets younger professionals and college students, significantly girls aged 21 to 27, who search real interactions.

The corporate’s staff claims it raised a $3 million family and friends spherical. I haven’t been capable of independently confirm that; many of the firm’s media protection seems to be written by the founder herself, in retailers like Forbes and Entrepreneur or as press releases that received syndicated throughout the net. Nonetheless, the deck was attention-grabbing sufficient that I wished to take a better look.

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Slides on this deck

Pitch decks are rather a lot like relationship: You’ve received to strut your stuff to persuade buyers that you simply’re the right match, worthy of thousands and thousands to develop and flourish. They should know that regardless of any bumps within the street, you’re the dream staff with whom they’ll navigate by means of something.

The pitch deck ought to promote your staff and your resolution, not simply the product. That is the place RAW’s pitch deck swipes left fairly onerous. As an alternative of showcasing the good staff poised to dominate a booming market and create a great deal of completely happy matches, the pitch deck looks like it’s attempting to get buyers to obtain the app, not make investments cash within the firm.

Due to this misguided focus, the deck is a scorching mess. The answer exhibits up earlier than the issue, and the issue isn’t even clearly acknowledged till slide 11 (there are solely 18 slides complete). The corporate tells me it submitted the deck precisely as pitched. Right here’s what is roofed:

  1. Cowl slide
  2. Product
  3. Worth proposition
  4. Function
  5. Function 2
  6. Function 3
  7. Goal market
  8. Worth proposition 2
  9. Worth proposition 3
  10. Resolution
  11. Drawback
  12. Drawback 2
  13. Drawback 3
  14. Competitors
  15. Ask and use of funds
  16. Slide 16
  17. Workforce
  18. Closing slide

Three issues to like about RAW’s pitch deck

I’ve already griped in regards to the deck’s weird order: The issue and resolution slides ought to be main the cost, not trailing close to the top. However, hey, credit score the place it’s due: While you lastly do bump into them, there are some shiny spots.

A transparent resolution slide

[Slide 10] As soon as we lastly get to the answer slide, I’m on board/ This may occasionally very nicely be an issue price fixing.
Picture Credit: RAW

RAW’s resolution slide is refreshingly clear, providing a concise assertion that hints on the modern options that set the app aside. The teasers embedded inside the slide successfully outline the answer, giving a snapshot of how RAW addresses the important thing ache factors of on-line relationship. It’s a pleasant change of tempo, offering simply sufficient data to pique curiosity with out being too overwhelming.

It’s good that this slide doesn’t overlap with the product particulars. After wading by means of numerous slides that learn like a person guide, it’s a reduction to see a targeted resolution assertion. The relentless product pitch is paused right here, permitting the answer to shine by itself deserves.

Nonetheless, I gained’t get too carried away with the reward right here. Whereas the answer is well-articulated, it falls brief. Claiming to resolve “most” relationship app issues appears like a cop-out. Buyers need to see confidence and ambition; inform them RAW solves all relationship app issues. This isn’t the place to hedge your bets or fear about overselling; it’s about convincing buyers that your resolution is complete and unbeatable. Promote them the dream, not only a Band-Support.

Yep, that’s an issue all proper

[Slide 11] That’s numerous scammers, y’all.
Picture Credit: RAW

Whereas it’s completely ludicrous that we needed to wade by means of 10 slides to lastly hit an issue assertion, I’ll begrudgingly admit it’s not a horrible drawback slide. Certain, there’s at all times room to enhance, however I’ll take hard-hitting numbers over wishy-washy “we’re making the world a greater place” junk any day of the week. The statistics do an honest job of highlighting a obtrusive situation within the relationship app world, I’ll give RAW that. Nonetheless, a sprinkle of credibility wouldn’t harm. Citing sources for these stats may have reworked skepticism into belief.

Concentrating on the goal

[Slide 7] Portray an image of the target market.
Picture Credit: RAW

A target market is meant to be an important a part of the pitch deck, and though this reads slightly awkwardly, it does present that the staff behind RAW has an honest grasp of their goal demographics. Nonetheless, “Girls age 21-27” appears slightly arbitrary and needlessly slender — why not simply “individuals of their 20s”? Nevertheless it’s refreshing to have this stage of readability.

We get a way of who RAW is aiming for and a obscure concept of their socioeconomic standing. Nonetheless, saying “giant U.S. cities” is like throwing a dart at a map. It’s higher to be particular. Identify the cities. Present you’ve achieved your homework and know precisely the place your prime customers reside.

And people cutesy advertising phrases like “rawmantics”? They may fly in a user-facing marketing campaign, however right here it is advisable to persuade hardened buyers. Ditch the fluff and display you realize who you’re focusing on with concrete, data-backed personas. Buyers need to see you could have a transparent, strategic strategy, not only a intelligent play on phrases.

Three issues that RAW may have improved

I’ll be trustworthy, there’s rather a lot lacking from this deck that actually mustn’t have been neglected. From the figures I can see on the included slides, there’s no approach I could make an inexpensive judgment as as to if RAW is venture-scale, apart from a intestine intuition that relationship apps are scorching property. RAW hasn’t introduced any market measurement information, there’s no go-to-market technique, and there’s a obtrusive gap across the enterprise mannequin and pricing. How precisely does this founding staff envision earning money?

  • Market measurement information is essential. Buyers have to know the potential for progress and the way huge the chance actually is. With out this, it’s unimaginable to gauge whether or not RAW can seize a good portion of the market. Present detailed analysis, statistics and projections to again up your claims to indicate that there’s a considerable market ripe for disruption.
  • The go-to-market technique is lacking. How do you propose to draw customers? What’s your advertising plan? Are there partnerships within the pipeline? Buyers have to see a transparent path to person acquisition and progress. Lay out your methods, goal channels, and anticipated milestones. That is important for demonstrating that you’ve a sensible and efficient plan to scale.
  • There’s no enterprise mannequin or pricing. How do you earn cash? Subscription charges? In-app purchases? Adverts? This can be a elementary query that wants a transparent reply. Define your income streams, pricing technique, and the way you propose to transform customers into paying clients. This readability is significant for buyers to grasp the monetary viability and long-term potential of RAW.

All that apart, there are some particular slides within the deck that would profit from revision and enchancment. Let’s give them a delicate ribbing and see how we may have turned this deck into one thing that really dazzles.

That’s not competitors …

[Slide 14] OK, come on. That is dangerous.
Picture Credit: RAW

All proper, founders, let’s discuss your aggressive slide, or reasonably, this dangerous excuse for one. It’s so dangerous, in reality, that if I have been contemplating to speculate on this startup, I’d ship them away and ask them to make an actual competitors slide.

In a hotly contested market like on-line relationship, you want a strong aggressive slide to indicate you’ve received a deal with on who you’re up towards, and what your aggressive benefit and differentiation is. Right here’s why a aggressive slide is essential: Buyers need to see that you simply perceive the battlefield. They should know you’re not simply conscious of the competitors however that you simply’ve achieved your homework and may outmaneuver them. Who’s the competitors? Coloured bins numbered 1 to three don’t reduce it. Anybody who has a pulse and has been single up to now decade can identify anyplace between one and 15 opponents off the highest of their heads.

It is advisable display rock-solid information of the sphere the place you use. Present buyers you grasp the panorama inside out and again to entrance and that nothing taking place on this house escapes your discover. This slide, sadly, doesn’t give me that confidence.

What number of opponents does RAW have? You want specifics. Whereas your opponents won’t provide what RAW does, do they supply any options RAW doesn’t? What’s the value comparability? Who do these totally different relationship apps attraction to? And let’s not overlook: Courting apps depend on individuals. It’s a numbers sport. If you happen to solely have a handful of customers, making significant matches goes to be robust. Buyers have to see you’re not simply one other face within the crowd; you’re the one who stands out and is aware of precisely why you’re higher. So, let’s see that aggressive evaluation beefed up with actual information, insights, and a transparent image of the place RAW matches on this crowded market.

Hi there, thriller slide!

[Slide 16] Welcome to my least favourite sport present: Identify the thriller slide.
Picture Credit: RAW

OK, let’s dive into the enigma that’s slide 16. You’ll discover I’ve simply referred to this one as “slide 16.” Is it a traction slide? Possibly. Maybe it’s a projected progress slide? I don’t know. May or not it’s a mixture of each, forming a now-and-next slide? Is it exhibiting traction from the previous or projections into the long run? It’s all potential, however I simply don’t know.

First off, the slide itself doesn’t have a title. Whereas not all decks title their slides, they’re helpful. A title would give a touch about what we’re taking a look at right here. As an alternative, we get a thriller field of data with no context. It’s like attempting to learn a map with no legend. Assist me out right here.

There are not any labels on the graph’s axes apart from months. Which years are these months from? Is it exhibiting July 2023 to Might 2024? Or perhaps even July 2024 to Might 2025? The corporate launched in 2023 (it says so on slide 2), so I’m guessing the previous, however I can’t be sure. Are these month-to-month energetic person numbers exhibiting precise progress? Through which case, they need to be charted correctly on the graph. Or are they progress projections? And even when they’re projections, they need to be laid out with conviction. Give me clear, labeled axes and a timeline that is sensible.

If these are precise person numbers, they’re presumably bringing some income with them. And seeing as income is one of the best type of traction, present me the cash! How a lot income are we speaking about right here? Buyers have to see the monetary affect, not simply ambiguous traces on a graph. Truthfully, so far as graphs go, this one is verging on ineffective. Make clear your information, label your axes, and ensure this slide conveys a transparent, impactful message.

We received 99 issues, and the pitch is one

[Slide 13] Why are we speaking about the issue once more?
Picture Credit: RAW

Three drawback slides on this deck is totally overkill — particularly as a result of the staff is utilizing three slides to hammer dwelling the identical level in barely alternative ways. Only one concise slide will do: “Courting apps make it tougher, not simpler, to search out real love.” Then run down the statistics that RAW has placed on the primary drawback slide (and double-check that $638.8 million determine — it appears like somebody received a bit too artistic with their decimal factors). And the second drawback slide is simply litter.

Are these statements on the second drawback slide actual findings from RAW’s analysis? Or are they made up? In the event that they’re fabricated, why trouble together with them? The primary slide’s chilly, onerous statistics cowl the identical floor. Buyers love statistics, particularly in the event that they’re based mostly on strong analysis. There’s no have to go over previous floor. Preserve it recent; hold it energetic. Don’t waste helpful deck actual property.

Now, about these issues. Sure, ghosting is an issue, however you may’t make individuals cease ghosting. Human conduct isn’t one thing you may management with an app characteristic. And sure, scamming is an issue, however scams prey on weak individuals searching for love. Actual pictures are simply a part of the answer. Have you ever seen the “Tinder Swindler”? It’s a jungle on the market.

Lastly, I’m taking situation with maybe a barely obscure a part of the deck: The staff says “actual pictures” and “no Photoshop,” however the majority of the pictures on this deck appear to be they’ve been plucked from a high-end studio, with a little bit of Photoshop magic. Actually, lots of them are inventory pictures. After you’ve clicked by means of the deck, you’ll acknowledge Man with Pink Tank Prime, Considerate Man with Guitar, Selfie of Couple in New York Park, and doubtless just a few others, too.

I’m not saying you may’t use inventory pictures in pitch decks, however on this case, the place the corporate is touting real interactions that begin with real pictures, it’s slightly off-putting.

Total, I’m caught: I can’t get to the assumption that this product is an actual resolution to the issues the corporate outlines, and I discover myself with a want: Present me how RAW tangibly addresses these points with extra than simply hopes, goals and good intentions — ideally with a strong enterprise mannequin beneath all of that.

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