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Key Steps to an Effective Storytelling Slide Deck

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Key Steps to an Effective Storytelling Slide Deck

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Storytelling may be a current buzzword but that doesn’t belittle the efficacy of telling a good story. Andrew McKee shares his company’s approach to spinning a good yarn for a slide deck.

Biotech’s flameout,” “bloodbath,” “thousands of layoffs.” We’ve all heard it, and we’re in it.

Whether you’re at a company looking to build alignment with your Board on how to conserve cash, searching for optimal partners to support clinical milestones, developing strategies to attract sought-after VC funds, or in the process of preparing to go public when the market rebounds – a good story is essential for your path forward.  We’d like to help.

In the last year, we’ve helped numerous clients craft strategic narratives across disciplines. For instance, we worked closely with ReCode Therapeutics to craft their growth strategy and story, which helped them raise an extended $120M Series B in June. We collaborated with Japan-based J-Pharma to create their growth strategy story and slide deck presented at JPM, which elicited praise from their lead investors and interest from potential partners.

Our approach to storytelling generally involves 6 steps that we tailor as needed:

Understand & discover – We interview key leaders and stakeholders within your company to understand the current story, its strengths, and its limitations.  We work to understand the audience and your preferred storytelling style (e.g., from a clean, linear flow to a more dramatic, Steve Jobs build-up style). Optionally, we can interview external experts for better insights into the disease landscape.

Creatively brainstorm – In collaboration with you, we identify the key messages to share and any points of likely audience enthusiasm, surprise, or concern. We can also compile case studies (of other company’s growth trajectories) and/or conduct workshops with you, with a focus on aligning your company’s values, goals, and future paths.

Create storyline options – Using principles of effective storytelling, we will collaboratively ideate on a few storyline options.

Choose the best storyline – We review the envisioned storylines with attention to content, story flow, audience, and other subjective elements (e.g., emphasis, perspective, how bullish).

Build mock slides – We mock-up individual slides, often with multiple versions per slide, on paper, whiteboards, and in PowerPoint.  This further helps the story take shape before we go into full-on slide production.”

Key points include:

  • Creative collaboration

  • Ensuring clarity

  • Perfecting preparation

Read the full article, Our Approach to Storytelling, on HeadlandStrategy.com.