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What I’ve honorably been able to do, however, is share the deck I used to pitch Linked In to Greylock for a Series B investment back in 2004.

This gave me an idea: I could help many more entrepreneurs by making the deck available not just to the Greylock network of entrepreneurs, but to everyone. It has many stylistic errors — and a few substantive ones, too — that I would now change having learned more, but I realized that it still provides useful insights for entrepreneurs and startup participants outside of the Greylock network, particularly across three areas of interest: In 2004, the consumer internet was just beginning to rebound.

Friendster was at its height, strongly battling My Space after raising its premium round from Benchmark and Kleiner in the fall of 2003.

Then, spend the rest of the pitch backing up those claims and increasing investors’ confidence in your investment thesis.

For example, if I were pitching Linked In’s Series B today with what I now know about successful pitches, the investment thesis would be: Clearly articulate your investment thesis so investors can offer feedback that helps you refine it, eventually getting to a place where you both agree on it.

Open with your investment thesis, what prospective investors must believe in order to want to be shareholders of your company.