How to Use the 10/20/30 Rule to Make Your Presentation Simple, Short, and Sweet - Deepstash
The origin of 10/20/30 Rule

Guy Kawasaki, the head of marketing at Apple back in the 1980s, discovered the science behind pitching. He calls it the "10/20/30 Rule" and it's based on the principles of clarity and focus. He uses it in every presentation.

And so do some of the most successful brands, since this rule's been used in AirBnb's pitch deck , Buffer's , and YouTube's (plus hundreds more).

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The rules of the 10/20/30 Rule

Whether you're pitching a tech startup or an ad campaign, the goal is the same you want someone to buy your idea.

Building a deck with the 10/20/30 Rule is all about:

  • 10 slides or less
  • 20 minutes or less
  • 30 point type or larger

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10 Slides or Less

Ask yourself:

  • Strategy : Do you really need 13 pages breaking down audiences, income, consumption strategies, brand loves, or media habits? Or can you nail it with one slide about who you're talking to, and a slide or two with a focused insight?
  • Creative : Is it absolutely necessary to show the same visual mocked up into a banner, social post, billboard, magazine, bus shelter, and wrapped around a buiding in Times Square? Less is more.

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20 Minutes or Less

Don't use your words. In a presentation, say only what you need to.

Pitching is like jazz. Like the notes you don't play, it's the words you don't say that make the difference. But it's not just about leaving room for discussion.

We have short attention spans. If you drone on for too long, you're going to lose people. Studies even show that your audience only retains about 65% of what you say. And the longer you talk, the less they remember.

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30 Point Type or Larger

Filling a slide with everything you want to say does two things:

  • Makes your presentation stiff: Reading from a slide defeats the purpose.
  • The client reads ahead: The same way we instinctively read subtitles when they're on a movie. So, they'll read ahead, revealing the twist and ignoring your voice.

The point is to not only make the type big enough for the client to read from across the room (which they'll probably be doing), but to be selective about what you put on that slide.

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