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Fix the Pitch

How to craft compelling, dazzling pitchbooks. Thoughts, ideas, and inspiration to help construct advanced financial analysis, build stunning data visualizations and tips for mastering client meetings.

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How investment bankers can create exciting data visualizations, conduct smart financial analysis, and build compelling pitchbooks for their clients

The evolution of the data table

It's really difficult to present a standard data table. So can you use a more intuitive design to show the same data (and have a better meeting)? If you've spent any time in the trenches of an investment bank…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

The pitchbook of the future

How technology could transform the distribution, analytics, and personalization of investment banking pitchbooks. More and more often I'm asked by clients how they can improve the distribution and analytics o…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What’s missing from pitchbook creation?

When creating pitchbooks, testing ideas and applying existing knowledge can elevate a pitchbook. So why doesn't this happen? I’ve spent almost 20 years working in the trenches of investment banks, producing a…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What’s trending this month?

Grouped comps bubbles, analyst recommendations, and periodic metric charts are trending this month at Pellucid. Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and other strategic a…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Is your pitchbook stack in place?

For boutique investment banks, an effective pitchbook stack is essential to making content faster, better, and easier to create. Whether you’re striking out on your own after years at a large firm, or have be…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Step-up to better pitchbook line charts

Some data and chart combinations simply don't work and will result in a bad meeting. Why this is a better chart to use for target price data. Understanding data before plotting it is the critical first step i…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Junior bankers can only write what they know

If we don't nurture the writing skills analysts and associates, are we creating an industry where no one knows how to craft a pitchbook? The ability to write—to clearly convey ideas, thoughts or concept…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What pitchbook content was trending in February?

Comps ranking with summary table, Comps index with intensity bars, and Grouped comps bubble charts. Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and strategic advisors. It’s fill…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Charting in Excel vs. Pellucid

Pellucid is an evolution of the charting paradigm established by Microsoft Excel, explains Pellucid's Chief Content Officer how they compare. Microsoft Excel, which remains the universal charting application…

Eric RattnerEric Rattner

Junior bankers, do you know your optimal stopping point?

When creating pitchbooks for senior bankers, when is an further effort a waste of time? Recently, I wrote an article discussing the differing perspectives of junior bankers versus senior bankers when it comes…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What pitchbook content was trending in January?

Comps scatter, cumulative market returns, and horizontal benchmarking charts were trending at Pellucid. Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and strategic advisors. It’s…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Scatter charts, regressions, and what to look out for when plotting data

Eric Rattner shares best practices about scatter charts and visual treatments. The Pellucid Library is filled with charts, pages, and books designed specifically for investment banking pitchbooks and…

Eric RattnerEric Rattner

Best of Fix The Pitch 2016

Over the past year, we've shared stories, thoughts, and ideas to help you fix the pitch. Here's a collection of some of our favorites. 2016 was a great year for Pellucid. In Q4, we began our roll out across W…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

“Similar. But different”: innovation in pitchbook visualizations

Is a benchmarking ever just a benchmarking chart? At Pellucid, we spend a lot of time thinking about pitchbook content. And we’ve noticed that similar to the adage “beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” inno…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What pitchbook content is trending at Pellucid?

Share price chart with future uncertainty fan, marginal histograms, and grouped comps bubbles Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and strategic advisors. It’s filled wit…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

You created a pitchbook. So what?

When creating a lengthy pitchbook for a client meeting, how asking "so what?" can ensure you are delivering insights and not just repeating data. “If I am to speak ten minutes, I need a week for preparation;…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Fix The Pitch recommended reading list

From data viz, to advanced math, to feminism, to behavioral economics, check out the Fix The Pitch reading list. Pellucid’s goal is to streamline and elevate the pitchbook and client materials created by inve…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Why your pitchbook needs a rearview mirror

Backtesting is an unsung hero of investment banking. Why this analysis should be included in your pitchbook. Rationally, clients know you can’t see into the future. And I’m sure no-one wishes that wasn’t the…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

November in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

Avoiding badly labeled histograms, adopting micro-content, a probability cheat sheet, and the Kevin Bacon of the art world. November didn’t go how many people expected. The impact of the election is still bei…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Investment bankers and micro-content, an emerging love story

Sending a sample chart to a client in advance can save hours in pitchbook production. Ask any junior banker on what they spend the most time and producing content is likely to be near the top of the list. As…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

The two ways you need to calculate pitchbook costs

Most banks don't really know how much is spent on pitchbook production. Here's how to break down the costs. In meetings with clients, one thing we always talk about is how to evaluate the power of Pellucid.…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Junior bankers: avoid the pitfalls of a bad histogram

A badly labeled chart can throw a wrench in a client meeting. Avoid the perils of a poorly executed histogram. Perhaps before you began your banking career you were introduced to histograms in a statistics cl…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

October in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

"Smart creatives", labeling data vs. labeling axes, the NBA, and horrror movie villians. Here's what you may have missed in October. There’s been a lot of big stories this month: the Cubs finally made it to…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

How many pitches result in a mandate?

How recording client insights, timing meetings correctly and increasing speed to meeting can boost your ratio of pitch:wins. What is your pitch:win ratio? How many of your pitches become mandates? Or, put ano…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

One histogram, endless customizations

Three different ways to customize a pitchbook cross sectional histogram to tell a different story each time you show it. This is a cross sectional histogram. It shows the distribution of a metric for…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

September in Review

Updating share price charts, how to land a summer job at Goldman Sachs, why bankers should hold after-action reviews, pitchbook content inspiration and more. September at Pellucid. There are less than 40 days…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

When to exclude a subject company from an analysis. And when to not

When bankers should exclude the subject company's data from an analysis. From time to time, I disagree with some standard banking analytical practice or other. Ok, quite a few standard banking analytical prac…

Jamie BallingallJamie Ballingall

What pitchbook content is trending at Pellucid in September?

Pellucid's library is filled with content specifically for pitchbooks. The three charts that were trending in September. Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and strategi…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

For memorable pitchbooks, three is the magic number

Asking clients to remember 12 things is asking them to work too hard. How to make your pitches more memorable. If you really want to feel good about yourself, the day after your next client meeting ask the cl…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Building Pellucid: finding what you need

As useful as starring, favoriting and bookmarking is, it requires an action. What if there was an easier way to find what you need? Bookmarking, starring, storing—all are ways of marketing something to…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

An alternative take on the share price chart

Instead of another share price chart, use a waterfall chart to break down share price movements and take your analysis one step further. One of the things we spend a lot of time thinking about at Pellucid is…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What bankers can learn from the military

The army's "after-action reviews" help it perfect strategies and learn from mistakes. Which is exactly why you need to adopt the process. The U.S. Army’s Opposing Force (OPFOR) is always the enemy. Based in…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

August in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

Expanding your pitchbook content repertoire, a reason to brush up your people skills, what "alpha" really means, and how to read more books. We’ve been borrowing best practices from design and applying them t…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Why you should think twice about adding aggregates to stacked benchmarking charts

Why adding summary stat overlays to stacked benchmarking charts gets tricky. Bankers love to benchmark. Or at least this can be assumed based on the number of benchmarking charts in a pitchbook. Comparing a d…

Eric RattnerEric Rattner

No one is reading your executive summary

How tapping into the knowledge of designers can increase the visibility of your pitchbook content to make sure your key points land. If you’ve ever worked with designers you will know that, on the whole, they…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What pitchbook content is trending at Pellucid in August?

Pellucid's content library is filled with content for pitchbooks and analysis. Here's what was popular in August. Pellucid’s content library is designed specifically for investment bankers and strategic advis…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Pellucid book club: The Design of Everyday Things

How "signifiers" and "affordances" can help investment bankers guide their audience to different conclusions. How the Pellucid Book Club works: Each month two books are nominated. A vote is taken on which to…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

July in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

Why you should attend your company happy hour, the genealogy of popular music, inspirational pitchbook content, and the importance of Liar's Poker. Maybe it’s something in the air, but there were a few excell…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

The pitchbook paradox

A banker's most valuable asset is strategic advice, yet pitchbook creation means it’s what they spend the least amount of time developing. As a banker, part of the job I always enjoyed the most was solving th…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What pitchbook content is trending at Pellucid?

Trending pitchbook content: analyst recommendations, share price performance, and benchmarking. From pitchbook essentials to advanced data visualizations, Pellucid's content library is designed to help banke…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Deceptively simple: benchmarking charts

Benchmarking charts feature in nearly every pitchbook. Yet, each time they are created, they are a bespoke piece of content. I have good news and bad news about benchmarking charts. The good news is that the…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

June in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

Banks shaking up their recruitment methods, movie reboots, and why running five minutes late may cost you a seat at the table. In June, more banks announced changes to try and retain and attract junior banker…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Introducing the Data Hub

Override values, change definitions, review sources. Complete confidence and transparency for perfect content, every time. It’s 2 a.m. and you’re close to wrapping up your pitchbook for tomorrow morning’s me…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

May in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

The end of the school year means graduation speeches and interns flocking to Wall Street. Here's May from Fix The Pitch. End of the school year means graduation time, and thousands of interns getting pumped f…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Pitchbooks: Ideas are cheap, execution isn’t

Strategic ideas are a banker's best asset. But more ideas means more content has to be created. Welcome to the pitchbook paradox. Costing around $40,000 on average, pitchbooks are an expensive yet necessary p…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Finding content you’d forgotten you’d lost

Finding and reusing old content is no longer a difficult process with Pellucid keyword search. Find what you need, fast. “Where’s that deck we did for Hasbro’s share repurchase in 2015?” “Where’s that analyst…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

How to treat data outliers in pitchbook charts

Outliers can be a frustrating experience when creating pitchbook content. Here are three treatment options for bankers. Outliers are a pain. If you’ve had to chart data that includes extreme values, it’s pro…

Eric RattnerEric Rattner

April in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

Speculation and intrigue in April. Is John Snow dead? Who will the running mates be? And how to fix the junior banker problem. April was a month of speculation and intrigue in the Pellucid offices. Is John Sn…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

But what goes into a pitchbook exactly?

We undertook an audit of over 2,000 pitchbooks to see what goes into them exactly. We found not all pitchbooks are the same, far from it. We know, and you probably know too, that the pitchbook creation proces…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Problems are easy. Solutions aren’t

We've examined the investment banking pitchbook problem from every angle. Here's our approach and how we know when it's solved. In product development, there is an adage “find a problem and solve it”. If you…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

March in review: Pellucid's Fix The Pitch

We hope your first quarter has been as productive as ours. If not, here are a selection of stories from the Pellucid team to fix that. The first quarter of 2016 is over! We hope your year has been as producti…

Team PellucidTeam Pellucid

Why a square filled doughnut is actually a waffle

Despite being a commonly used pitchbok visualization, pie charts are frequently misued. Here's why. At least once a week someone at Pellucid Analytics has a rant about a bad visualization. And while we admit…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

The eight pillars of Pellucid

To solve the pitchbook problem, it's a questions of which skills, not which backgrounds: The eight core skills of Pellucid Analytics. I can recall a conversation I had around the time I started Pellucid Analy…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Nine rules for a perfect value axis

Chief Content Officer, Eric Rattner, outlines his nine unbreakable rules for labeling a standalone value axis when creating pitchbooks charts. It’s not easy to create a good chart. As Chief Content Officer at…

Eric RattnerEric Rattner

Data needs visualization AND transformation

It's not enough to just use a visualization, you have to transform the data into something meaningful first. A side-effect of big data is that in an effort to extract insights from it there has been an increa…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Complex content creation requires a scalpel, not a Swiss Army Knife

Sometimes a one-size-fits-all product will only get you so far. I own three bikes: one for commuting, one for racing, and one for long rides. I guess I could use the same bike for all three activities, but wh…

Patrick RyanPatrick Ryan

Big data: You're gonna need a better chart

Not every banker can, nor should, be a data scientist, but they should be a data samurai. The importance of a good visualization. Every day 2.5 quintillion bytes of data is created. Ninety percent of the worl…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Curation: It doesn’t only belong in a museum

If you can curate information to the needs and interests of clients, you can cut down on pitchbook churn. Ask junior investment bankers on what they spend most of their time, and pitchbooks will usually be th…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Compound charts: The visualization you’ve been waiting for

The popularity of infographics shows how different chart elements can be combined to tell a comprehensive story. Data is everywhere, reporting on everything. Its abundance means more situations can be modele…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

The one simple rule for a great pitchbook

As a banker, the best piece of career advice I ever received had nothing to do with scrubbing numbers, building models, or conducting an analysis. The best piece of career advice I ever received had nothing t…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

What “less is more” means for junior bankers

How to balance a rich, layered story with the power of a single takeaway message by using the "less is more" approach. “Less is more.” A well-known phrase with dual meaning. It was made popular by architect L…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

A share price chart is a waste of time

CFOs know their company share price. In fact, they know more about their company than any banker. So why tell them something they already know? That is if it tells you something you already know. Before I g…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

2016: The year of better pitchbooks

Resources to build better pitchbooks. From smart methods of data analysis and building impressive charts, to how to curate and craft the perfect message. Ah, New Year, the time for self-improvement and learni…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Two steps to become pitch perfect

You get to a client meeting and your 60 minutes is reduced to 30. How to use storyboarding and presentation practice to be prepared. The American Film Institute lists Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dw…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Two ways to get better spaghetti charts

Are there ways to make spaghetti charts clearer and more intuitive to read? Two design enhancements to improve your pitchbooks charts. The spaghetti chart. Probably one of the most common visualizations in a…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Not even Goldman Sachs can clone bankers

As banks introduce solutions to attract and retain employees, what are the technology strategy considerations? Goldman Sachs recently announced new initiatives for its analyst program. Notably quicker promoti…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

The democratization of data and investment bankers

The ubiquity of data means clients aren't impressed by a share price chart. Three ways to channel your inner data scientist. "I used to be like a magician. Pulling out smart things from analysis like rabbits…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett

Why I had to leave Wall Street to fix it

One thing I know for certain to be true about today's investment bank: The pitchbook process is broken and it's time to fix it. “That’s not how we do things around here.” It was my ninth day at an investment…

Adrian CrockettAdrian Crockett