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What can an entrepreneur say in an investor meeting that instantly marks them as an amateur?

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Some of those absolutely cringe-worthy. Talking to other entrepreneurs, the amazing thing is I hear so many of those comments so often. The two most nails on chalkboard ones:

"We have no competitors" --> Therefore you are not doing something interesting or in an interesting space.

"These estimates are conservative" --> No clue what it really takes to get revenue

"Nobody can do what we do because we have a patent" --> Doesn't understand intellectual property or the patent process

Sometimes I've seen products that have no competitors yet. Twitter was like that when it first came out. There really was nothing else like it at the time.

Almost all always fatal: Bankers, NDAs, 5 Year plans, trademarks, copyrights, software patents, eponymous companies, grandiose titles, outsourced tech, early lawsuits, 5-year plans.

You said 5 year plans twice. You must like that one. :)

Actually, I've gone into a meeting without a pitch deck.

There's no point in pitching if there's no chemistry.

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