PowerPoint is one of the most widely used programs in the Microsoft Office productivity suite, alongside other programs such as Word and Excel. According to estimates provided by Bloomberg Business in 2012, the slide presentation software holds a market share of 95%, with installations on more than 1 billion computers and an estimated usage rate of 350 times per second throughout the globe.
We’ve all been there, despite the popularity of PowerPoint: a presenter droning on in front of a presentation that was sloppily prepared, with typefaces that didn’t match, text that was in the wrong place, and visuals that weren’t aligned properly. Both the audience and the speaker are affected, which is why we have prepared the following ten suggestions and tactics to spice up your next presentation and make it more interesting for everyone involved. If you follow even a few of these suggestions, there is a chance that you may change the outcome of your PowerPoint presentation for the better.
1. Considering that we are talking about screenplays, write one. Don’t start working on your PowerPoint presentation without first formulating a game plan. Because the objective of a presentation is to demonstrate and elaborate on what the speaker is going to say, being aware of those objectives from the outset can assist the speaker in visualizing the material in a manner that is both more efficient and effective. Think of it like you’re going to tell a narrative: you need a beginning, a middle, and an end, along with a compelling plot arc that gradually builds up to a climax.
2. Don’t be afraid to make use of a model document. PowerPoint is pre-loaded with a plethora of useful pre-designed templates. If you work for a firm that often utilizes PowerPoint, you should base your slideshow on one of the presentations that has already been given. The moral of the story is that you shouldn’t squander your time attempting to create something entirely new.
3. Reduce the amount of text as much as possible. The temptation to just copy and paste entire paragraphs into your PowerPoint slides may be powerful, particularly if you are stressed for time. However, this practice should be avoided whenever possible. It is important to keep in mind that the purpose of your presentation is to show your argument, not to dictate it. Keep the amount of text on each slide to a minimal, concentrate on creating compelling bulleted lists and eye-catching pictures, and reserve lengthy paragraphs for the Notes part of your presentation.
4. Ensure that all of your typefaces are consistent. Make sure that the font kinds, sizes, and colors of the text that you do put on the screen are consistent with one another. If you decide to make the title on one slide 36 points and red, you need make sure that the pattern is followed for ALL of the headlines in your slideshow. Steer clear of tiny typefaces, which can make things more difficult to see; instead, use black text on light backgrounds, and align words consistently throughout.
5. Make use of photographs of a high grade. Your message should be strengthened and complemented by the use of pictures and graphics; they should not detract from it. Always do quality checks on the photos you plan to use to see how well they will look when projected onto a bigger screen. Also, keep in mind that simple clip art tends to seem simple. In addition, a tangle of several little pictures is likely to be less effective and more confusing.
6. Be careful not to go overboard with the fancy effects. What’s the coolest thing about Microsoft PowerPoint? The transitions, text fly-ins, animations, and audio that can give your slides a more interesting presentation. However, these effects should be kept modest if they are to be used at all. You don’t want to lower the level of professionalism achieved by your presentation by using cheap tricks.
7. Become familiar with navigating your presentation in a manner that is not linear. The only thing that is more excruciating to watch than a poorly executed presentation is a presenter who fumbles through the process of navigating the slides. Putting these helpful quick cuts into practice: N, Enter, Page Down, Right Arrow, Down Arrow, Spacebar, or clicking the mouse will take you to the next slide; P, Page Up, Left Arrow, Up Arrow, or Backspace will take you to the slide before this one. <number> +Enter will take you to a certain slide number, whereas B or Period will display a dark screen. W or Comma shows a white screen; S or + stops or restarts an automated slideshow; and Esc or Ctrl+Break or – finishes a slideshow. W or Comma displays a white screen.
8. Restriction should be placed on the number of slides as well as the message shown on each slide. One slide should be shown for every minute that has been given to your presentation. This is a solid rule of thumb. When giving a presentation, rushing through it will not only distract the audience but also the person giving the presentation, and it will not help you get your point through. The remedy is straightforward: just add another slide to the presentation if you realize that you are trying to include too much information on a single show.
9. Use spellcheck! Misspelled words might be the single most detrimental element to an otherwise flawless PowerPoint presentation. Before presenting the slideshow to anyone, be sure that it has been thoroughly spellchecked.
10. Never read directly from your slideshow, and be sure to vary your voice during the whole presentation. We take back what we just said; reading every word of your slide in a monotone may be much more distracting than having misspelled words. Make use of the slides you have prepared as a springboard for a more in-depth discussion. Ask questions to keep your audience interested. And converse with the audience like you would with a close friend, retaining a tone that is animated and conversational so as to make your presentation, well, animated and conversational.
It is my sincere hope that the following suggestions will assist you in enlivening your next PowerPoint presentation and in avoiding the dread that is associated with dull slideshows. Do you have any queries concerning the additional ways in which productivity and efficiency might be increased? Are you curious about which version of Microsoft Office will serve your needs the most effectively? Get in touch with CMIT Solutions right now.