How often do you sit through a boring, lifeless and drawn-out slideshow? Worse, how many times have you had to give one? Bad PowerPoint presentations happen to many people and typically it is just a case of the presenter not having enough knowledge or information when it comes to creating a professional PowerPoint design. Below are some suggestions for jazzing up your PowerPoint presentations to keep your audience engaged.
Hook and Reel Them in
A good presentation will grab the attention of your audience, hook them and reel them in for more. To do this, start your presentation off by presenting something that is intriguing or surprising. You want your slides to stir the emotions of your audience and get them to take notice. Offering an incentive for watching the entire presentation is a good example. Follow through with the incentive at the end, however.
Do not overcomplicate your presentation by adding too much text or flashy images. By doing this, you risk having your viewers tune out. Slides filled with bizarre transitions and loud images start to look like wallpaper after awhile. Your viewers’ eyes will glaze over. Keep your professional PowerPoint design clutter free with one or two images to sell your idea. Avoid bullet points if you can since they tend to be a little cliché, but if you have to add them in, keep them to one line each.
Company Logo Placement
Coming back to bullet points, it is common in this approach for presenters to add company logos to every slide. This is done to ensure the identity and brand of the company is carried out through the entire presentation. However, research indicates that redundant information throughout the presentation is distracting to the audience and will only hinder their ability to understand the objective of the presentation. For instance, if you went to see a movie, it would get really annoying if the logo of the entertainment company was openly displayed on the corner of the screen throughout the entire movie. In the same scenario, your logo on every slide will keep your viewers from completely absorbing your full message or story.
Instead, create a live presentation where you become a living example of your brand. Your compelling story, high quality ideas, eye catching visuals and high level of engagement you create will contribute to a compelling brand experience your viewers will remember.
If in your presentation you tend to forget the point you want to come across, you can use graphic visuals to help guide you through your key points. For instance, if your presentation has five fundamental points you want to make, you can try using a photo that can be identified with each point, such as a star. Each point of the star will act as a point reminder.
Your Take Away Message
Your presentation should always express some kind of take away message. This message is the summary of your story or information you presented. It should be a highlight that will stand out to your audience.
Wrap up your story or final statement that points back to your introduction profoundly. Forget the all too common, “Thank you for watching” idiom. Most importantly, be different than other presenters. Be interesting, intriguing and create a professional PowerPoint design that truly stands out from the rest.