The success of your presentation relies so much on how well you prepare. That’s why the days leading up to a big speech can be quite stressful. There’s just so much to accomplish in order to deliver an engaging presentation. First, you’ll need brainstorm and figure out everything you have to say. After drafting your ideas, you have to carefully choose which points are the most significant to your core message. And after all that, there’s still the challenge of designing a memorable PowerPoint deck.
If you’re running the last mile of presentation preparation, we’re here to make things easier for you. Here’s the PowerPoint design process condensed to 7 quick steps:
1. The Internet is the best source for inspiration
If you’re not sure how you want your slides to look like, you can find some inspiration by browsing through these links:
- Top SlideShares – Browse through presentations that were featured in SlideShare’s homepage
- Prezi Staff Picks – Look at the uploads curated by the Prezi staff
- Note & Point – Find inspiration in a gallery of user-uploaded PowerPoint and Keynote presentations
2. Presentation experts have great ideas to share
You can also read the advice of presentation design experts. Read these blog entries for a creativity booster:
- “Martha Graham Showed the World How She Felt” by Nancy Duarte
- “Story structure, simplicity, & hacking away at the unessential” by Garr Reynolds
3. Figure out a general style for your slides
Once you’ve absorbed the best presentation ideas, it’s time to decide what PowerPoint design style to use. You can go for a minimalist design, which focuses on the use of typography and white space. On the other hand, you can choose to have a more image-based PowerPoint deck. Learn more about design basics by reading our Design 101 posts here and here.
4. Start with an analog approach
Take the time to sketch out how you want each slide to look. It doesn’t have to be neat. Just draft out where you want to place different elements to see if everything works nicely. In other words, create a rough storyboard first.
5. Think of what your audience wants
You should also consider what your audience wants to see. Try to look at your presentation through the eyes of the audience by asking these four questions.
6. Focus on a single task at a time
You might think multitasking is an efficient way to finish your presentation, but it’s not. When designing your slides, focus on one thing at a time. If you have to look for images, do it before typing your content and arranging the layout.
7. Remove any distraction
Aim for an uninterrupted PowerPoint session. The less you bother with other things, the faster you’ll finish designing your slides. But since you’re working on your computer, distraction is easy to access. Stop yourself from checking your email or social media accounts. Switch off your phone if you can. If you need extra help, you can make use of tools like StayFocused to block distracting websites.
You can ensure a great outcome if you take the time to prepare all the details of your presentation. Follow these 7 tips to create PowerPoint designs that are effective and memorable. You can also work with a PowerPoint design expert to get the best results.
Featured Image: UVF Graphic and Digital Design program via Flickr