Using a PowerPoint presentation in pitches, meetings, conferences, etc. is a great way to explain a concept.
The thing is, have you been using it properly? Whether you’re using it correctly or not, your presentation says a lot about you as a presenter.
Overreliance on Templates
Microsoft PowerPoint comes with templates ready for your presentation. Aside from these, there are also online templates you can download to the program.
These templates offer you the advantage of creating slides with consistent designs requiring minimal effort. All you have to do is copy-paste the information that you want to present.
With these benefits, it may seem like using ready-made templates makes more sense than resorting to unique, personalized ones. Well, if you’re a person who prefers to take shortcuts, then indeed it does. But if you are the type who won’t settle for less, then you know that cookie cutter templates don’t create as much of a lasting impact.
Too Much Text
The thing about slides is that they help presenters describe their ideas – visually. Using too much text to do so kind of defeats the idea.
Filling you slides with texts would leave your audience thinking either of these things: You are too lazy to sort out the most important details of your topic or, as speech trainer George Torok says, you plan to read from them. Both of which aren’t exactly putting you in a good light.
As much as your slides should be able to speak for themselves, there should be room left for your own voice. Allow yourself to explain your key points. Leave out details that you can say verbally. Your listeners will appreciate it more than seeing you read from a wordy slide.
Poor Choice of Images
Imagery can make it easier for you to explain your points. Be very careful, however, on your choice of images. Make sure that you only use high-quality photos that won’t become blurred or pixelated when projected on a large screen. Avoid using clip art as well.
Sure, images are extremely useful. But they also need to be relevant and of professional quality. You can’t use just about any image that you find using Google search.
It gives the impression that you don’t care enough about the quality of your presentation and by extension, your audience. Instead, invest in stock images from sites that provide them for free. You can find a quality image that fits your pitch much better there.
Your PowerPoint presentation is an awesome tool. It provides you with a way to not just explain your message clearly but also to assert your professionalism and credibility.
This means you need to pay attention to the way you prepare your slide decks.
Otherwise, you’ll end leaving a not-so-good impression on your audience, which leaves the potential of a winning presentation untapped.
“Annoy Your Audience: Read Your PowerPoint Presentation Slides.” Torok. Accessed June 09, 2014.
Featured image by eye-socket from DeviantArt