PowerPoint Tutorial: Adding Music to Your Slides

Here’s another PowerPoint tutorial to help enhance your slides. We often emphasize the important role of visuals in PowerPoint design. It’s true that adding interesting images and illustrations can help your PowerPoint slides stand out from the typical bullet-ridden slides. But we should also take note of what music and audio can do for your presentation deck, especially if you’re planning to share it online.

Follow this quick PowerPoint tutorial to add music and bring life to your slides:

Step One: Insert Audio

Click on the Insert tab, look for the Media group and choose Audio. From here, you can choose what type of audio you can insert. You can choose to add audio from your computer, from the Clip Art gallery, or record your own. In this PowerPoint tutorial, we’ll focus on music files you’ve already downloaded to your computer.

Once you’ve clicked the Audio icon, choose the Audio from File option. You can then locate the folder where your music file is saved on your computer.

powerpoint tutorial audio

The compatible file formats for PowerPoint are the following:

  • MP3 Audio file (.mp3)
  • Windows Audio file (.wav)
  • Windows Media Audio file (.wma)

Step Two: Preview Music File

Once you’ve selected the music file you want to use, a sound icon that looks like this will appear on your selected slide:

powerpoint tutorial audio icon

Select it and a small box will appear where you can press Play. Use this step to check if your music file is working how you’d like it.

Step Three: Assign Playback Options

PowerPoint allows you to choose several playback options for the music file. Select the sound icon and go to Audio Tools. From there, you can choose any of the following playback options:

  • Choose Automatically if you want your music file to start playing as soon as you reach the slide where it’s placed
  • Choose On Click if you’d rather start the audio by yourself
  • Choose Play Across Slides if you want your music file to keep playing throughout the presentation
  • Choose Loop Until Stopped if you want your music file to play continuously until you move on to another slide

Optional Step: Hide the Sound Icon

If you’re planning to share your presentation deck online, you can also choose to hide the sound icon. After you’ve set your music to playback automatically, select the sound icon again. Go back to Audio Tools and tick the Hide During Show check box grouped under Audio Options.


This PowerPoint tutorial allows you to explore a way to add a new dimension to your presentation deck.

At the same time, choose audio that will help enhance your pitch, rather than detract audiences from your pitch.

Like images, this sensory tool is there to aid your key points. Don’t let it distract people from what you’re trying to say. Taking your PowerPoint slides to the next level doesn’t have to be complicated.


Featured Image: kev-shine via Flickr

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