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3 Ad Agency Tips for Better PowerPoint Visual Designs

There are three elements to consider in PowerPoint visual designs: a slide title, an image, and a caption (or body text). Using any of the elements is the key to making an effective sales presentation. To make a proper combination of these, here are three tips to follow:

1. Something Needs to Be the Star

Effective presentation slides, like print ads, use what creativity mentor Luke Sullivan calls one dominant element. It can be a large piece of text, a big visual, or even white space. Regardless of the combination you choose, make one of these the first thing that your audiences see once the slide comes up on screen. Will your slide need a dominant picture? Will you highlight one big word?

Pick one tactic, and make the rest of the elements work in tandem with it to get your point across faster to your audience.

2. Establish Your Own Look

Sullivan suggests that every brand has its own look, a distinct personality. Macs are simplistic. BMW’s are cool. Nike products are sporty, and Volkswagens are practical. To establish your own image, look to your own company’s brand.

Can you tag an encompassing description for it? How would you like your clients and customers to see it?

Being different in terms of PowerPoint design means making a unique slide and presentation style. This makes your pitch more memorable, letting clients associate your product with your own company. Once this happens, your competitors will have a hard time trying to outsell you without looking like you.

3. Try to Be Cute or Funny (Only If the Idea Calls for It)

There are times when your presentation idea gives you room to be adorable (if you’re pitching for pet or baby products, for example). This was an approach used by the print ads of Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) and Hansaplast Anti-Sweat Foot Spray.

Always try to take a backward spin on such opportunities. This makes your proposed product more noticeable and, possibly, more appealing to clients. As a word of caution, doing this relies on very specific “ifs”:

If your presentation idea calls for it, as with the case of the SPCA and Hansaplast foot spray ads, or if you have time for it, similar to how Steve Jobs showed a gag iPhone image before showing the actual iPhone in 2007.

Summing It Up

Mastering all three tips is something that happens over the course of several presentations. Emphasize one thing in your slide so that your audience has something to focus on. Create a unique look for your brand so that you won’t be mistaken for anybody else.

Lastly, you can try to add a humorous or cute spin, but only if you can justify this tactic. Once you’ve gotten the hang of these, people will start remembering your pitch, enough for you to start seeing an increase in sales.

To help you get a grasp of them faster, get in touch with a presentation design specialist for free!

 

References

Coloribus.com. Accessed August 14, 2015.
Sullivan, Luke. Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This: A Guide to Creating Great Ads. 3rd ed. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2008.
The Secret to Defining Your Presentation Ideas and Style.” SlideGenius, Inc. May 05, 2015. Accessed August 14, 2015.

3 Title Slide Tips for Great PowerPoint Presentations

Though we’re told not to, our basic instinct is still to judge a book by its cover. First impressions last, and bad ones are harder to shake off. Even if you want to assume the best in your audience, it pays to make your slides leave lasting impact from the get-go.

Here are three ways to spice up your introductory slides:

1. Come Up With a Memorable Title

Like with books and movies, your success rests heavily on your deck’s title. A good title is short but memorable, while embodying your presentation’s main theme and core message.

Creative use of analogy or metaphor can further complement your message. It’s also important to have a variety of choices. Instead of tinkering with one title and changing the words around, write down many different ideas to give yourself more to choose from. Your title tells your audience what your presentation is about, allowing them to better prepare themselves to receive your message, and to respond well to your presentation.

2. Use a Visually Arresting Image

When you’re expected to keep the amount of text down to a minimum, you can’t afford to go all out with descriptions in your very first slide, can you? A single photograph, illustration, or graphic will do.

You don’t have to fill the whole space with one image. Applying the rule of thirds and leaving white space to relax the audience’s gaze will make your title slide look more refined and tasteful. With the help of your title, the image can easily connect with your audience.

3. Put Your Logo in There

It’s important to have your logo as one of the first things your audience will see. After all, the logo is the ideal visual representation of your company story. This is especially true if you have some solid brand equity in your sleeves.

If you wish, you can use it in place of your name and company, further lessening the amount of text in your opening slide. There’ll be multiple chances for you to be properly introduced throughout your speech. You can even animate your logo to increase the impact.

Summing It Up

The best works of literature can transcend lazy design and still deliver despite an appalling cover. When too much rests on the line, however, make sure you’ve got it perfectly from the very beginning. Make your title appropriate for your pitch, but unique enough that people will remember what it was called even months after it’s over.

When you don’t have the luxury of a high word count, use strong visuals to make your point instead. Lastly, your pitch is all about what you company can offer, so don’t forget to put your company logo in your title slide so that your audiences will instantly see it as soon as you begin presenting.

With a great start, you’ll definitely get excellent results. The more your audience remembers your great PowerPoint presentations, the more likely they’ll call you up and seal a business deal with you.

 

References

Consider the Eyes: White Space in Great Presentation Design.” SlideGenius, Inc. May 14, 2015. Accessed August 14, 2015.
Evele, Nathalie. “Is It Human Nature to Judge?Centre for Journalism. May 7, 2013. Accessed August 14, 2015.
PowerPoint Lesson: The Rule of Thirds in Slide Design.” SlideGenius, Inc.. November 10, 2014. Accessed August 14, 2015.

3 Ways Professional PowerPoint Designs Prioritize Audiences

Great public speaking skills can only get you so far. Whatever your presentation’s purpose, your structure and content should put it to action.

Redefine your slide deck as a visual aid – it’s actually a vehicle for your message to get across and convince your audience. Unfortunately, presenters often make the mistake of relying on the slide deck to cater to needs and fill in for flaws. The true secret is to design your slides with your audience in mind.

But don’t worry. Getting there isn’t as hard as it seems. Here are the three most important foundations for creating professional PowerPoint designs.

1. One Message Per Slide

Scientists like to compare the human mind to a machine or a computer. This doesn’t mean you should treat your audience like a network of robots. Not everyone can retain chunks of new and unconnected information in the span of a pitch.

Avoid needlessly padding out your deck. Unless your purpose is to confuse your audience, then keep your slides clean, with only one main point in each one. This ensures that the crowd won’t be too tired from seeing oversaturated slides while giving them more time to digest your message. The less an audience needs to understand, the more likely they are to understand it.

2. Show, Don’t Tell

This has worked for novelists and filmmakers alike. As visual learners, people are more likely to retain information when presented visually than verbally.

Why resort to words when you can tell a story with a single picture? Whenever you can, replace text with visuals or graphics, including charts, graphs, and diagrams. Here’s a warning, though: don’t overdo it and keep adding photos and graphics for no reason.

Visuals are best used as a tool to support your points and to accomplish your set goals.

3. Keep the Fluff Out

We can’t stress this hard enough: simplicity is key. Take a cue from Professional PowerPoint designers who do this for a living. Having extra information doesn’t add any credibility, and can unnecessarily drag out your deck.

Novice presenters often cram their slides with information so that they can use the deck as speech notes. Your PowerPoint deck is tailored for your audience to better understand what you’re trying to say, not to act as your cue card. Let your core message come through with the absence of extraneous clutter.

Conclusion

Whatever your purpose is, simplify your structure to best inform, engage, and persuade. The most common culprits keeping you from succeeding are the ones we’ve just discussed. Put only one message per slide so that your audience doesn’t get overloaded with information.

Use images wherever possible to represent your ideas or data, as visuals have been proven to be more effective for information retention. Lastly, keep your slides simple to save yourself and your audience time. This lets you remove any distractions from your pitch’s core message.

No matter what happens, consider your audience as the primary benefactors of your deck to better interest and convince them.

 

References

The Visual (spatial) Learning Style.” Learning Styles. Accessed August 13, 2015.
Visual Simplicity Is Captivating in Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. September 30, 2014. Accessed August 13, 2015.

2 Tips on Using Long Text in Professional PowerPoint Designs

Contrary to the presenter’s rule of keeping your slides simple, there are special exceptions when you can use long text in your visuals, even for a professional PowerPoint design.

There’s one standard to apply when doing this, a specialty practiced by the makers of the Volkswagen print ads: make it interesting.

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Justify the Long Text with an Idea

In his book, Cutting Edge Advertising, Jim Aitchison explains how your text should have an interesting idea to justify its length. This is often the case when you have a good story to tell. This is not to say that it’s justifiable to copy and paste your entire story into a single slide. After all, PowerPoint should be used as a visual aid, not a script.

A good way to balance this is to make the text work well with your slide designs, similar to how the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals made their print ads. These featured a cat and a dog holding a list of things they promise their new owners if they were to be adopted.

Critics often tell you to avoid using lists and bullet points, which is usually a good idea to follow. But while the list in the example is lengthy, the idea is based on the insight of annoyances pet owners have to deal with. This insight is relatable enough to its target readers, and the idea is strong enough to present a solution to the pet owner’s problems.

If you have a sales presentation idea that your clients can relate to, you already have an advantage over the competition, if only because you give the impression that you understand their problems and want to help solve them.

Write the Text Well

There’s a difference between making a text-heavy slide and a well-written story. While disguising a print ad as a news article may work for broadsheets and possibly for presentation handouts, the same can’t be said with PowerPoint slides.

If you have an interesting story to tell and you want your audience to remember the keywords, balance them with a visual and an interesting headline, similar to how Timberland and Volkswagen did their new ads. For slides, focus on your narration and fade in the text with simple animations as you speak. You can also alter the fonts to highlight what you want your audiences to remember.

While there are exceptions that call for using long text, remember that even this needs to be presentable for a professional presentation. To help you get the most of this, getting the help of a professional PowerPoint design specialist can help you gain the advantage you need.

 

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References

Aitchison, J. Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall, 2004.
Reduce and Simplify Like a PowerPoint Professional.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed August 10, 2015.
Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals(SPCA): “ROTTWEILER” Print Ad by Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore.” Advertising Archive. Accessed August 10, 2015.
Sullivan, L. Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This! A Guide to Creating Great Ads. Hoboken, NJ – J. Wiley & Sons, 2008.

Professional PowerPoint Designers and Cost-Effective Results

PowerPoint has become a standard in today’s business communications. It’s used in any type of industry, from startups to big-scale. Although it helps convey messages, professionals tend to use this tool by following a standardized format: stagnation.

A stagnant medium means everything looks the same. Everyone starts to rely on templates, and no one stands out. While PowerPoint’s user-friendliness makes it easy to create slides for any type of presentation, that also makes it more susceptible to uninspired decks.

However, there are some experts in the field who are equipped with the proper skills and knowledge to pull off a stunning deck for their clients. Availing the services of these professional PowerPoint designers can help you rise above the rest. Here’s why:

Professional Slides Make You Look Good

A team of dedicated and experienced designers, copywriters, and marketing consultants give you the best presentation deck possible, ensuring you always look your best. Designs are custom-made to suit your company’s needs, while still being in line with your image and branding.

With this important responsibility off your shoulders, you can breathe easily and concentrate on your responsibilities as the presenter.

Save Time and Money

Having a professional team means you can get your slides whenever you need them.

If you’re usually in charge of making your own slides, you can instead put your efforts into something more productive. If you’re in charge of a team, you won’t have to disrupt the process or wait for a member to be free to start your deck.

Having to occasionally design presentations in-house disrupts an employee’s regular workflow. According to Demand Media’s George Root III well-planned task delegation is necessary for more efficient work output. This means that you need experts in the specific fields for faster, optimized work.

Outsourcing a team of professionals on standby means your people can concentrate on what they do best: working to further improve your product or service. With disturbances gone, office efficiency is boosted, saving both time and money.

Increase Returns

Nothing beats output done by experts. When you hire professional PowerPoint designers, your presentation’s quality will always match that of your company’s, allowing you to convert more opportunities into revenue and making your business grow.

Amazingly well-made decks ensure consistent positive feedback, maximizing returns for you and your company.

Conclusion

No matter how good of a presenter you are, you’ll always need a presentation deck that reflects your skill and talent, as well as those of your team and your company’s brand message.

Though they have become too standard for their own good, PowerPoint presentations are still your gateway to effective business communication. Hire a professional PowerPoint designer now and make your business stand out.

Still unconvinced? Contact us now, and let our team of professional PowerPoint designers change your mind.

 

References

Root, George. “Importance of Teamwork at Work.” Chron. Accessed July 24, 2015.
Your Brand Should Be In Your PowerPoint Designs.SlideGenius, Inc. July 8, 2014.

PowerPoint Visual Design Tips From Ads: Text & Image Balance

Text-heavy slides are a common PowerPoint deck problem. That’s why you should rely primarily on visuals for your business presentations, keeping text to a bare minimum with simple labels and lists. This gives you more room to talk about your pitch.

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Should text dominate your slide or will an image do on its own?

Deciding the text’s length, the image’s position, and the kind of image to use are also problems shared by presenters and advertising agencies alike. According to renowned author, Jim Aitchison, it’s best to use a single-minded approach: either the visual or the text must dominate the image.

The Postcard-or-Letter Method

The postcard-or-letter method is a choice between using a visually-led execution with a short piece of text, or a mostly text-based advertisement that still uses a visual. Consider the image and text sizes, as well as the elements’ location in your PowerPoint visual design to pull off a similar effect.

1. Image Size vs. Text Size

Simple and minimalist executions like Burger King’s Fiery Fries print ad use a dominant visual with a small piece of text. This works best for postcard-style announcements or for making a point for your business presentations.

For the opposite method, let the text occupy a dominant portion of the frame, as with the XO Beer print ads. When using the letter style, you need an interesting story to tell about your product, or an engaging activity that lets them imagine something interesting.

2. Location, Location, Location

Positioning is a crucial visual factor. To make your point clear, place your images in the middle to make them more prominent.

For comparisons, place two images side-by-side, similar to how Aitchison cites the Kaminomoto hair grower print ads. In other cases, let people see the image in the middle and your text below it, just like the early Volkswagen ads. Make either the text or image more dominant than the other or your slide will distract your audience.

The Point: Show Less to Talk More

Be as minimalistic as possible. Your PowerPoint slides only have room for a dominant visual or piece of text, not all the images or words in the world. Decide whether you need to make a point or compare yourself with the competition. Then, choose which element will get your audience’s interest, and decide where to put it to best get their attention. It’s not about how much content you can cram into your slides, but how you can use what little you have to convince your clients to do business with you.

To help you maximize your visuals and text for your business presentations, try to get in touch with a professional PowerPoint presentation designer today!

 

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References

5 TED Talk Secrets for Persuasive PowerPoint Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed July 22, 2015.
Aitchison, J. Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall, 2004.
XO Beer. Neil French. Accessed July 22, 2015.

3 Effective Tips for Simplifying PowerPoint Slide Designs

We’ve said before that simple slide designs are every professional presenter’s bread and butter. Whether they’re TED Talk speakers or Steve Jobs, all of them rely on slides that feature one visual and one caption, allowing them to get their point across clearly.

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These slides aren’t used as scripts. After all, professional presenters use them to help the audience visualize what they say while they use an informal, conversational tone. According to brand communications expert, Carmine Gallo, they also support their speech with at least three important points centered on a main idea.

While we can talk about the benefits of simplified PowerPoint slide designs, it’s also important to know exactly how to do them.

Ad veteran Luke Sullivan cites top advertising professionals as those who make simple, effective advertisements by boiling them down to one main element.

Three Simple Questions to Answer

A typical PowerPoint slide contains an image, a headline, a caption, body text, and sometimes lists and bullet points. While they contain the information you need, slides like these can end up overloaded and confusing.

Reduce your slides to the essentials with these questions:

1. Can You Make Your Slide Work Without the Body Text?

Pasting text on the slide and reading it out ends up alienating you from your audience and cutting potential for interaction with them.

Don’t recite a script. Instead, tell them a compelling story and giving them reasons to invest in your proposal. Remove the text from your slides if your visuals can work without them, no matter how well-written they may be.

This will make your layout cleaner and let you talk more. Your presentation is there to help your audience visualize what you’re supposed to say, not give you an on-stage script.

2. Is Your Caption Bringing Any New Information?

Your caption should support your image.

Let’s take a look at one of Gallo’s examples — Steve Jobs presentations. The caption “1000 songs in our pocket” was superimposed with the image of an actual pants pocket to show the iPod Nano’s main feature.

This is similar to author Jim Aitchison’s example of the style used in the Volkswagen ad featuring a lunar landing craft with the caption “It’s ugly, but it gets you there”. These effective captions bring new information that’s not seen in the visual, but if your image can work without it, so much the better.

A print ad for The Economist only had the image of a keyhole with the magazine’s logo at the bottom.

While part of a campaign, this showed that the publication was the key to unlocking useful industry secrets and information that only its readers can enjoy.

3. Do You Need a Title, or Can the Visual Speak for Itself?

Sometimes, presenters use titles on top of their slides to separate different sections.

In theory, this sounds logical, but if your visual can speak for itself, or if you tell your audience what you want to talk about in the next part of your PowerPoint, why use a title?

A simple headline on the slide itself or a single image shown front and center works better.

Ensure that only one element is prominent in your slide. This makes it easier for your audience to read your text, and keeps their attention focused on you.

Keep the Audience’s Eyes on You

You can make PowerPoint slide designs comparable to those used by Steve Jobs and TED speakers by following this principle of simplicity.

This exercise is difficult when you’re tempted to paste everything into your slides. You’re the one giving the pitch, not your PowerPoint. Keep your audience focused on what you say.

To help you make simple but effective PowerPoint slides, all you need is fifteen minutes to get in touch with our presentation experts.

 

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References

Aitchison, J. Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall, 2004.
Gallo, C. The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010.
Reduce and Simplify Like a PowerPoint Professional.SlideGenius, Inc. May 25, 2015. Accessed July 8, 2015.
Sullivan, L. Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This: A Guide to Creating Great Ads (3rd Ed.). Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2008.
The Economist: Keyhole.Adsoftheworld.

Ad Agency PowerPoint Visual Design Tips: Making Your Point

Visual designs contribute the most benefits in PowerPoint presentations, letting audiences visualize exactly what you want them to imagine, be it the client’s current problem, the seriousness of a situation, or a different perspective.

Once you paint a clear picture in your audience’s minds, support that with facts and guide them to the outcome you want: investing in your idea.

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While deck designs don’t only impose mental images, they help clients remember enough of your pitch to take a second look at it after you’re done presenting.

Many TED Talks or three-subject pitches rely on simplicity for catchy PowerPoint visuals. But how do you emulate these works?

Advertising agencies make their ads focus on one main idea and show it in an interesting way.

Here are three PowerPoint visual design tips on simplicity:

Make Your Idea Straightforward Enough to Be Flexible

There’s only room for one main idea in your visuals.

According to ad veteran Luke Sullivan, if you know what your pitch is about and make it straightforward, you’ll have a number of great ways to visually represent your ideas.

In the MINI Cooper ambient ads, the ad agency highlighted one main feature of a small yet spacious car.

Some of the MINI Cooper ambient ads focused on how spacious the small vehicle was, while others went the opposite route and focused on a small vehicle’s benefits. An example of the latter: a billboard that had the tagline “cops hide here,” complete with an arrow pointing to a bush under it.

Whatever the execution, the idea in each was clear. All that was left was to come up with interesting ways to show it.

Focus on One Consistent Style

The early Volkswagen print ads showed a big or small vehicle, then focused the text on a main idea. Renowned author Jim Aitchison cites these ads and taglines as those which highlight the main theme of practicality:

“How to save up for a Porsche.”
A picture of a moon-landing craft with the caption “It’s ugly but it gets you there”
A small Volkswagen beetle with the tagline “Think small”

There’ll always be a consistent style of showing the vehicle, a headline and the body text, all centered on a straightforward idea.

Show a Common Message with Different Elements

Combining your images and text to illustrate a situation is effective, but even more so when you disrupt normal perspectives and present familiar things in a new and interesting way.

The award-winning French anti-illiteracy ads’ visual elements posed as advertisements for different things: cars, computers, even resorts and makeup.

These ads focused on one main message: there’ll always be people who’ll misinterpret the advertisement because they can’t read.

All these three tips rely on one thing: strategy, a single effective path to bringing your message out in the image.

Do you want to highlight how much space your Cooper can have? Do you want to show that your product does what it’s made for? Do you want to show how serious a problem is?

The key to simplicity is making your viewers focus on one dominant element in your visuals. Make your main message clear in both the text and the image, then find interesting ways to consistently prove your point.

It takes an award-winning visual design method to make an award-winning PowerPoint Presentation. To help you get that edge, get in touch with a presentation designer from SlideGenius today!

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References

Aitchison, J. (2004). Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall.
Great V AdsAccessed June 19, 2015.
Maximize the Rule of Three: Brand-Building for Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed June 18, 2015.
Sullivan, L. (2008). Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This: A Guide to Creating Great Ads (3rd Ed.). Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons.
The World’s Best Print Ads, 2012-13.” AdWeek. Accessed June 19, 2015.

Presentation Slides & Titles: 5 Tips on Using Assertions

Have you ever attended any business presentations that used the headers “Background,” “Sales,” or “Conclusion” in their PowerPoint?

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In most decks, almost every slide is guaranteed to have a title.

Your audience’s attention span is short, so make your text clear and concise.

Assertion-Evidence Structure

As cited by Six Minutes’ Andrew Dlugan, Dr. Michael Alley, author of The Craft of Scientific Presentations and a Pennsylvania State University professor, developed the Assertion-Evidence Structure (AES) for better presentation slides.

Assertion is where a complete sentence is placed into each slide title.

The evidence supports the headline with visual designs (ex. pictures, graphs, diagrams, drawings, equations).

Slide titles also help your audience better understand and remember your presentation.

Using Assertions as Headlines

In this post, we’ll focus on five guidelines for planning your PowerPoint slides using assertions.

1. Turn Your Idea into a Statement

PowerPoint is used as your visual aid. It should contain important points that support your actual pitch.

Avoid using titles such as “Sales” and “Conclusions,” as they have no concrete details or information worth remembering.

Keep the title short and clear to so that your audience will understand what it means.

2. Keep It Simple

Make your statement shorter. If possible, condense it to one line and remove any unnecessary words that might confuse your audience.

Include only those that are significant to relay a more meaningful message.

3. Use Larger Text

Never underestimate the power of font size.

To avoid losing your audience’s interest, use 40 point text size for your slide titles, like how newspapers, books, and web pages apply this to capture one’s attention.

4. Use a Consistent Location

Place the title in the slide’s upper-left corner, as it’s the easiest place for your audience to find it.

Your deck’s purpose is to guide your audience, not mislead them.

5. Make It Readable

Make it easier for your audience to read your slide’s text.

This shows that you care about their needs, letting them understand what you’re trying to point out.

It’s better to use san serif fonts for better legibility.

Summing It Up

Using these assertions help you craft clearer presentation slide, increasing your chances of effectively conveying your message to your audience.

To develop clearer and more concise PowerPoint slides, let the presentation experts help you out.

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References

4 Tips to Make Your Presentation Clear and Concise.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2015. Accessed June 18, 2015.
Design 101: Basic Elements of a PowerPoint Deck.” SlideGenius, Inc. 2014. Accessed June 18, 2015.
Slide Title Guidelines: Use Assertions, Not Topics.” Six Minutes. Accessed June 18, 2015.

Advertisers’ PowerPoint Visual Design Tips: Calls to Action

Apart from using PowerPoint visuals to prove your point, you can also use them to make a compelling call-to-action (CTA) at the end of your pitch. After all, people are more compelled to buy what they can see.

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According to ad veteran Luke Sullivan, CTAs work so well because they rely on metaphors, a quick and powerful selling tool.

More than showing what the product is and what benefits it can offer, advertising agencies have used this as a quick and powerful way to communicate to customers.

How It Works

Most people learn by associating images with concepts, which is why we equate dogs to loyalty and red colors to extreme emotions.

Concepts convey your message in one picture so you don’t have to rely on copying and pasting text.

The Harvey Nichols clothing sale print ad showed an image of pelicans crowding around a piece of fish as a metaphor for how people flock to a sale.

This approach, as opposed to showing actual people crowding over one outfit, was a more creative way of emphasizing the kind of customer demand that their brand had.

Presenters can apply metaphors to PowerPoint visual design in the same way.

Once again citing Sullivan, is there a way to graphically represent your own product? Or can you offer a different perspective on a familiar concept, similar to how Volkswagen used a picture of King Kong in pain to describe their car’s durability?

A Compelling Truth

By using a metaphor to present familiar things in an unfamiliar way, problems can be presented to clients by paving the way for your solution.

UNICEF’s print ads presented the gravity of Chile’s education problem.

Three of these ads had criminals pose as teachers, with children as their students, a parody of the regular class picture setup.

Combined with the tagline “a child who learns is an adult who teaches,” the ads showed that children were brought up by criminals and needed proper education to break them out of that life.

An Invitation to Participate

Cleverly crafted visuals encourage reader involvement.

In his book, Cutting Edge Advertising, Jim Aitchison explains that since they rely on images and stereotypes that people have built up over the years, advertising agencies twist that message so the customer can make the connection for themselves.

For example, the Comedy Central ad let customers fold a page to create funny scenarios, giving them a sense of how funny the show really was, and that if they wanted more, all they had to do was find it.

A Presenter’s Advantage

This process continues as people grow. Building your own standards extends to choices and purchase decisions.

Using visual metaphors in your sales presentations aren’t limited to dated pop culture references, but also include visible archetypes, as with the Harvey Nichols ad, or police cars hiding in bushes, similar to the MINI Cooper ad.

Use relevant images and present them with a fresh perspective to get clients to invest in your proposal.

To get the best advantage for the visuals in your presentation deck, take some time to talk to the right presentation partners!

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References:

Aitchison, J. (2004). Cutting Edge Advertising: How to Create the World’s Best Print for Brands in the 21st Century. Singapore; New York: Prentice Hall.
Always End Your Business Presentation with a Call-to-Action.” SlideGenius, Inc. May 27, 2015. Accessed May 28, 2015.
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Featured Image: “James Whitcomb Riley” from Wikimedia Commons