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PowerPoint Tools and Tutorials for Audience Interaction

Audience interaction is important to any presentation. Audiences like to feel involved in the discussion, especially in an age where technology allows everyone a platform to share their voice. Don’t be afraid to open the proverbial floor and let your audience speak their minds. You will find that their input can take your presentations to a new level. Here are just a few PowerPoint tools and tutorials to help you out.

Add audience insight to your slides

Your former teachers can serve as a great example for audience interaction. As you go along your presentation, ask your audience a few questions here and there. But don’t stop there. Listen carefully to what they have to say and try to integrate it to your discussion. A teacher would usually write her students’ answers on the blackboard. You can do the same thing with your slides.

Step One: Go to the slide where you want to be able to add text during the presentation and head to the Developer tab. If you don’t have it enabled yet, simply click File, head to Options, and choose Customize Ribbon.

developer text box 01

Step Two: Add a Text Box to your slide by choosing developer text box 02 from the Controls group. This text box isn’t like the regular one you’d add when building your slides. This specific function will allow you to type in text even as your presentation plays.

developer text box example

Using this trick will allow you to refer back to your audience’s response. The text you input on a slide won’t disappear even if you jump to the next one.

Get comments, questions, and measure differences in opinion

It’s also important to provide a platform for your audience to share their questions and opinions. While this is an easy task for smaller presentations, it gets difficult when you’re facing a room of 50 people. Luckily, technology now allows you to breach the so-called fourth wall. You can get comments and questions from the audience without picking out each person who raises their hand.

Another way to increase audience interaction is through the use of polls. Your audience is composed of unique individuals and they will have their own viewpoints about certain things. If you want to see how diverse your audience is, or how many of them agree with your discussion, you can ask them to vote in a poll.

There are plenty of third-party PowerPoint tools that will allow your audience to conveniently take part in a fruitful discussion. These are just a few of them:

IQPolls: This tool allows you to ask your audience questions that they can immediately answer using the web browser on their mobile devices. You can ask them to simply write down their thoughts or choose from a voting scale you created. Embedding your poll to Microsoft PowerPoint is easy and you will be able to see real-time results.

audience interaction tool 01

EverySlide: This tool has similar features, but supports presentations made using Keynote and Prezi as well. All you have to do is upload  your deck to the and you will get a link that everyone in your audience can access.

audience interaction tool 03

Presentain: Aside from allowing your audience to take a poll and send in their inquiries, Presentain also allows you to utilize your phone for a number of things. Most notably, you can use it to record your presentation. You can then share the recording online and increase your audience even more.

audience interaction tool 02

SlideKlowd: This program utilizes cloud technology to allow you to conduct polls, receive questions, and even check for attendance. More importantly, it also helps you gather data so you can measure audience interaction.

audience interaction tool 04

Use related videos to enhance PowerPoint deck

Everyone loves a good show. You can keep people interested by showing a few video clips. Videos are a great way to add soft breaks in your presentation, so the people watching you won’t feel overwhelmed by the information you’re sharing. By building interest, you can guarantee that audience interaction is a sure outcome.

Here are a few more tutorials for your PowerPoint-related video needs:


What do you do to increase audience interaction in your presentations? You can utilize technology, or stick with more traditional methods. All that really matters is that you make your presentations as inclusive and discursive as possible.


Featured Image: Cydcor Offices via Flickr

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

Comments: A PowerPoint Tool for Collaborations

In this PowerPoint tutorial, we’re exploring a PowerPoint tool that allows you to add comments to slides. This is different from your own slides’ notes section, which are your comments on your presentations. However, if you want others to put their comments on your deck, make use of this feature.

This is useful if you’re collaborating with several people in preparing for a presentation. Available for PowerPoint 2010 onwards, with the Comments PowerPoint tool, you can annotate slides in a few simple steps:

Step 1

Start by clicking the Review tab. Choose the New Comment icon, which is grouped under Comments.

Comment PowerPoint Tool Step 1: Select NEW COMMENT

Doing so will prompt this box to appear:

Yellow pop-up box where you can type text

Step 2

Type down your comments. When you’re done, just click anywhere on the slide to collapse the yellow comment box.

Step 3 

Place your annotation anywhere on the slide by dragging this icon to your desired location:

comment tutorial 07

comment tutorial 06

You can create as many comments as you’d like. Review all your comments or make changes to any of them with these icons:

Edit Comment, Delete, Previous, Next

You can hide all your notes by clicking the Show Markup icon (which is automatically highlighted when you begin adding comments). You can click it to make all your annotations appear again.

There you have it! The Comments function is simple. It’s a helpful PowerPoint tool to have in your arsenal. You can now easily pass pointers and notes with your team, making collaborations efficient and hassle-free.