Are you self-conscious about the way you put PowerPoint presentations together or have you got your debut coming up in the near future? For most people, feeling anxious is all part of and parcel of giving a presentation.
Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be like this as there are plenty of useful PowerPoint tips and tricks out there to make the whole process far less stressful. You’ll be surprised to see how much of a confidence boost you’ll get and things will end up running smoother than they ever have before.
To help you ace your next presentation, we’ve highlighted 6 of the most useful PowerPoint tips and tricks for your convenience. So, just read on to see our PowerPoint presentation tips or head over to our Workplace blog to find some of our other recent articles.
Pre-planning is your best bet for success
Yes, pre-planning. It seems like an obvious place to start but you’d be surprised at just how many people consider knocking up a quick PowerPoint to be the entire pre-planning phase.
By pre-planning, we mean you need to write a script and you should consider this to be the starting point. Think about the purpose of your presentation and who your audience actually is. The last thing you want to do is pop some bullet points on a slide and try to improvise on the fly.
With your script, focus on giving it a beginning, middle, and end. This way, you’ll be able to form a structure like a story that can eventually build towards a crescendo and hammer your main point(s) home.
Break out of the PowerPoint conventions
There are a wide range of PowerPoint tools for users to make use of, but it doesn’t mean you can’t find better if you go looking. For starters, do something interesting with your font by moving away from the overused Calibri, Times New Roman, and Cambria options.
Never, and we mean never, use the PowerPoint action sounds. They’re awful and your audience simply won’t understand or appreciate their inclusion in your presentation.
Remember your script? Well, think about whether you actually need to have every point you want to get across listed in bullet form. Going overkill on your bullets will work against you in the long run.
Don’t go overboard with your image selection
There’s no doubt that selecting the right images is extremely important and one of the more obvious PowerPoint presentation tips and tricks. But, what many presenters fail to understand is that less if more when it comes to images.
Keep your images saved for big moments or when you’re trying to convey important information that you’d like remembered. However, most importantly, never use the bog-standard PowerPoint clip art as it lacks quality and won’t add anything fresh to your presentation.
Make sure everything is of the highest quality
Following on from our previous point, make sure that the images you select are of an extremely high quality. Grainy or pixelated images will reflect badly on your presentation and you at the end of the day.
But, don’t stop improving your presentation’s quality after finding some high-res images. If you’re using audio, make sure the files are an extremely high bitrate. This is especially important is you’re presenting in a large space with a big speaker system.
Additionally, if you’re importing external graphics or templates, make sure that they’re of a high resolution too.
Keep your audience engaged
You’re the one giving the presentation, so why wouldn’t your audience be engaged, right? Well, if left to sit silently, humans have a habit of switching off no matter who they’re listening to.
The solution is simple: ask your audience a lot of questions and don’t rush into the next slide without leaving a pause for everyone to take in what’s been said.
Clean and simple is a winning formula
There’s simply no excuse in having cluttered slides, badly-aligned elements, odd colours, too many shapes, and everything else in between. It’s these kinds of details that can distract your audience and take attention away from the points you’re trying to get across.
On the other hand, a clearly formatted simple slide will be received extremely well by your audience. Think long, uneven sentences versus neat rapid fire bullet points. The bullet points are going to win every time as people aren’t interested in reading reams of uninspired text.
Have you got questions about one of the PowerPoint tips and tricks we’ve listed here or do you need help with something Microsoft related? Get in touch with a member of our team today or visit our Workplace blog to read more of our latest articles there.