Awesome PowerPoint presentations usher in what everybody desires: the attainment of goals. These presentations—if prepared and administered efficiently—are worth more than millions especially to big brands. Of course, the results are mirrored on smaller brands.

That said, it’s worth investing time and effort to create a well-crafted PowerPoint presentation. Why? These tools while primarily used for marketing, are geared towards effective communication. If they are utilized wisely, they can catapult a company’s sales performance for the long haul. Consequently, ballooning sales volume translates to business growth.

This is a simple guide on better PowerPoint presentations:

1. Simplify.

2. Tell a story.

3. Clarify points within the body.

4. Have a grand finale. Incite action. Solicit emotions.

Let’s usher in more detailed explanations about the guide above.

  1. Draft your talk. Create an organized draft. You’ll use it as basis for your PowerPoint presentation.  
  2. Organize. Lay down a plan. Base on your draft, draw up a plan on how to create your presentation. The principle at work here is similar to the one used in making movies. Draw up an illustration board, even just on a piece of paper. (I’m serious, you can use any kind of paper.) Boards guide you to arrange your slides in an organize manner. You might think it’s a waste of time; on the contrary, it facilitates the process. Next, on your board, create sketched frames. On each frame, you sketch how your graphics will appear. Make it detailed. Include a space where you will put the text.
  3. Make clear, easy to understand frames which are not boring. Remember these points: aim to have a clear message using graphics, make sure your letters are legibly printed, use appropriate colors, use visuals that will help ignite interest from your audience, make sure your slides enhance your talk rather than diminishes it’s impact, pacing must be just right. Not too fast and not too slow.
  4. Go directly to the point. Follow this guide:  Don’t over introduce your presentation, have an intro that is short, yet thorough, and after the intro, go straight to your main topic. Your presentation should not veer away from the core of your topic. One of the most common mistakes of PowerPoint presentations is that they branch out to other topics that are not at all connected to the main focus of the presentation.
  5. They should enhance your talk. Always remember, your PowerPoint presentation is a tool to help you get across your message. It’s not the star of the show, your message is. So don’t make the mistake of making your PowerPoint presentation drown your star. It should act like a supporting actor in a movie. He makes the lead star shine even more. He enhances his character.
  6. Use strong visuals. Your visuals should be big enough for the size of your audience. If you have a way to check your venue, go check it before you create your visuals. In business circles, this is known as actual ocular inspection or AOI. Doing this will help you decide on what font size to use and the right size for your graphics. It will also help you plan on how big your body gestures should be. The standard is, the bigger the audience, the bigger your gestures should be.

Here’s a simple guide:

  • Easy to identify
  • Easy to comprehend
  • Connect the ideas, words, symbols, graphics, graphs, and other elements you will use in your talk.
  • If you are weak on graphics, I suggest you hire a good graphics artist. Remember, as Frederick R. Barnard said, “A picture paints a thousand words.”
  • Use appropriate colors, shapes and internationally accepted symbols.

Here are some more insights about PowerPoint presentations: In conversations, you may metaphorically dance with the thoughts of whom you’re talking with. This will help you formulate thoughts; but in a PowerPoint presentation, you’re on the spot. Fail to deliver a clear and easy to remember message and your audience will go home confused and your reputation tarnished.

So what makes an awesome PowerPoint presentation?

  • Your audience understands your topic much better.
  • They remember the main points.
  • They are inspired to take action (this is the emotional response you desire).
  • The audience is equipped to share your message (i.e. your message is crystal clear and concise, therefore it’s easy to remember and to share).

To summarize everything, awesome PowerPoint presentations are short, punchy, and clear.

These tricks will be able to help you as they had helped me in overcoming fear of public speaking: 7 Little Tricks To Speak In Public With No Fear

Featured photo credit: p_a_h via Flickr

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