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Tips For Using PowerPoint for Presentations

PowerPoint is one of the best tools for creating professional, effective presentations. However, to make a lasting impression, you want to keep your presentation concise and on target. While PowerPoint is fairly simple to use, there are some tricks to creating presentations that will engage your audience. Consider these tricks and tips when building your next presentation.

  • Color format. Color can have a large impact on the professionalism and functionality of your presentation. Often in an attempt to make a presentation eye-catching, creators use too many colors or too bright of colors throughout the slides, detracting from the message and a professional appearance. Keep with a consistent color theme, using only a few choice colors.
  • Lighting. Take into consideration what type of lighting will be used during the presentation. If you intend on using the presentation in a dark auditorium, using darker backgrounds with lighter text is appropriate. In a bright setting, use a light background with a darker font.
  • Text. A PowerPoint presentation is generally meant to highlight the overall verbal presentation, not give all the information within the pages. Text should be limited; use short phrases, usually 5-6 words or less per line, with no more than 5-6 lines of text per slide.
  • Font. As with color, stay consistent with your font types, keeping them simple. Intricate fonts can be difficult to read.
  • Bullets. Keep bullet points between 2-5 per slide, with no more than two levels of bullets.
  •  Charts. Use charts sparingly, only when need to emphasize your point. Simple pie or column charts work best. Keep in mind color in charts; colors like red and green that are close on the color chart can be difficult for some people to discern if they are next to each other within a chart.
  • Clip art. While clip art can be useful, be careful that it is not distracting from your message. Art should pertain to the subject and be used only when appropriate.
  • Summary. Always include a summary or conclusion to your presentation. The last slide should conclude the presentation, emphasizing the overall takeaways.

PowerPoint can help you create presentations that are memorable, using visual stimuli to outline and focus your main discussion points. Keep in mind that the real substance or “meat” of your presentation should be in the verbal presentation. Use your Virtual Assistant to help you create professional presentations that will make your next training or webinar a success!

photo credit: garethjmsaunders 

Posted on May 12th, 2014 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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