Seven Tips for an Effective PowerPoint Presentation

No matter the topic, using a PowerPoint presentation can be an effective way to communicate, interact, and make a lasting impression on your audience. Here are seven tips to help you create a more engaging and effective presentation.

  1. Design
    When building your presentation take advantage of the slide master feature, this will allow you to create a consistent design structure throughout the presentation. While it may be fun to add textures and background patterns, it is distracting and reduces your audience ability to read the slides.
  2. Titles
    Titles should be engaging and should explain what the slide is about. The most effective headlines describe what the topic is and why it is important for your audience.
  3. No paragraphs, have a script instead
    There is nothing worse than when a presenter simply reads the text off the screen. Instead of long text paragraphs limit the number of words on each slide to key phases, important topics to highlight, and essential information. Remember the slides are for your audience not for you. If you are not comfortable speaking without a guideline create a script.
  4. Graphics
    Power Points are visual tools. Limited words are always best practice for Power Point presentation. Pictures, charts, and graphs can say much more.
  5. One slide one topic
    Don’t try to cram everything on to one slide, think of it is as one thought per slide.
  6. Animation
    Animations, special effects, and sounds are fun to use but be careful not to over use them as they can be distracting. If you are going to use them keep them simple.
  7. Engage
    Remember the presentation is about the information the presenter has to convey, the slides are there just for background and emphasis. Always engage your audience, ask questions, be clear, and be concise. You are telling a story, with a beginning (where we are or where we were), a middles (where we want to go or where we went), and an ending (how we got there or how are going to get there). 

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