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14
aug

How to Present to Senior Management (9 Tips Every Executive Would Agree With)

how to present to senior management - presentation tips for impressing upper management - executive presentation

Presenting to executives can be exciting BUT these presentations can also be pretty intimidating.

Let’s face it … senior executives can be a tough crowd:

They are often super impatient because their schedules are jam packed — and they have to make lots of high-stakes decisions, often with little time to weigh options. So, if you think upper management is going to sit still and wade through your lengthy deck with some big reveal at the end … THINK AGAIN! They’ll likely just interrupt you before you finish your deck.

Whatever your presentation is about, you won’t go very far if you haven’t prepared intensely for this moment.

That’s why the kind of slide deck you have at your disposal is just as important as your message.

As Eminem once said, you’ve got one shot, and you might not get another one, so here are nine tips to help you make a top-notch slide deck for your big upcoming executive presentation to the senior team.

Let’s get this executive party started!

1. Make THREE Key Points

executive presentation - how to present to senior management - make three points

When presenting to senior management you need to get to drive home your key message FAST.

While the topic you discuss is certainly nuanced and has many sub-topics meant for discussion, an executive presentation is not really the place to get into all the tiny little details.

Think about it this way:

If you had to summarize the whole meeting in three sentences, what would they be?

We’ve mentioned before that the human brain digests information more rapidly when they’re divided into nice tidy morsels of three.

So, if you can stick to three overarching talking points for your executive presentation you have a better chance of impacting your audience before they get too impatient.

Speaking of impatient senior execs, plan for the likely event that someone will hijack the meeting, talk and ask questions for most of it. Your VP didn’t get that far without being the sort of person who is decisive and inquisitive. While you might be the one at the top of the agenda, you’re not calling the shots.

That’s why having three concise points to plan your slide presentation around is so useful.

It makes it easier to stay calm and focused when you have three main points to talk about, rather than worry about remembering, say, six of them. If you go in with three points, your executive presentation is likelier to succeed because your presentation will be more organized, and also because you will be better able to keep everything on track if and when you are interrupted with questions from the higher-ups.

It’s also important that you start your presentation with a BANG and tell the executive team up front what you will be covering.

Doing this will give the senior leaders confidence that you’re going to use their time wisely. That leads us to our next point.

2. Keep your Presentation Short. Senior Executives Have Tight Schedules

keep your senior mangement presention short - executives are busy

Building off of the first point, you should remember that your 10:30 AM slot with your boss (or possibly the boss’s boss) is not the highlight of the day, or even possibly the week, for your audience. They might have a meeting a few hours later with the president of the company, or have some equally trying and stressful task at hand.

If they walk into your presentation and you’re rambling on a bit too much, they are not so likely to pay attention. In fact, they might start to get annoyed, which is the last thing you want.

That’s why you should keep your presentation – and your slide deck – as short as possible.

While you should expect their undivided attention as you talk to them about an issue that you have spent time and energy researching, this does not mean your slide deck should be any longer than normal.

This does not mean you skip over any important details; what it means is that you cut out everything that isn’t important. Ideally, this should give you three points to talk about. Sound familiar?

Execs are impatient, want to get to the point quickly, and are more interested in the key issues than the details. So aim to keep the deck super-short. 2-3 slides might be a crazy small number to have as a presentation in another situation, but it is not too short for an exec.

3. Be Extra Flexible

It’s common for senior executives to ask you to jump back to a previous slide or fast forward through your slides to a particular section of your presentation.

Also, don’t be surprised when executives interrupt you as you present a painstakingly crafted slide with “Got it. Next”.

An extended discussion on a particular slide may mean you need to fly through other less important slides in order to get back on track in terms of covering all of your slides.

Be ready to stop and change directions on a dime.

Heck, in some senior meetings, you may even forgo covering all of your slides because the discussion on a particular aspect of your presentation is going really well.

The key is to be FLEXIBLE and cover what they want to focus on — not necessarily what you want to. In order to achieve your objectives (e.g., more resources, budget, executive support, etc.), you may not need to go through every slide.

Here are a few tips for staying flexible during your presentation to senior management:

1) Know your PowerPoint presentation hacks so you can easily whiz through your PowerPoint deck and come across like a true presentation pro.

2) If your slide deck is running on the longer side, consider designing your presentation so that it has a “Prezi-like” choose your own adventure format. This will allow you to jump to specific sections of a presentation faster than Harry Potter can waive his magic wand.

3) Keep your supporting backup material on hand in case you need to reference something. That leads us to our next point.

4. Be Prepared to Back Up Your Arguments with Supporting Data When Necessary

executive presentation - be prepared to backup your points with facts and data

So, thick presentation decks are the bane of a busy exec’s existence. How do you get around the fact that certain details, especially if you have a lot of data to share, might be referenced over the course of your presentation?

That’s where the “thunk factor” comes in. The “thunk” is the sound a heavy presentation printout makes when you put it on your boss’s desk.

During your executive presentation, you have to be prepared to answer any of the exec’s follow up questions with appendix material. While you might have a super short slide deck with just a couple of slides, this doesn’t mean you have to come shorthanded.

If you have important data to share with your audience, or maybe you have field or case studies that would prove useful to reference, you can supply everyone with a printout that carries your supporting data.

Don’t make the mistake of not being able to answer a senior exec’s question during your presentation. Executives are gifted at finding holes in your logic or content. They want to be sure you understand the consequences and implications, and that they can trust your analysis and recommendations.

5. WOW the Senior Team with Creative Visuals, Charts, Diagrams, and More

presention tips - wow senior mangement with impressive visuals in powerpoint

Like everyone else, execs don’t like boring slide decks!

There’s no reason to give someone a page full of numbers when you can just as well conceptualize it beautifully.

Diagrams help execs to speed-read and get a quick picture of what’s going on. Get creative with how you tell the story of your presentation.

Here are a few ideas for diagrams that will help you communicate the sometimes complex story of the numbers to your not-always-savvy boss:

Pie charts are a classic standby for showing what percentage of the market your company might have, but maybe you can try something a bit less routine. Maybe create a diagram with a colored map of your market, with different color saturations representing greater share.

Flow charts are a fun albeit sometimes messy way of showing cause and effect, like what happens between when a potential customer first signs up for your company’s new product through a blog campaign. Make sure that if you do use flow charts to highlight the most important points, you don’t necessarily have to keep things linear, but you might want to avoid getting as crazy as this flow chart.

Timelines are useful if, for example, you are introducing a new sales plan or major software implementation to your directors or other executive team. The timeline should feature the major dates, if applicable, for scheduled rollouts, and should set tangible milestones which can later be used to judge progress. Ultimately, a good timeline can help you set the baseline for whether or not your project will be deemed a success, so that is why it is a very useful diagram to include in your appendix material.

Pie charts, flow charts, timelines, and maps are just a few of the many outstanding methods for diagramming context to quickly educate executives on the entire situation — and they like it that way. Look for ways to convert text and data into diagrams that show how all the parts fit together.

Need some help designing charts, timelines, and other awesome looking slides for an upcoming presentation to senior management? Our professional “Influencer” presentation template has over 200 delicious slides that you can download to your computer instantly.

Make your executive team love you forever and get your copy now.

6. Keep Your Text Short to Make Your Points Quickly

when presenting to executives - keep your text short

Of course, sometimes you have to write things down, and diagramming simply will not do. Obviously your tool of choice, if it’s not diagrams, are words. When you do have to write, we’ve said before that you should do everything you can to be as concise as possible.

Here are some really useful executive presentation tips to keep in mind when you are brainstorming the display text to use in your slide deck:

1) Execs think fast, process fast, and hate having their time wasted, so write text to enable speed-reading and quick understanding of the thought at hand.

2) Use short phrases and elaborate on them verbally. You should utilize bullet point lists whenever possible, and place each talking point on a separate line. That way, your ideas naturally organize themselves in a manner which is visually easier to process and comprehend. As communications coach Carmine Gallo says, you need to “think twitter like headlines!”

3) A really good tip for writing concisely is to avoid using passive voice. For example, don’t say “market share will increase by 25% because of our marketing plan.” Instead, say “our marketing plan will increase market share by 25%.” Using active instead of passive voice will cut down on fluffy words, which saves vital space on your slide. It also the wonderful effect of making you sound more confident and certain about yourself.

Lastly, another method for dropping a few words is to eliminate basic articles, including “the,” “on,” “and,” and so on.

One of the cardinal sins of any PowerPoint presentation is writing in complete sentences.

For the love of humanity, don’t put full sentences on slides — it slows the presentation down.

Even worse, you will probably end up reading the sentence aloud, which looks and sounds terrible and certainly won’t win you any points with your audience. Longer, wordier sentences are definitely a no-no and should be avoided at all costs.

Hopefully that’s not news to you, but it never hurts to remind people that they should stay away from writing in full sentences. If you can keep your diction short, punchy, and to the point, your executive presentation stands a great chance of leaving your audience with a positive impact.

7. Pay Extra Attention to Slide Hygiene

Executives have high standards — for themselves and others — and quite often are perfectionists when it comes to their work.

They expect the same from you.

Before you deliver your big executive presentation, make a checklist to verify that your slide comes across as crisp and coordinated.

What are some examples of the presentation design errors that drive senior managers crazy?

Spelling errors are totally unacceptable, and considering that Microsoft Word comes with Spellcheck and browser extensions such as Grammarly point out basic spelling mistakes, you have no excuses for the dreaded red spellcheck underlining any of your text (except for company names and jargon, of course).

use grammarly to check your presentation for good grammar

Don’t forget that even the best spellchecker will fail to detect homonyms such as they’re/their or where/were. There’s a time and a place for making those sorts of silly spelling switches, but an executive presentation isn’t one of them.

Grammar errors such as inconsistently placing a period at the end of one sentence but omitting it in the next one are to be avoided. Pick one style and follow through the whole way. The same goes for header weight and size; don’t switch from bold size 16 font on one slide to normal size 16 the next. In a similar vein, avoid inconsistent capitalization in slide titles, different bullets points on different slides, or switched fonts.

Lastly, one of the most annoying problems that creep up from time to time when you are creating a PowerPoint presentation are formatting issues. For example, it’s terribly annoying when for some strange reason the margins are not all completely even, or when you press enter to skip a line but the gap between lines of text is mysteriously larger below than above.

Pay attention to these sorts of little details because the exec is. If you are pitching yourself to lead a bold new project that moves the company in a different direction, how confident do you think an exec will feel if your slide has an annoying tendency to have inconsistent spacing? Don’t give them an excuse to say no to you!

8. Craft a Stunning Presentation

Obviously, as a PowerPoint presentation design website, we’re always going on about how when it comes to design, less is usually more.

It’s so important that your audience is able to focus directly on you and your ideas. A slide deck that is too visually interruptive or busy with images, fonts or colors that compete with each other is not a winning executive presentation pitch.

You know a lot, or you wouldn’t be invited to the meeting. But resist the urge to throw it all up on your slides.

Here’s a few pointers for creating simple yet beautiful slides for executives:

1) Use clean visuals that represent your message with a few key points per slide.

2) Carefully craft meaningful headings that could tell the story on its own. A punch box at the bottom to reinforce your point can also be quite useful. If you can’t come up with a punchy summarizing statement, consider if you really need that slide.

3) As mentioned in tip #1, harness the power of three!

4) Create a consistent theme of colors, fonts, and layout

5) Make sure your slides pass the “glance test” – people should understand your slide in less than three seconds

Of course, these are just a few tips. For a complete arsenal of presentation design tips and resources that will turn you into a PowerPoint pro click here.

9. Know Your Audience

When it comes to presenting to the senior team knowing your audience is an absolute MUST:

How much do the senior team members know about your topic? (i.e., how much time should you spend on providing background information?)

What topics are hot buttons or particularly interesting to the executives based on their current business goals?

Which senior execs would be politically threatened by your recommendations?

What can you find out about their pet peeves or preferences?

So, how do you find out the answers to these questions you might ask?

You need to find an insider who can coach you on how to best present your material to the targeted executive or group of executives.

That person could perhaps be:

* Your boss or executive sponsor

* One of the executive’s direct reports

* An executive’s admin assistant

You’re looking for inside information on your audience so that you can avoid derailing your presentation and wasting everyone’s time.

Conclusion

Ultimately, it’s up to you to make the call when it comes to compiling the best possible slide deck for your upcoming presentation to senior management. This is the sort of opportunity that probably does not come around very often, so prep hard, nail down your three main talking points, keep your slides concise, come equipped with a useful printout full of nifty diagrams to accompany your presentation, and keep your slide design about as conservative as your dress code.

Other than that, don’t forget to smile and be yourself. And maybe give ‘em a firm handshake – that always helps!

I’d love to hear your upper management presentation success stories and what valuable lessons you have learned along the way. If you’re a senior executive, I’d love to hear your perspective as well.

Lastly, do you have a friend that could benefit from learning about these tips for presenting to senior executives? If so, email them the link to this post.

Thanks for sharing and be sure to post this article on Twitter of Facebook as well (by using the sharing buttons to the left).

Finally, if you are looking to create a top quality executive presentation, don’t forget to check out our excellent Influencer slide template deck, and check out some of these other great blog posts in our archive to learn more about creating the perfect presentation.

Photo Credits: iphone calendar by idownloadblog.com

Best PowerPoint Template - Professional PowerPoint Template - Cool PowerPoint Template - Influencer PowerPoint Template

14
feb

This Beautiful PowerPoint Template Will Make You STAND OUT! Introducing Influencer … Panda’s Premier Presentation Template!

 

Top PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template

Greetings, Presentation Pandas! As you know, we’ve been talking about the benefits of professional presentation templates for a long time. Like ballroom dancing, football touchdown celebrations, and Italian sports cars, sometimes presentations need to look fancy, which is when a professional template can really come in handy.

Here are some of the things the best powerpoint templates on the market have to offer:

Save Loads of Time – With a professional template, you can focus more on honing your message and less on building a template framework. Leave the design part to the designers.

Elegant Design – The templates are clean, minimal, and look amazing. That’s EXACTLY what you should be focusing on when you create a presentation.

100% Customizable – A good presentation template is easy to customize. Simply add your text and swap out any images, graphics, or colors that you do not want. It should always be that easy.

Designed for PowerPoint – A good templates is designed to be edited directly in PowerPoint. You do not need any additional software.

Clever Animations Included – Even the best PowerPoint template in the world can look a bit amateur without some slick animations. A good template features custom animations built right into it. And if you decide that animations are not ideal for your presentation, you can easily remove them.

Customer Support – If you ever have any questions about a template you should be able to talk to the person who designed it. Whereas if you design a presentation yourself, you don’t really have anyone else who can help you (unless you’re lucky enough to have an intern you can boss around!) All you need to do is leave a comment and the person who designed the template will get back to you quickly.

Cool PowerPoint Template - Professional PresentationTemplate - Influencer Template (1)

At this point you must be wondering where this is all going; after all, we have recommended several of the best PowerPoint templates around over the years. But still our team of Panda’s felt a strong yearning to create our own MAGICAL template that could take your presentations to the next level. So after many a day and night of diligent work, many cups of coffee, and a veritable landfill’s worth of trash bins overflowing with scrapped designs, we have finally developed a professional presentation template that truly rocks! 

Were calling this amazing template Influencer. Click here to download your copy right now!

In this article, we’re going to explain exactly what this template offers, why it ROCKS and why you need to download it right away to use for pretty much every presentation you will ever make it again.

Are you excited? We sure are! Let’s get started!

How about a video to kick things off …

And now let’s run through the key features of the Influencer PowerPoint Template

200 Uniquely Crafted PowerPoint Slides

Best PowerPoint Template - Cool Presentation Template - Influencer Template

 

Variety is the spice of life, and it’s also critical for creating awesome looking PowerPoint slides. Who wants to see the same boring layout on every single slide? A lot of love and tender care went into making each and every slide–we developed 200 unique slides for you to pick and choose from!!

Yes, we just said 200 slides!

Without coming off as clichéd and overly hyperbolic, the possibilities are pretty much endless. Obviously your next presentation is not going to be 200 slides (or at least we hope not) but we wanted to give you a complete arsenal of good looking slides that you can pick and choose from. We put in a crazy amount of hours to make sure that each and every slide you choose rocks!

There are 12 well organized sections in total; here’s a rundown of what you can expect from each section:

Introduction – Make a positive first impression with an eye-popping display of your company name and logo. Impress your audience with the mission statement template, featuring a half-screen image with your company’s M.O. Or you can include some really cool slides such as a statement from your CEO or a really cool chronological post showing your company’s timeline of growth from past until present.

Free PowerPoint Template - Professional PresentationTemplate - Influencer Template

Team – Show off the members of your team (even if it’s just a team of one) with split screen bio pages that feature headshots of individual members on one side and their accolades, career background, and achievements on the other. You can also include bio pages with multiple team members listed and small bio blurbs beneath each member’s headshot, such as “Bob Smith, Accounting” or “Suzy Jones, Fantasy football junkie and baker extraordinaire.”

Meet our Amazing Team - Animated GIF

Services – You can’t successfully pitch investors or your next big client without talking about what sort of services your company brings to the table. We offer you multiple templates that break down your services in a DYNAMIC manner with the inclusion of customizable infographics. Or you can go for a more informal “what we do” slide that lists your services bullet-style.

Professional PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer PowerPoint Template

Devices – If you are selling a product of some kind, there’s a good chance that it’s an app or other kind of software that runs on a specific device. So we’ve included templates that show off how your app works while running on a smartphone, or how Bluetooth connectivity is part of the package. Yeah, we pretty much thought of everything.

Customer Analysis – If it is really important for your presentation to talk about who your customers are and what sort of demographics they come from, you will really appreciate these slides. The customer segment profile shows a typical customer and features lots of cool icons jutting out of her—kind of like the guy from that classical children’s game “operation,” but without listing parts of human anatomy.

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Portfolio – For agencies or firms that need to include case studies or examples of their work, this section gives you lots of predesigned templates that show off what your team has already accomplished for previous clients. Nothing sells better than experience!

Charts & Tables – Inevitably, you will have to include data in your presentation. That’s why we included templates that show off quantifiable information in a way that –for once!—isn’t boring and stale. All of our graphs are super easy to edit and can be changed directly in PowerPoint.

Business Analytics – You gotta be able to show off what sort of things you do; those numbers are really important, but they should look good when you do it. We have provided slick templates that can be easily edited to include the data that backs up your business.

Cool PowerPoint Template - Best Presentation Template - Influencer Template

Infographics – Everyone loves a good infographic! We came up with tons of really cool ones. A competitor analysis infographic features a honeycomb-shaped graph with alternating colored panels that give away little tidbits of data.

Project Management – Our project management slides help you break down the different ways that your team tackles your work. Beautiful background images combined with simple step-by-step breakdowns help you illustrate how your team will get the job done.

Maps – If you want to include the location of your office near the end of your slide or if it’s important to include map features in your presentation, we’ve given you plenty of sleek looking maps to choose from.

Closing & Other – It’s just as important to go out with a bang as it is to start with one, so we have designed powerful closing slides that feature strong customizable CTAs and inspiring images to convince your audience that you are the right choice for them. We have also included plenty of “bonus slides” including multiple title slide variations.

 

Quality PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template

Size Formats 16:9 and 4:3

Cool PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template

Responsive design is a touchstone of so much that goes into making everything from apps to websites to PowerPoint slides these days. That is why we created templates in two different size formats, so that when you go about the process of setting up your slideshow, you will not have to worry that your sizing is off. Nothing ruins presentations like having slides that are not the proper dimensions for the projector or TV monitor they are being displayed on! You have two options when it comes to size formatting:

16:9, or widescreen. This is becoming the standard for presentations and is actually the default size in PowerPoint. So I imagine that most people will prefer to work with this size format. You will be able to better maximize the dimensions of the media you use in your presentation, which will look so much better. This will look good on any kind of screen, from your laptop to a full-size 52” monitor in the company conference room.

4:3, or square. If you plan on handing out copies of your slide to members of your audience, this is an ideal size. For people who need to print their slides on normal 8.5” x 11” paper this format is preferable as it fills the page better and is a little less awkward than using a 16:9 ratio.

Two Themes – Dark and Light

Awesome PowerPoint Template - Awesome Presentation Template - Influencer

You have two choices when it comes to your theme: light or dark. Depending on the topic at hand you might feel that using a white background will look better and be more suitable for the tone or mood. On the other hand, maybe a dark background will help you stand out better and make for a more impressive presentation. We were not completely sure ourselves which one you would prefer, so that is why we created two themes, so you can figure that part out yourself! The most important thing is that they both look really good, right?

Three Colorful Options for Each Theme

Cool PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Presentation Template

On top of giving you dark and light options for your theme, we also created three different color schemes in both the dark and light theme. That comes to a total of six varying theme color possibilities, if you are keeping score at home. The options you have are red/yellow, purple, and blue. Blue is always a safe bet for more formal kinds of projects and presentations, while purple, red and yellow are a bit more edgy. But maybe edge is what you are looking for? We want to make certain that you have all the options you need to select the best looking theme possible for your presentation. Of course if you have a totally different color in mind you can easily edit the colors of presentation to the color of your choice.

Tons of High Quality Images Included

Pitch Deck Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template

As we have pointed out before, you should absolutely avoid using cheesy stock images at all costs.  There is a good reason that we decided to take care of finding images for you; too many times we have seen people fall victim to picking out weird looking or downright dumb stock images. So we have made sure to include tons of sleek looking commercial free images throughout the entire template. You do not have to trawl endlessly through Google Images or Shutterstock to find good pictures for your presentation; we have done that for you! Besides saving you a ton of time from having to search for the images yourself, we have also ensured that you have nothing to worry about copyright infringement (accidental or otherwise) because all the images we have used in the slide templates either came free to download or we bought the rights to them.

That means that you, too, have the rights to them. Which means that you can edit them as you please At your fingertips are hi-res photos that make for elegant slide backgrounds, or practical stock images that look great as part of your design. It’s all up for you to decide.

And if you want to swap out images it’s super simple. We’ve even included a handy “Help Guide” that shows you how step-by-step. More on that further down below.

Tons of Easy to Edit Vector Graphics

Cool PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Clever Animations - Influencer

There are tons of captivating graphics in this template; everything from presentation graphics to customer analysis data boxes is included. Our designers have made it as simple as possible to pick and choose the vector that best fits your presentation. What’s awesome is that you can easily change the size and colors of the graphics DIRECTLY IN POWERPOINT (no additional software needed), so you don’t need to be some smarmy graphic designer with many years of experience messing around with slides (leave that part to us). When you find the right vector graphics for our presentation it is really easy to insert display text, change the color of the vector, or manipulate the size or placement according to your needs.

Over 500 Ready to Use and Easy to Edit Vector Icons

PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template - 500+ icons

Oh man, we busted our butts on this one FOREVER. The template is filled with sleek and modern looking icons; in fact, we have included a set of over 500 icons that you can choose from. Since the icons are vectors, you can also easily modify the icons by changing the color and size.

You should really see the variety of icons we have available! We pretty much thought of every possible presentation topic or scenario that you would be in when we were cobbling together this huge list of icons. To name but a few:

  • General Icons
  • Technology Related Icons
  • Payment Related Icons
  • Web Related Icons
  • Location Related Icons
  • Arrows and Direction Related Icons
  • Weather Related Icons
  • Social Media Related Icons
  • And Much More

Two Free Fonts That Go Together Perfectly

Cool PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template (6)

You gotta have a good header/display font combo if you’re gonna properly rock your presentation. We picked two fonts that go really well together: Bebas Neue and Calibri. We have been talking about Bebas Neue for years (OK, maybe since last year)! The font rocks and simply had to be in our template. It also sounds kind of funny. We’ll wait while you say it out loud and then laugh because we’re right.

So even though Bebas Neue is a pretty sweet lookin’ font, bro, it does not come with the Microsoft Office suite. Does that mean you have to pay for it? Absolutely not! Bebas Neue is a FREE font that can be easily be downloaded from Font Squirrel. Don’t worry we walk you through how to easily install the font step-by-step with our handy Help Guide that is included with the presentation template.

Bebas Neue also goes really well with Calibri which is a font that already comes with PowerPoint. That means you do not need to waste extra time searching for the right font combo, you do not to spend money on paying for the right font, and you get to focus on creating the baddest PowerPoint presentation possible.

If for some reason your heart is set on a different font (just please not Times New Roman), you can always change up the fonts accordingly. Just use your best judgment—in case you are stuck for good font recommendations, you can always shoot us a quick email or refer to the many blog posts we have written for guidance on making the right choice.

A Clickable “Choose Your Own Adventure” Options Menu

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Remember those “Choose Your Own Adventure” books from the 1980s? Those were pretty sweet! You got to go on a mountain climbing expedition or step through a time warp portal and explore a future dystopia controlled by weird dolphin alien hybrid creatures! We took a fresh approach to template design by allowing the template to have a “Choose Your Own Adventure” table of contents. While you can’t end up on the slopes of Mt. Everest or in the slippery clutches of not-so-benevolent dolphin aliens with our table of contents, picking and choosing the perfect PowerPoint slide is now as easy as ever. With this format you can easily jump to any of the 12 sections in the template by clicking on any of the tiles on the slide. Clever right?

How this works in practice is pretty neat. Let’s say that you, the co-founder of a startup selling cool new coffee roasting machines, have to give a pitch presentation to a big tech incubator in San Francisco. In this case, you may find it important to skip to the yourgreat company bio section, since you are so new and people will want to know who you are and what your company was founded to do (in this case sell quality coffee roasting products). You will also want to talk about your strategy for growth, your target demographics, and discuss who you see as the competition. In that case you will probably want to take your audience through our pre-designed slides for “Introduction,” “Our Team” (maybe just you and your co-founder), “Customer Analysis,” “Business Analysis,” and of course a good “Closing” slide to deliver a strong finish. The nice thing about the clickable table of contents is that you can skip to any section in the presentation with a single click of the mouse. No more fumbling through the entire deck to find the particular section you are looking for.

Parallax Scrolling

Parralax scrolling is an innovative trend in web design that has been around for a number of years now but has recently become quite vogue. In case that term sounds familiar but you aren’t quite sure what parallax is: it’s a technique where background images move down the screen more slowly than foreground images, which creates a sensation of depth and adds to your user’s immersion and heightens their viewing experience. We implemented this style into several slides throughout the presentation, because it would be kind of selling you short to create an aesthetically pleasing slide template set but not give you beautiful and elegant animation effects to complement it and make it really come alive. This technique adds a new dynamic layer to the slides, and it is the sort of subtle detail that will give your presentation an extra bit of oomph.

Here are a few examples of our parallax scrolling in action, in case you are curious:

Influencer_Presentation_Template_Parallax_Scrolling_Example_Animated GIF Final
Over here, you can see how this slide fills in the agenda for a meeting with horizontally moving topic headers, filling in one below the other. Once the first slide is full, there is a vertical sliding transition to move down the image (don’t you just love these minimalist urban cityscape photos?), followed by the same horizontal topic headers. Parallax is the epitome of smoothness and having these slides at your disposal will only make you and your team look smoother.

Parralax Scrolling - Why work with us - Animated GIF
For this “Why Work With Us?” slide you can see a few different animations happening. First of all, each one of the talking points fills in vertically up the screen. Then once the talking points have all filled into place, the screen slides vertically in the reverse direction that the talking points were appearing in. It’s smooth and just looks too darn cool!

Clever Animations and Transitions

Almost every slide has clever animations and transitions that made the slide pop even further.

You have to see them live to truly appreciate them. The benefit of animations is that they help introduce the elements of the slide one at time, creating visual separation and letting you carry on your talking points at a rate that is more comfortable for your audience. It also makes it easier for your audience to follow along, since they are not being bombarded with the entire presentation slide all at once.

Not to mention, these animations also look really cool (at least we think so). It’s not like there are any weird Windows 98 PowerPoint animations in here; everything is slick and tasteful (in other words, no shimmering text or images that bounce around your screen before settling into the right place). Of course, you might think that they can get a bit distracting, so if you don’t want the animations you can easily turn them off.

Here’s some more examples of the templates cool animations, just because we feel like it:

Our Services Animation - Animated GIFOur Goals Animation - Animated GIF
Our Process Animation - Animated GIF
Look at how awesome these are! You are practically guaranteed to have someone come up to you after you finish your presentation – which you will probably rock – and ask you how you thought of all these nifty animations and graphics. Then you can just wink at them and say you have a really great design team.

Easy to Understand Help Guide

Professional PowerPoint Template - Influencer - Help Guide

In case you are stuck with customizing things the way you want, we have put together an easy to follow help guide that shows you step-by-step how to customize the template to fit your needs. Everything from messing around with vector graphics to replacing all the images can be found in the Help Guide. If for some reason the help guide does not answer your question, don’t forget that your questions might already be answered here or on other blog posts on this website. The only thing that does not come with the help guide is actual, real life customer support. Oh wait! We’ve got that too . . .

Fast Customer Support

While this template is EXTREMELY easy to edit and should prove to be the best presentation tool you have at your disposal, our team of highly trained and PowerPoint-savvy customer service pandas provides fast and agile support to answer questions you may have. We make our absolute best effort to reply to all queries within 24 hours during the week, although if you have a question for us on the weekend it will have to wait until Monday, because pandas get kind of grumpy when they have to head into the office on Sundays. No one wants to deal with grumpy pandas; we’re sure you understand.

Conclusion

So, you’ve heard our spiel about how this new PowerPoint template is going to do amazing things for your presentation.

It’s got oodles of great features and content! You have over 200 custom-made slides that cover everything from your company bio to your portfolio for sharing case studies to easily editable infographics and vectors that look awesome and are so much cooler than old fashioned pie charts and bar graphs (but those come with the package too if you need them). The slides come adapted to two main size formats so that you have perfectly proportioned slides and handouts for your audience.

There are three total color combinations to customize your theme with, so that it looks and feels right. Hundreds of high quality images come included in the template and ready to use as they are or edit as you please. There are many awesome looking and completely editable vector graphics for you to use, plus over 500 icons that suit literally every possible topic imaginable. You will not have to go searching on the internet for other icons to use in your presentation!

You also get the lovely font combination of Bebas Neue and Calibri to grace the text of your slides, a really easy pick and choose menu of slide templates in twelve different categories, beautiful parallax scrolling to wow your audience along with stunning transitions and animations for an elegant and enhanced viewing experience, not to mention first-class customer support from a team of design professionals who handle any queries with efficiency and urgency.

By now you are hopefully asking where you can get this excellent set of awesome slides. You can download the Influencer template on Graphic River today by clicking here. It will save you tons of time and make your next presentation stand out from the rest of the mediocre presentations out there today. You can use the template as much as you like, forever, so think of it as a good investment in your future business endeavors.

Alright then, it sounds like a good investment! But how much is it going to cost to get? Aren’t these things supposed to be expensive? Not in this case. Which is pretty amazing when you think about it – when we have clients who hire us to create custom-made one-use presentations the cost runs into the thousands of dollars. Whereas downloading the Influencer template – the last presentation template you will ever need, ever — only costs you $20. How much would you be willing to pay to crush your next presentation? Wouldn’t you hand over $20 for that extra bit of confidence to know you had a kickass designed PowerPoint presentation?

We’ll stop the sales schtick now; you know what to do! See you at the finish line and best of luck with your next presentation!

Click here to download the Influencer PowerPoint Template right now!

Quality PowerPoint Template - Professional Presentation Template - Influencer Template

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23
aug

10 Clever Tricks for Adding Text to Images

Presentation Design Tips -10 Better Ways to Add Text to Images

When you are creating a PowerPoint presentation and want it to look as snazzy as possible, there is a lot you can do to make your slides shine with the brightness and glory of a thousand suns. You can add beautiful background textures, have perfectly complimentary fonts, or avoid the hassle of doing it yourself and just buy a ready-made template from the get-go. Even so, if you are not careful your text can look boring. Another way to make your presentation slides look spiffy (and certainly not boring) is to change up the way you add text to a picture. Here are ten clever and easy to implement presentation design tips for mixing up your text display and maximizing your PowerPoint potential.

1. Add Some Perspective

PowerPoint Design Tips - Add Perspective

Sometimes it can be a good idea to play around with the perspective in your slide—keeping your text front and center in the foreground all the time can get a bit stale. A great way to change up the monotony is to set the text so that it appears to be receding backwards into the image, Star Wars opening-credits style. Especially in this image you can see how, with such a strong line receding into the distance—everything from both rows of pine trees to the road moving straight into the background—it is basically a no-brainer to tilt the text backwards to compliment the overall thrust of the photo itself. Don’t forget that you can go in the other direction and change up the perspective so that the text appears to be coming out at your views like in a 3D movie.

2. Make the Text Part of the Scene

Presentation Design Tips - Explore

I swear I’m not a forest hermit or something—I really like this first image because it is a perfect example of integrating your display text into the scene of the image you’re using.

In this image example you see a slightly different version to this same approach. This time, the display text is manipulated to conform to the contours of the mountain that is the focal point of the image, creating a clear tie-in between the image itself and the idea being expressed. It’s a great concept and in theory should not be too hard to mess up, unless you overthink it. This cool PowerPoint text effect is a brilliant way to get your audience’s attention and help them better understand the talking point you might have in a slide, because rather than separating the idea from the picture, you make those two components into the same thing.

3. Add Icons for Emphasis

Presentation Design Tips - Add Icons

Sometimes the best way to get your point across is to add simple, preferably flat-designed icons to your presentation slides. It goes without saying that if you do use an icon or vector, make sure that it compliments your image. In this case I took a photo of a mysteriously misty lake and forest (OK, maybe I am actually a forest hermit) and added a cool looking wolf icon that for obvious reasons compliments not only the display text, but also the image. When you add an icon to your presentation slide you have the opportunity to reinforce the message you are trying to send to your audience (like building a blazing campfire in the woods) without having to rely solely on words.

4. Go Big

Presentation Design Tips - Go Bold

Size matters (at least when it comes to the size of your display text). Sometimes you do not have to do anything else to an image to make it stand out other than smack some size 225 font text on that puppy and let it do all the talking. A few caveats to this tip, however: if you do decide to go for some XXL-sized display text, pick a font that will look good doing it. Notice that I used Bebas Neue, a no-nonsense font that is easy to read while big or small. If you go big, there is really no reason to use a fancypants font. Another tip to keep in mind is that you should make sure that the image you match it up with is not too cluttered, visually, if you use a mega-sized display text. Keep the compositional clutter to a minimum so that your huge words have less commotion going on in the background—that way you can really maximize the effect.

5. Combine 2-3 Different Font Sizes

Presentation Design Tips - Combine Mulitple Font Sizes

Playing off the concept of using ultra-sized fonts, another great way to create eye-catching visuals with your display text is to mix up the size of your text. As you can see, this technique looks great and is quite effective at drawing your attention to the bigger, more significant keywords in the text. To optimize the visual impact of this sort of display, it probably is best to have a longer phrase with anywhere from 5 to 12 words in them, that way you can vary the font size in sizeable chunks of words. Did you notice that I applied the same text effect in tip #2 to make the words part of the scene? It looks as though the woman in the picture is reading the words on the slide.

6. Be Bold with Keywords

PowerPoint Design Tips - Emphasize Keywords

As you know by now, it is very important to be concise with the text you use on presentation slides, because no one wants to hear you reading an essay during a PowerPoint presentation. So when you create display text for a slide, it should already be pared down to the essentials. A useful method for conveying the most prominent information to your readers is to highlight keywords in your image. There are a few ways to pull this off. The first one, as mentioned before, is to draw attention to the most significant words in the text by making them significantly larger than the other words in the text.

As you can see in the image example, the keyword “definitely” dwarfs the rest of the text. It also helps that is placed front and center in the middle of the image—you just can’t miss it. This is a good example of not relying just on increasing font size, but also playing around with more eye-popping fonts or using bold typeface or italics to draw your audience’s attention. And always try to select font colors that, like in both these cases, especially pop out in contrast to the image color scheme.

7. Play with Orientation

Presentation Design Tips - Play with Orientation

The orientation, or angle at which you present your text, is another variable at your control when you are designing effective display text for your presentation slides. You can achieve all sorts of different effects by playing with the orientation of the words.
As you can see in the image I made the display text appear more whimsical. Here the orientation fits into a cohesive scheme, as it compliments the loopy, cursive font choice (a great example of being bold with keywords) and the quirky, swooshing curlicue that finishes extravagantly beneath the text. It is a great example of how you can shift the orientation of the text, but also other elements in the image to create a balanced composition and a beautiful slide.

8. Add Shapes for Emphasis

Presentation Design Tips - Add Shapes for Emphasis

Especially if you are using a bright, catchy image background it can sometimes be difficult to make your display text stand out. While making the font really big is one solution, this detracts from the image itself, and you probably do not want to resort to using overly flashy colors of font styles (again, with exceptions) to highlight your text. Instead, a perfect solution to creating instant contrast and drawing attention to your words is to add semi-transparent shapes as background filler behind your display text.
In the example image, not only are the words in the display text superimposed over a circle, but then a series of dotted concentric circles accompanies it, with the circles fading into ever gentler shades as they radiate outwards from the words. Using a dark, simple shape to slip in between a white-dominated image and the light font color is an elegant solution to creating contrast and maximizing visual balance between the image and the display text.

9. Stack your Text Into an Invisible Shape

PowerPoint  Design Tips - Stack Text

A particularly clever arrangement involves grouping the display text into an invisible shape in contrast to whatever is in the image background. The effect works best with a good number of words, and acts as a compositional foil to the tangible image that is presented with it. In the case of this example, the display text is shaped into a vertical rectangle in front of a jagged mountain peak, with swirling clouds filling in the foreground. Ideally you would shape your words in a way that compliments the message. Here, “life begins outside your comfort zone” is compressed into an invisible box, with the wild scenery in the background implying that life is metaphorically just beyond the comfort zone written in words. Get creative with your words and try this the next time you want to add an extra, implicit layer of meaning to your presentation slides.

10. Combine Light and Bold Fonts Together for Impact

Presentation Design Tips - Combine Bold and Light Fonts

The last tip I have to share with you is combining light and bold fonts together to highlight your most important ideas. Uniform fonts are a little bit dull, so adding boldface to your font or choosing one font that is narrow and another one that tends to be on the thick side is a great way to create visual impact. For this to work best, you do need to make sure that the color saturation and contrast of the image you use does not interfere visually in places where your display text overlaps, because thin fonts will stand out in different ways from bold fonts.

Conclusion

Coming up with better ways to display text in your slide presentations doesn’t have to be rocket science, but as you can see it is a very effective and ultimately enjoyable task. With the right application you can design beautiful, varied text that brings your slideshow to another level.

If you follow any of these ten cool text effects your presentations will no doubt look spectacular! Don’t forget that if you are still not sure what sort of text looks good, you can consult some of our other articles here on Presentation Panda to make sure that you have the best presentation possible.

So, here’s my question for you: Are there any other methods you use for adding text to a picture? Any other tricks that I missed? Let me know what you think below and please try to be as specific as possible. Sound off in the comments below!

Lastly, do you have a friend that could benefit from learning about these presentation design tips? If so, email them the link to this post.

Thanks for sharing and be sure to post this article on Twitter of Facebook as well (by using the sharing buttons to the left).

Hungry for more information on how to add text to images? Here are some suggested articles:

5 Methods For “Overlaying Text On Images” That Will Surely Impress A Crowd

5 Presentation Font Trends For 2015

10 Tips For Selecting Images For Your Presentations

This post was also featured on SlideShare. Make sure to follow us over there!

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26
jul

Designing Presentation Templates the Right Way (5 Simple Tips)

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template

Hey there, fellow presentation pandas. Similar to feats of bravery including rescuing someone from a burning building, telling off someone who cut in front of you in line, or covering yourself in chum and diving into shark-infested seas, it takes guts and iron resolve to design a really awesome presentation template. There are so many things that can go wrong when it comes to creating the perfect presentation slide, and so you must tread cautiously when attempting to come up with your PowerPoint presentation, because having a well-designed template is critical to your success. But rather than quaking in your Italian-designed business shoes and giving up all hope of ever having a clean and professional looking presentation, take heed. There are some fundamental truths to making really awesome presentation templates, and I am going to guide you through them in five easy steps.

Presentation Template Tip #1: Buy a Template from a Professional Designer

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Tip#1

Especially if you are on a tight budget or are simply a bit of a control freak, it can be tempting to go it alone and confront PowerPoint or Photoshop head on and design a template from scratch, not unlike how Captain Ahab made the reckless decision to face Moby Dick. The problem here is that if you are a busy, busy bee (no doubt you are) and you have other projects to juggle, chances are high that whatever sort of slide template you come up with be lacking somewhere. Maybe the fonts that you choose will fail to match up correctly. It might be that your colors look like they were chosen by a colorblind 2 year old chimp. Perhaps you nail those two elements but you wreck your slide template with unnecessarily distracting elements which take away from the main focal point of your slide. Or maybe your formatting just does not add up.

Whatever it is, your audience will take notice. Why not save yourself the worry and leave the fundamentals to a trained professional? Plenty of graphic designers specialize in creating beautiful, seamless PowerPoint slides, and it does not cost that much to hire someone on to do the heavy design lifting for you. A great—and even better yet, free!—resource to browse for stunningly awesome presentation templates is Graphic River, which offers great deals on slide presentation templates in addition to serving as a handy general resource to consult if you do decide to go it alone and create your own presentation from scratch. As Picasso said, the greatest artists are the ones who steal the most—you do not need to completely plagiarize someone else’s design, but if you see certain elements that you really like, such as a gorgeous texture or lovely gradients that add depth to an image, you can always do your best to riff off of what you see.

But seriously, for an extra $15 or $20 it is a pretty good investment on your part to consider some of the gorgeous premade templates out there. There is a design to fit just about every taste, topic, and tone—from retro to corporate and everything in between. Here are a bunch of great templates to get you started.

Presentation Template Tip #2: Choose a Color Theme

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Tip #3

Color is one of the big make or break aspects of a presentation slide that you need to be careful about. Ideally, the colors that you choose will match up harmoniously—generally speaking, you can use your gut to ascertain if the combination of primary, secondary and tertiary colors you are using goes together, but there are definitely other resources to depend on in case you are not sure which colors go where.

To give you an idea of what color harmony looks like, let’s revisit the title slide of this presentation. First of all, I picked a primary color that was strong without being too over the top or garish. A nice cool green, like the ocean when the sun is out and shining strong, sets a relaxing, fun tone. Orange—technically, somewhere between orange and burnt sienna—plays off the coolness of the green and gives a bit of visual warmth to the composition, as well as draws your eye. Finally, a charcoal gray color rounds out the trio and provides small details to offset what would otherwise be a two dimensional and boring setup. White is the primary color for the font itself, and you will notice that I also incorporated white into the pencil image. Using the same color between two different elements reinforces the visual integrity of the slide and provides a subtle motif meant to unify the design as a whole.

Furthermore, you will notice two areas of the slide where different shades of the same colors are used: Going from left to right, there is a diagonal partition where the green background goes from dark to light. Also, the bottom half of the pencil appears a shade darker from the top half. Both of these color gradations are used to give the flat design just a slight popping effect—without it, the slide would appear a bit more two dimensional than I would want it to be.

In case you want to know even more about complimentary color patterns and how to create visual motifs in your slide presentation with color, another great resource at your disposal is Design Seeds, which allows you to test out different color palettes. Design Seeds features color schemes adjacent to in situ images showing what sort of colors to use in relation to different images, sort of the same way that Type Genius will give you an idea of what fonts work best together.

Presentation Template Tip#3: Hide Distracting Elements

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Tip #2

One of the most important aspects of creating a beautiful presentation template is keeping things as simple as possible. That is why it is so important to hide distracting elements that basically serve no good except to clutter up the visual field of your slide. In slide design, less is always more, and you should follow this tenet ruthlessly. Slides need to breathe! They do not need to be cluttered up with any of the following:

  • Company logos (apart from the first page, maybe)
  • Client logos (also good to include once but no more)
  • Legal disclaimers (as a rule of thumb, you want to avoid using more than a few words on a slide, so legalese is certainly out of the question)
  • Website address (include this on the cover slide or on your “contact us” slide)
  • Header graphics (no. just no. All this does is cramps the slide and takes up precious white space)
  • Long survey questions (presentation slides should avoid anything that will put people to sleep, and this is right at the top of that list)

So the next time that you are looking into designing a good presentation template, do not make the mistake of going overboard and trying to put in clever looking yet unnecessary images such as logos or photos or anything beyond the bare essentials. If you absolutely must include lots of visual clutter, consider creating more slides and dispersing the images across them in a less concentrated manner. There is nothing wrong with having more slides with less elements on them; there is definitely going to be a problem if you have less slides with more elements on them.

On the other side of things, if you need to have some cool visual elements on your slide and are at a loss for where to find them or how to arrange them, this useful piece will shed some light on keeping everything looking in perfect order.

Presentation Template Tip#4: Use Nice Looking Fonts

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Tip #4

You are not in college anymore; you do not have to write out everything in Times New Roman or Arial font. Or Calibri. Or *gasp* Comic Sans. This pertains especially to creating an elegant and pleasant to look at presentation slide. Please, please do yourself the credit of using a font that does not scream “English Literature 101 Final Essay.” It really is not hard to find beautiful, minimalist fonts, and you usually do not have to pay anything to download them. One of the best resources for finding fonts is Font Squirrel, which allows you to browse a huge collection of custom designed fonts by some of the best graphic designers out there. Best of all, it costs nothing to download the fonts there and then implement them into your presentation slide, so you do not have to spend money to ensure that your slide looks its absolute best.

The reason why you want to use nice looking fonts in your presentation slide is because no matter how good your ideas are, if they are presented on a plain white background and in Helvetica, you will lose your audience to the crushing weight of boredom.

Spice things up a bit!

But before you get too creative, also consider that it is not a good idea to use more than two fonts. Anything more than that and there will be major visual inconsistencies in your design. Choose two fonts that complement each other visually; for example, use something bold and catchy for a header, and if you have a few small bullet points beneath, use a font that is elegant, slim and easy to read. You should also make sure that your fonts are not in conflict with each other—this happens when you either choose nearly identical fonts or two fonts which are way, way too different from each other. There are a bunch of other important things to keep in mind regarding font selection and if you have any other questions you should really look at this article on how to properly combine fonts.

Presentation Template Tip#5: Keep Everything Consistent

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Tip #5

It is great to have varying degrees of contrast in your work, but there is such a thing as having too much variety in your presentation slide. When this happens, it looks kind of like a fire juggler attempting to unicycle against traffic while balancing a goldfish bowl in his lap and playing the harmonica. In other words, it does not look good. Inconsistencies can happen in a single slide, or sometimes they play out across the entire presentation, from one slide to another.

There are a ton of common errors people overlook when they build a presentation slide, so try seeing if you can spot the mistakes that I deliberately made here.

The first mistake is in the first slide. There is no reason to change the color of the font halfway through from white to gray. Especially on the green background, the gray font makes it harder, not easier to read.

The second mistake occurs in the second slide. All of a sudden the horizontal bands that run across the slide have changed in color from black to white.

The third slide contains a bunch of different mistakes that you should always avoid. First of all, the background is inexplicably gray when it should match the green background in the first two slides. Second of all, the font stays the same shade of white, which makes it almost impossible to read the words on the slide. Third, the word “elements” is not capitalized, unlike in every other instance when all the words are written in capital letters. Fourth, the horizontal band running across the top is the right color, but it is missing its twin down at the bottom. Finally, the font in the third slide is different than the first two slides.

Now you should have a pretty good idea of what an inconsistent slide looks like, so try not to make the same mistakes when you design your next presentation.

Conclusion

Presentation Design Tips - How to design an awesome presentation template - Summary

Now you know what goes into making a perfect presentation template, I hope you tackle your next big presentation with aplomb. Consider going to Graphic River and picking up a readymade template, or now that you know the ropes, try making your own.

But before you go, I’d like to know your thoughts. When you make a presentation slide, do you have any go-to resources that you use for selecting the right font, color scheme, or template? Let us know; we can always learn a bit more!

Lastly, do you have a friend that could benefit from learning about these presentation design tips? If so, email them the link to this post.

Thanks for sharing and be sure to post this article on Twitter of Facebook as well (by using the sharing buttons to the left).

Hungry for more information on presentation design trends? Here are some suggested articles:

5 Presentation Tools That Will Make Your Slides Stand Out

7 Presentation Design Trends You Need To Know About

10 Professional Presentation Templates That Don’t Suck

This post was also featured on SlideShare Click here to follow us on SlideShare.

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11
jul

Déjà vu? 10 Different Ways to Design the Same Type of Slide

Presentation Design Tips - 10 ways to design the same kind of slide

Nothing makes a presentation panda happier than variety—variety in choices of bamboo, napping spots, and of course, presentation slides. Sometimes the best way to learn how to design good looking slides is to see many examples of the same type of slide, which is what we’re going to be doing today. Here are 10 examples of slides from Graphic River that represent different ways of designing more or less the same type of slide.

In this post we are going to look at 10 different ways to design a “services slide” which is very common in investor pitch type presentations and other sorts of slides where you’re trying to convince someone to give you lots of money or just impress them in general. Keep in mind that all of the images in this presentation are sample templates found within Graphic River. If there are any slides that capture your imagination you can click on the image to be taken to the full template where you can download it through Graphic River. FYI, if you find a template that you fall in love with, they run about $12-$35—definitely an investment worth making!

Example #1: Orange is the Neue Black

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #5

There is something bright, bold and jazzy about using orange as a  primary color in anything, whether it is your Lamborghini sports car, your frosted corn flakes cereal mascot, or your presentation slide. Orange says bright colors and bright ideas, and when you combine it with some super clean Bebas Neue font (one of my personal favorites), you have a combination that pretty much cannott go wrong.
With the simple, flat design scheme and elegantly crafted yet minimalistic images and vectors, you can tailor your slide to convey all sorts of great info in a sleek, sexy manner that will be sure to impress your clients and nail sales. Over a super bold orange background we have six tiles, arranged 3 x 2, with an eye-catching title in black and white. A slim black horizontal line subtly breaks up the frame from title:subtitle to the rest of the body, ensuring an easy-on the eyes transition from top to bottom. One simple image in each box catches your attention, and the inclusion of a black box in the upper middle part of the body really stands out and provides dramatic contrast for your spresentation slide. You can download this slide here.

Example #2: Blu

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #10

Blu, like the Italian language which it comes from, conveys a sense of sophistication, grace and elegance that are synonymous with great graphic design and slide presentation. Blu is all about keeping things simple and straightforward, with just a touch of class to make things look good.

Here, simple flat icons are laid horizontally across a midnight hued background. Blue is the motif that pulls things together; everything is consistently blue, from the vector elements to the text in the title and subtitle, as well as the logo in the bottom left corner and the slide scrolling arrows in the bottom right arrow.  Each section is clearly marked off with different boxes, which are done in a light whitish-blue color that compliments the deeper blue used elsewhere on the slide. In the title section, the use of pure white is especially eye-popping compared to the dark background; it’s a good example of using “pure” colors sparingly to stand out against weaker or contrasting primary and secondary colors. The consistent blue color throught the slide makes the slide look sleek and polished, as opposed to the possible visual confusion that would arise if you tried putting in too many colors (but do not get the wrong idea—you can definitely use more than one color in a slide and make it look great, as you will see in the next slide). You can download this slide here.

Example #3 Polychrome

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #1

Sometimes you have to be a little bit fresh, a little bit creative, if you want to really grab someone’s attention. The Polychrome slide does a little bit more than binary colored slides, and with lots of color going on here, there is plenty of energy to go around. Simple, flat icons are easy on the eye with just enough sharpness to draw attention from one section to another. The icons are casually overlaid on top of a blurred background image, which creates a focal point for the text and icons.

Here, the focal point of the slide is the sequence of multicolored images, each with their own color and stylized design. Notice also how the boxes around each body match the color used in the designs—a small yet important complimentary detail. A little bubble in the bottom right corner counts of which slide number this is, and while the title section is not too crazy, it still calls attention by means of an enlarged font and a subtle horizontal color bar just beneath it. The only thing I would be careful with on this slide is not to include too much text—the current slide is a bit wordy, which makes reading the information a bit of a squinting exercise. As a friendly reminder, try not to put so many words on your slide presentations in the first place! You can download this slide here.

Example 4: Diamonds are Forever

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #7

As a famous James Bond villain once said, diamonds are forever. They look great around women’s necks, not so great on rappers’ teeth, but really, really great on slides like this one. This unique looking diamond display makes for a smart, simple looking presentation slide that is sure to get you attention.
The focus on large icons—in this case flat design fonts, which you should check out in this really helpful post—immediately draws the attention of your viewers, and the small text makes the icons stand out more and really pop out from the slide. It all comes together with a simple dark background that brings out the light blue colors utilized in the icons. Together with a text that ranges somewhere between gray and mauve, you have a slide that is maximized for visual impact. Naturally, this a great slide to promote big, grandiose ideas, and then to break them down on following presentation slides into bite-sized pieces for your audience. I would definitely recommend this template if you’re looking for a kickass opening slide, or perhaps a conclusion slide to wrap up your ideas into one nice piece. Like diamonds, this presentation slide’s value is priceless. You can download this slide here.

Example #5 Diagram Tree

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #4

Pop quiz: when you first looked at this slide, where did your eyes go first? One of the great aspects of this presentation slide is that its format is ideal for bringing your audience visually through a slide, from one idea to the next. The different topics branch off, sort of like a tree, and each branch sprouts some kind of brilliant idea related to whatever it is you’re talking about.

Once again, flat design keeps things simple and elegant—no need to go crazy with 3D design when you can render icons perfectly in two dimensions. The categories of your presentation are shown in a unique format that allows more negative space to fill the picture and make it easier for your audience to follow along. This slide presentation template was made for a good laser pointer, and also definitely not the sort of slide where you would ever want to use more than a word or two beneath each image. The whole point of a minimalistic, negative space design such as this one is to keep things as clean as possible, so if you’re going to use this template (I can’t recommend it enough!) make sure that you’re not overloading this sort of slide with anything more than a tiny bit of info on screen; the vast majority of it should be conveyed off-screen. You can download this slide here.

Example #6 Ze Venn Diagram

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #8

I’m not too sure who Venn was, but it’s always fun to pretend that whoever invented the namesake diagram with those fun circles came from some strange foreign country where people say “ze” instead of “the” and they create diagrams with circles instead of the usual grids. What first catches my attention when I view this slide is the red circle, which stands out immensely from the other two circles, which are varying shades of gray. This is a prime example of how color (red) and position (center) can create contrast and make certain elements on a slide stand out. Doing so directs the audience’s attention, and when you combine great composition and color with (hopefully) good content, you’ve got a winning formula.

Anyways, what we have here is a perfect example of using a really creative type of infographic within a presentation slide setting. Venn diagram style can come in handy particularly if you want to show that your services are related or to demonstrate which features or benefits are included with different types of signup packages that you offer. The simplistic minimalistic icons here make it an absolute beauty of a slide to play with—it is pretty remarkable what you can do when you have a stripped-down design to play with, rather than a bunch of extra unwieldy images and boxes that distract your audience but do not really add any additional useful information. You can download this slide here.

Example #7 Quadripartite

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #2

Here is perhaps one of the simplest yet most straightforward presentation slides yet. This design scheme revolves around square thumbnails, features a sleek black background with a very light texturing (check out this post for lots of awesome background ideas), and all the image placeholders are nicely aligned with the text on the slide. The result is a presentation slide that might not win many points in terms of “wow” factor, but it will certainly be one of the simplest to read. And frankly, as one of my fashionista friends once told me, if you are trying to impress someone you can never go wrong with black (or in this case charcoal gray), but you can definitely mess up if you try wearing something a bit more colorful.

That’s basically what is happening here: the quadripartite design gets straight to the point, while the yellow accenting keeps things from getting too dull (although it wouldn’t hurt to just go black and white and really keep the look here as minimalist as possible). You can download this slide here.

Example #8 The Bold Minimalist

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #9

If you have a weak spot for minimalist themes when it comes to apps or websites, this is probably the presentation slide for you. It doesn’t get much better than this: you have a beautiful, slightly blurred background (bonus points for picking a landscape with fog, which adds to the blurriness), in addition to bold, popping color icons in the foreground and simply designed information bars at the top and also along the bottom.

The key here is composing a slide that is harmonious based on several important factors. You need to pick a background that is beautiful but ideally contains either muted colors or desaturated so as not to distract from the bright icons in the immediate foreground. Your icons should preferably be flat, but most importantly should conform to the minimalist style that is present throughout the slide. You should also take good care here to use a much, much bigger font than what is currently on display—and that means cutting down on word usage, because it’s simply unacceptable to have a slide with so many words, especially when they are as illegible as these are! You can download this slide here.

Example #9 Les Visages

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #3

Ah, stock images—to be used sparingly for sure, they are usually the bane of my existence. There are two exceptions, however: When Vince Vaughn is in them. Also, this presentation slide does a good job using a stock image without making it front and center and turning the whole slide into a joke (which is what normally happens when you use stock images).

The slide here uses an engergetic stock photo background that doesn’t look overly cheesy (for once!). But thankfully, the focus of this slide is not on the stock photo, but on the big, bold text in the foreground, accompanied by simple flat design icons (you should by now realize that flat is the way to go), and four bold colors that lie adjacent to each other along the color spectrum. It’s pretty darn in sync, and if you have an especially corporate audience or business setting to present to, this slide might not be a bad choice. You can download this slide here.

Example #10 New York ‘89

Presentation Design Tips - Presentation Template #6

Oh man, this slide makes me excited. I can’t quite put my finger on it, because there are several features that are so cool. First of all, the really unique layout here is awesome. It’s anything but traditional—the opposite of the linear design you see so often. Everything is spaced out somewhat randomly, and the gorgeous graphics make it a pleasure to let your eyes dance around the slide. Colorful flat images here combine nicely with a great font called Lobster (you can get it here for free).

So what is happening here, other than there’s a bunch of random hipster design icons that scream (at least to me) New York City just before the 1990s happened (ignoring the tablet and laptop, forgive me)? That’s the beauty of this slide: so much is happening that you can really tell a story here. I think this would be a great choice for a startup in a creative field pitching to an incubator or VC board—a great showcase of creativity that is almost explosive, and the sort of slide that, with a good dusting of charisma (that means you), should help you absolutely nail your presentation. You can download this slide here.

Conclusion

So, I hope you have some bright ideas for your next big presentation—there are so many different presentation slides out there, and one of them is bound to fit the sort of aesthetic you’re looking for. The purpose of this article was to showcase how there many different ways to design the same kind of slide, and I hope after reading this you will keep at least one of these templates in mind.

Speaking of which, out of these templates, do you have a favorite? What exactly caught your eye? Share in the comments below!

Lastly, do you have a friend that could benefit from learning about these presentation design tips? If so, email them the link to this post.

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Hungry for more information on presentation design trends? Here are some suggested articles:

5 Presentation Tools That Will Make Your Slides Stand Out

7 Presentation Design Trends You Need To Know About

10 Professional Presentation Templates That Don’t Suck

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