Businesses around the globe have embraced PowerPoint for more than 25 years. There are numerous reasons for this, including the program’s time-saving templates, eye-catching visual format and enhanced ability to quickly and easily get a point across. Whether you personally love it or hate it, PowerPoint is likely to retain a position of popularity and power for the foreseeable future. Therefore, I’m here to help you learn how to take your ASX presentations to the next level.
The most important thing you need to realize is that it’s not nearly enough to know how to create a PowerPoint presentation. In fact, because this program has become so commonplace, you need to step up your graphic design game if you want to have a memorable impact on your shareholders. Fortunately, PowerPoint design is something that I’m passionate about, and I’m going to give you seven tips that will help ensure you get the desired results from your next presentation.
1. Careful Use of Size
Size truly does matter when it comes to creating a better PowerPoint experience. This doesn’t mean that you should make everything ostentatiously large, but it is critical to pay close attention to the visual elements that you want people to focus on. For example, you can capture your audience by using boldly large titles and images that speak directly to their interests.
Ultimately, your size choices are one of the biggest things that you need to consider whenever you’re creating PowerPoint presentations. You need to determine which elements are the most vital for getting your point across. At the same time, it’s necessary to carefully distribute everything on each slide so that the other information isn’t overwhelmed by primary imagery or text that is too large.
2. Embrace Colour and Contrast
Some people believe that everything needs to be the same colour, font and size. Not only is this an erroneous belief but it will actually make it much more difficult to get your point across. That’s why I advocate for using a PowerPoint design process that includes colour and contrast.
Assuming you’re going to have some type of heading that’s followed by smaller text, I recommend choosing two contrasting colours and fonts to provide a visually appealing amount of contrast. Consider for a moment how much blue will stand out on a white background, especially when it’s contrasted again with smaller black text. Additionally, you can use colour temperatures to your advantage. For instance, blue is cool and black is neutral, so they both stand out when placed together because of this contrast.
Other factors to consider include the value and saturation of each colour. Keep in mind that the main point you’re trying to get across should ultimately be what visually stands out the most.
3. Utilize Varying Typographic Levels
Let’s face it; if everything on your slides is large, none of it will stand out. The good news is that you can use varying typographic levels to fix this problem. Even if you choose to have everything in one font and colour, you can still make the main point stand out by increasing the font size.
Magazines provide a good example of varying typographic levels. The beginning of each article is usually characterized by a large title, a medium-sized subheading and small text for the actual body. Within this formula, you may also see sparsely spaced out medium-sized text again that emphasizes a specific point or quote. I have had great success emulating this format in the past, and it can definitely help you develop dynamic PowerPoint slides.
4.Don’t be Afraid to Use Typeface Contrast
Have you become convinced that you cannot mix fonts within the same presentation, let alone inside the same sentence? I was once beholden to this same myth, but breaking through to the other side has drastically boosted my ability to get the most out of graphic design in PowerPoint.
Before we move forward with this line of thought, I do need to make it absolutely clear that you shouldn’t throw just any fonts together. Contrast naturally occurs when two fonts are chosen, but it’s wise to select between options that either flow well together or have an extremely obvious and purposeful contrast.
Everything else you choose, including whether or not each word is bold or colourful and how large it is, plays a major role in whether or not your typeface contrast will be successful. In most cases, it’s best to use a clear hierarchy to prevent your font choices from clashing with each other. You can also have some fun by making one word in your header stand out with a different font.
5. Use Your Space Layout and White Space Wisely
Many people make the mistake of neglecting white space. If you want to be successful with graphic design in PowerPoint, this is one area where you absolutely must break free of outdated thought processes and fears. I remember when the Internet was new and people felt compelled to fill up as much space as possible with images and words. Thankfully, the minimalist movement hit the Internet, and it’s something that you can learn a lot from.
I’m not suggesting that you should put barely any content on your slides, but I do implore you to give your readers a break with carefully placed white space. This space enables readers to transition more easily from one point to the next, and it helps avoid overloading them. Keep in mind that you can also use white space to effectively separate sections and ideas. When used correctly, this is a very powerful way to increase the impact of your PowerPoint designs.
6. Consider Utilizing a Grid Layout
Grid layouts offer structure to each slide, which is a good way to ensure that your presentation isn’t sloppy or unattractive. In fact, there are at least eight proven ways a grid layout can enhance your PowerPoint presentation.
Whether you’re a graphic designer or someone who has been given the task of developing presentations without a lot of experience, you can use a grid layout to your advantage. To put it as bluntly as possible, these layouts flat out make your job easier. You don’t have to struggle with constant design decisions because a grid does this for you. As a result, your slides will be more balanced and organized. Grid layouts also eliminate ugly clutter and make the entire presentation much more cohesive.
If you haven’t explored grid layouts, I suggest that you begin using them with your next presentation. You’ll save so much time and energy, you’ll wonder how you ever designed PowerPoint slides without them!
7.Incorporate Implied Movement to Provide Direction
Have you ever looked at a PowerPoint slide or an advertisement and been unable to instantly tell what you were supposed to focus on? Perhaps there wasn’t an obvious direction for your eyes to take or the entire thing felt needlessly cluttered. If you’re using a grid layout and white space, you’ve already gotten rid of the clutter. However, to truly direct each reader’s eyes through the information in the desired way, it’s helpful to incorporate implied movement into your designs.
Implied movement is one of my favourite design tools, and it’s easy to incorporate. Simply use images, shapes, positive and negative space, repeated design elements or actual lines to tap into the design principal of leading lines. In our example, your eyes are instantly drawn upward and to the right because of the implied movement within the image. When you combine this with the careful usage of white space, everyone’s attention will go to the words in the upper right hand corner.
PowerPoint has a huge impact on ASX presentations, but people are bored with old and overly simplistic choices such as slides filled with nothing but bullet points. If you want to grab attention and hold onto it throughout your ASX presentation, you need to take full advantage of all of the graphic design elements that work within the PowerPoint program. Make your ASX presentations visually stunning presentations.
Find out if you’re on the right track by receiving a free assessment of one of your PowerPoint presentations.