What is a professional PowerPoint presentation?
A professional PowerPoint presentation meets several criteria. It would be tedious to list them all, as they are variable in nature and fall into several different categories. On the other hand, there are many different ways to use PowerPoint. Projected presentations, printed presentations, presentations sent as PDFs, looping animated presentations, etc. But if all of the different criteria have one thing in common, it’s that they are all related to how the audience will perceive the message that the presentation and presenter wish to deliver.
The primary function of a PowerPoint presentation is to display slides, of course, but it also serves to help the audience learn about the topic at hand, by providing the necessary information to follow the speech and understand its reasoning and logic. The criteria enabling the creation of a professional presentation can be grouped into 3 broad categories: the structure, the design and the dynamic.
The structure of a PowerPoint presentation.
This category is certainly the most important, and often the most neglected. There’s a reason for this: it is the category that requires the most distance from the content of the presentation. When you are highly familiar with a topic, all of its facets exist simultaneously in your head, and the order in which they are presented seems to be of little importance. Let’s consider an example. If I tell you “the wolf eats the grandmother” or “what big eyes you have”, the story of Little Red Riding Hood likely springs instantly to mind. But a child who doesn’t know the story might just burst into tears, fearing that his grandmother will get eaten by a wolf. This is to say that it’s important to present the facts in an order appropriate for the audience’s knowledge level. An order that helps them understand.
But that’s not all. An audience member watching a PowerPoint presentation isn’t reading a book. The mechanics aren’t the same. His level of attention is different, and his time is limited. He’s probably there to learn something. It is therefore essential that you rapidly deliver information that will pique his curiosity.
This content organisation work can be carried out in advance by a presentation consultancy agency.
The design of a PowerPoint presentation.
PowerPoint presentations are most commonly used in B to B communication. For a long time, this type of communication was defined as “corporate” and met criteria that were somewhat strict and conventional, and decidedly not funky.
These rules have changed. We now live in a world of images and design, with varied, omnipresent graphic conventions based on a common value: quality. There are no more distinctions between general public and professional cultures. There is therefore no valid reason to communicate differently in B-to-B and B-to-C, except for the topics covered. Quality has become the norm.
For an eye-catching PowerPoint, it is no longer enough to know how to use PowerPoint; you must be familiar with certain rules of graphic communication and storytelling. Luckily, to meet this requirement, there are more and more training programs on the creation of PowerPoint presentations, as well as specialised communication agencies. These agencies take care of presentations’ overall design and can significantly improve the audience’s interest level and understanding of the message
The dynamic of a PowerPoint presentation.
How can you possibly interest viewers, learners and decision-makers with a sequence of static, visually identical slides, when their daily lives are filled with stylish NETFLIX series, increasingly spectacular visual effects, YouTube videos, and jaw-dropping computer-generated images?
“Traditional” PowerPoint presentations no longer stand up to this culture of the moving image. The idea is not to compete with these high-budget productions, but to adopt their codes and effectiveness. A presentation’s dynamic thus relies on a balanced blend of inspiring images, pithy educational animations and the integration of relevant videos, to craft a moment containing a variety of informational styles that will increase attention and comprehension.
This dynamic makes it possible to leave an overall impression, perhaps even an emotion, that the audience can more easily retain and pass on by word of mouth or on the social networks.
These techniques can be implemented by PowerPoint experts, who know how to wield all kinds of digital creation tools, integrate various media formats and create impactful original animations.
PowerPoint, the only media format that companies can modify.
First and foremost, giving a PowerPoint presentation means communicating. PowerPoint is therefore a media format, and certainly the one most commonly used by companies worldwide. The growth of PowerPoint agencies enables companies to communicate more effectively, in a more professional and modern manner, while preserving the tool’s flexibility.
In a world governed by change, possessing a communication tool that makes it possible to broadcast strong, dynamic messages while retaining control over the content increases the reactiveness and independence of businesses that wish to present to their employees and clients the image of a company that respects its audience’s attention.
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