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How to Up Your PowerPoint Game

Back when PowerPoint first came out, it didn’t take a lot of finesse to create something visually appealing and exciting. Nowadays, however, PowerPoint and its similar counterparts like Keynote and Prezi, are old hats. It is no longer sufficient to add some generic photos and bullet points that outline your speech to grab your viewers’ attention.

In fact, such uninspiring presentations have led to the coinage of the phrase “death by PowerPoint” to describe PowerPoint strategies that fall flat and leave those forced to watch them on the verge of sleep.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when crafting your next presentation:

• Avoid the following kiss-of-death PowerPoint photo types. Some images have been overused to the point of having little to no meaning. This, consequently, leaves viewers bored because the photos add nothing to the material covered in the presentations. Archery targets, cogs, business people preparing to race or grouped around a monitor, jigsaw pieces, hand gestures, and globes are among these types of images.

• Instead, think outside of the box when choosing photos for your PowerPoint presentations. For example, pass over an image of a handshake to represent a partnership and choose something more untraditional like cheese and crackers or a needle and thread.

• Don’t hesitate to use some of Microsoft’s newly released tools to showcase your images. For example, you can create animations using Morph or try things like frames or transparencies. However, when using such tools and enhancements, make sure they fit the overall theme and feel of your presentation. As such, your extras will be a seamless part of your PowerPoint and not stick out like a sore thumb.

• Most importantly, focus on the content of your PowerPoint presentation. That is, after all, the purpose – to inform and effectively convey ideas. Your photos are meant to complement your content, not overshadow it.