WHO, WHAT And WHERE – The Three Checks Of An Effective PowerPoint Presentation

July 2, 2020| slideuplift
WHO, WHAT And WHERE – The Three Checks Of An Effective PowerPoint Presentation

Building an effective PowerPoint presentation is part art and part science. This article discusses the three most important factors that form the basis of every successful PowerPoint presentation.

In this article, we will detail the three most important factors that form the basic foundation of every successful PowerPoint presentation.


Knowing your target audience is the first key step in making your PowerPoint presentation. The more you find out about your audience, the more you can adapt your message to the interests, values, beliefs, and language level of the target audience. The objective is to find common ground with your audience.

Ask yourself the following questions, to get into the shoes of your audience –

  1. Who will be there? – age, occupation, field, education, experiences, preconceptions, background
  2. Why are they there and do they really want to be there – their motivations?
  3. What are they expecting? What benefit will they get from listening to you?
  4. What do they know already about your subject?
  5. Are they likely to understand technical terms and expressions?
  6. What has gone on before your business presentation?
  7. What questions are they likely to ask?
  8. What do you want to get from giving the presentation? (your objective)
  9. What do they want to get from your business presentation? (their benefit from attending)

Asking questions like this will focus you on what actually needs to be delivered. Once you collect data about your target audience, you are ready to summarize your findings and select the structure, content, and slide design that is best suited to your particular audience.

To summarize, each PowerPoint presentation should have its design and content, tailored specifically to the type of target audience. For example, a business pitch to investors clearly needs to highlight the problem you are trying to solve, and how your innovation will address the problem. Given, the limited attention span of investors, it needs to be short and to the point. Here is an example of a Pitch Deck

Pitch Deck Example

Pitch Deck Example

View Pitch Deck Template

Click on the link to find a few more pre-designed Business Presentation examples that keep the audience in mind. Always remember that our PowerPoint presentation design always starts with the audience’s needs and expectations. 


Once you are clear on who you are delivering to, the next important question is, what exactly do you want to deliver. The message is the key. It is the whole reason you are building the presentation slide. Hence you should be absolutely clear on your objective, and what is the key message you want the audience to take away with them. The action you want the audience to do, once they leave the PowerPoint presentation, is known as the Call to Action. If your audience does not know what they should do, after watching your business presentation, then it has been a futile effort. And this Call to Action cannot be the same for all audiences, even for the same topic. The following framework will help you develop key messaging for your target audience

  1. First, think about the reason you are giving this business presentation. What is your objective? Are you trying to spread awareness about a cause, or trying to impress some information on a target group?
  2. Once you are clear about this, decide, and develop the PowerPoint design and ppt slides keeping the key message in mind.
  3. Next, write down your talking points, arrange them, and then split them in PowerPoint slides, to create the outline of the PowerPoint presentation content. Make sure you keep in mind the first check,The Audiencewhile creating the content and outline.

Now that you have the content, the outline, and a basic slide design in mind; it is time to address the where of the presentation.


This check corresponds to the environment in which you are giving the business presentation. The place of presentation affects the presentation design heavily. The PowerPoint slide design you make on your personal screen might look totally different in the place you are presenting in. The screen size, projector quality, aspect ratio, sound quality, size of the room, lighting in the room, etc. are all factors that affect how your business presentation looks to your audience.

Other than that, the size of the audience also affects the PowerPoint slide design. Are you presenting to a group of 10 or a crowd of 1000? Or is it online and to be viewed on screens and devices? For example., the size and type of the font you can use depends on this, as the content might become illegible to the audience.

As a lot of these factors become unpredictable before the business presentation, it is best to play as safe as you can. So here are some do’s and don’ts, to avoid the most common mistakes.

  1. Never use red text. When projected, the red text becomes really bright and illegible and puts a strain on the eyes.
  2. Always use a classic typeface. Ditch the fancy fonts, as mostly they cause the audience to work hard in reading the text. Google Fonts is a great way to test fonts.
  3. Do not use bright blue and bright red on the same PowerPoint slide. It strains the eyes. Similarly, bright red and bright green together are also a bad idea, as it is the most common type of color blindness.
  4. Choose the scale of your infographics, and the size of the fonts, according to the size of the room and audience. If your audience can’t see or read your PowerPoint slides, then your effort is wasted.
  5. Don’t use low-resolution images.
  6. Don’t overload individual PowerPoint slides too much. It will definitely appear messy and incomprehensible.
  7. Pretend as if WordArt and ClipArt features do not exist in PowerPoint.

Below is an example of a poorly designed presentation slide. 

The presentation below is verbose, has too many bullet points, and smaller font sizes that are not legible.


The below template can be used for presenting the same data in an engaging format. It gives a quick snapshot of data that can be easily understood by the audience at a glance.

Executive Summary Template Example

Executive Summary Template

View Executive Summary Template

Final Step:

Now that you know your target audience, the exact message you want to deliver, and the environment in which you will be delivering the business presentation; the next step is designing your business presentation content into impactful PowerPoint Slides. Organizing your presentation content into a visually engaging story is arguably the best way to present.

Look at one example which shows the power of strong visuals in communicating your point.  Looking at the PowerPoint slide, you immediately get the idea about what that slide design talks about. The audience can easily make out that the presenter is talking about business growth strategies or the next steps for business growth. So even if the audience does not read the rest of the text, the message from this PowerPoint slide is loud and clear to them. This information will remain with the audience, even if they forget the rest, which was your goal in the first place.

Growth Template

Growth Template

View Growth Ladder Template

The below 30 60 90 day plan template is a creative slide design that can be used to highlight business priorities and showcase your effective planning in a very engaging manner.

Planning Template Example

30 60 90 Day Plan Template

View 30 60 90 day plan Template

Another example of a visually appealing PowerPoint slide that can be used to illustrate a timeline in a creative way.

Timeline Template Example

Puzzle Timeline Template

View Puzzle Timeline Template

Even if you have text-heavy PowerPoint slides, you can still make them look visually amazing by using infographic PowerPoint Templates. Infographics serve as a visual aid and help keep the audience engaged as they convert your dull-looking slides into engaging ones! Check out these 9 types of infographic templates to make effective presentations

Or simply head over to SlideUpLift to download pre-built professional PowerPoint templates. It will save you tons of time and your PowerPoint slides are guaranteed to look great. These business presentation templates are 100% editable, instantly downloadable, and are specifically designed to meet professionals’ PowerPoint needs.


In nutshell, the design of a business presentation should be appealing when presented, resonate with the target audience, and reinforce the message of your content. So from now on for every PowerPoint slide of every business presentation you make, always be crystal clear on The Who, The What, and The Where of the presentation. These three checks will ensure that your presentation never fails to inspire. Each PowerPoint slide of your business presentation will completely align with your Target Audience, Message, and Environment and you will definitely leave the impact you want with your presentation.

Now you don’t have to scour the web to find out the right templates. Download our PowerPoint Templates from within PowerPoint. See how?

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Categories: blog, Business Presentation Tips