Effective powerpoint presentation requires great PowerPoint skills. However, most business professionals aren’t exactly proficient in graphic design or PowerPoint slide design. This is exactly what ActivePresence’s survey of over 4,000 professionals revealed – the third most challenging aspect in presenting is PowerPoint skills. What this means is that designing PowerPoint slides that can effectively communicate the content is a science in and of itself. Fortunately, high-quality PowerPoint templates do exist. With the right templates, you don’t need to be a graphic designer or PowerPoint specialist to build effective slides!
How To Make The Most Of Presentation Templates
Well-designed, professional PowerPoint templates can help you save several hours. After all, you don’t need to worry about building and designing slides and infographics from scratch. This means you can focus on your content, and work on engaging your audience with your onstage presence!
That said, here are 5 tips you can follow to make the most of the presentation templates.
Tip #1: Define your presentation goal
Before you even go looking for the perfect PowerPoint presentation templates or Google Slide templates (if you’re a Slides user), you should define your presentation goal first.
- Are you looking to inform, educate, inspire or entertain your target audience?
- Are you hoping to get more leads and sales for your business?
- Or do you want to establish yourself or your brand as an authority in your industry?
Your goal will dictate how you structure the rest of your powerpoint presentation. It will help you pick the right slide template that will ultimately help you achieve your goal.
Tip #2. Create a presentation outline
A well-structured presentation often begins with an outline. By creating an outline, you can organize how your presentation will flow from beginning to end. It helps you focus on the most salient points relevant to your powerpoint presentation.
The good thing is your outline can also double as your presentation’s agenda. Here is an example of a PowerPoint slide template you can use to present the agenda to your target audience:
Tip #3. Choose the best PowerPoint template for your presentation
Selecting the right slide templates should be relatively quick and easy once you’ve identified your presentation goal and the topics you’re going to cover.
We can broadly classify business PowerPoint templates into the following categories:
1. Timeline PowerPoint Templates
Timeline infographics are versatile and widely used in all types of powerpoint presentations. Timelines are great for showing a chronological arrangement of events – everything from historical, current, and future events.
Timelines are great for visualizing and highlighting important dates. In the case of project management, you can use it to present your project plans, milestones and events.
Here are a few timeline and planning infographics templates you can download:
2. Information Infographic Templates
One real challenge business presenters face is how to communicate more with less. It’s not easy to present data in a visually compelling way. That’s where Information Infographic templates come handy. With infographics, you can organize your content to look clean and clutter-free. Below are some good examples of PowerPoint templates that creatively present a lot of information in a concise manner.
3. Process-Related PowerPoint Templates
Process templates are great for providing a visual overview of the steps in a particular process. For instance, you can number a series of process steps from 1 to 10 or A to Z. This makes it easy and simple for your users to follow.
Process infographics usually follow a left-to-right flow or top-to-bottom approach. Some templates also make it easy for you to add some notes so you can clarify each step. Here are some process-related PPT templates:
4. Animated PowerPoint Templates
One of the best ways to ensure your target audience don’t drift off in the middle of your presentation is by using animated PowerPoint templates. It helps keep their attention, and their eyes glued to your slides. PowerPoint Templates like this are great for enticing them to follow your call to action. Here are a few animated powerpoint templates you may want to use:
5. Complete PowerPoint Backgrounds
The right background can make the difference between a good presentation and a bad one. An interesting powerpoint background helps make your presentation message come alive and so much more appealing.
If you’re strapped for time, you can use complete PowerPoint background and themes to build your presentations:
Tip #4: Replace the placeholder content with your own
The right PPT template will not require much tweaking apart from replacing the obvious placeholder content with your own. However, you still want to make your powerpoint slides look unique and professional.
You want to make sure your ‘branding’ is present. Add your logo to all the slides. Use your corporate colors and fonts. Make sure everything’s consistent throughout your entire ppt presentation. This may sound like a lot of work, but trust me, working off of a template is much easier than designing powerpoint slides from scratch!
It’s so tempting to just copy and paste entire sentences and paragraphs from your notes onto your powerpoint slides. If you’re presenting in front of an audience, this is a big no-no. Why? Because nobody wants to listen to you read your presentation slides out loud!
Always keep your presentation goal in mind when designing and editing your ppt slides. The truth is that you’re the star of the show, not your slides. Your slides are there to support your message. It’s your visual aid so your audience can understand what you’re discussing on stage.
So, when editing your slides, remove all the elements that don’t add any value to your powerpoint presentation. In short, delete anything that will distract your audience’s attention from you.
Need more tips? Here are several hacks you can follow to transform your powerpoint slides into engaging presentations.
Tip #5: Practice your presentation
Not just once, twice, or thrice. When it comes to delivering powerful presentations, practice is key. Work on your speech and your body language. Time your presentation to make sure you don’t go beyond your allotted time.
Practice at the actual presentation venue so you can get a feel for the place. Test out the equipment you’re going to use in your presentation to avoid technical problems later on.
Stand at the very back – can you see your presentation slides? Can you read what’s on it? Make sure people can actually see what’s on the powerpoint slides. Otherwise, all those hours you spent looking for the right PowerPoint template and editing it to perfection would have been for nothing.
Coming in prepared will bring you closer to success. So, practice, practice, practice.
Conclusion: Ready To Start Working With Professional PPT Templates?
Professional PowerPoint templates are wonderful time savers. But really, it’s just a small part of what makes a successful presentation. Follow the steps we have outlined in this article so you can finally deliver powerful presentations to your audience!
SlideUpLift is an online platform to help professionals make compelling presentations using principles of vision science and storytelling. The platform contains an online library of pre-designed presentation templates that can be used across industries and functions
Check out our library of Free PPT templates which is weekly updated to serve the presentation needs of professionals. You will find out the simplicity and ease in downloading the editable template, filling it with your content and building world-class presentations in just a few clicks.