The Purpose of a PowerPoint Presentation

Posted on April 15, 2009 in Tips & Tricks by Tobias Schelle | Tagged: , ,

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purpose of a powerpoint presentation

Written by Tobias Schelle. Follow me on Twitter

Microsoft PowerPoint has become commonplace in almost company. The purpose for everyone is to communicate effectively. That is, to inform or get informed, with CLARITY and UNDERSTANDING.

So what’s the purpose of a PowerPoint presentation? Create maximum impact in minimal time and persuade the audience to take action, physically or mentally. If used right, a PowerPoint presentation can:

  • Amplify your message
  • Accelerate information absorption
  • Assist comprehension and hence faster decision making

Presenting today

There is nothing more boring than a long, generic PowerPoint presentation. And 99% are: loads of slides filled with bullets.

Moreover, presenters generally tend to squeeze in too much information – much of which is out of line of the original purpose of their presentation. Too many points on a single slide or long paragraphs do not work. Remember, PowerPoint is a competent slide manager and presentation tool, not a word processor. The sight of a text heavy slide will make your audience lean back and lose interest. Instead, follow up with extra information in a document at the end of the presentation.

The animation trap

Using visual aid makes all the difference. But making your presentation visual does not mean you should have something flying out of every corner of a slide. Over utilization of these PowerPoint inbuilt animations will give it an unprofessional look and I doubt it reflects the identity of company.

A new approach

PowerPoint works best for presenting things visually. An appropriate image helps deliver the message more efficiently, and more importantly, it makes it  memorable. So the key is to use more visuals and fewer words.

Effective PowerPoint presentations that appropriately represent your organization should have the following:

  • The presentation should be consistently designed (Timesaver: templates)
  • Choose a color palette that goes with your company’s other marketing collaterals.
  • Use clean and simple graphics/charts
  • No more than 6 words per slide
  • Use pictures that reinforces your words

A good rule for effective presentations is to avoid mixing reading and listening. If your audience is reading the points on the screen, they are simultaneously not listening to you, and vice-versa. It is a very inefficient way of getting your message across. After all, your goal is to make sure they leave the room with YOUR point of view

For inspiration, check out a presentation I made a week ago:A Story on Slide Design

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  1. Georgina MacInnis says:

    I’ve been trying for the past 48 hours to download a copy of the samples offered. No luck.
    The samples are e-mailed but it is impossible to open them.
    I’m disappointed! Why purchase a package when the same will not work.
    Maybe you can advise.

  2. @Georgina

    I just tested it and it works. If you don’t receive it within 5 minutes, try to check you junk folder.


  3. Excellent PowerPoint! Loved it, Mr Schelle!

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