Designers are important people. They turn the ideas in our heads into beautifully crafted documents, images and presentations. Getting the details right is tricky to perfect and it takes years to become a master designer, which is why they often come with a pretty hefty price tag. If a designer just isn’t in your budget, don’t worry. Here are some tricks to make a presentation look presentable, without blowing your budget on a designer.
1) Keep It Simple. If you’re creating a presentation for school children, slide animations with text flying in and spinning around is maybe acceptable, otherwise there is no place for them in a professional presentation. Keep transitions and text simple and effective.
2) Less is more. Death by PowerPoint usually starts with a small novel written on each slide, and a presentation that is a hundred slides long. Keep text and slide numbers to the bare minimum, because you will lose everyone’s concentration very quickly and they won’t read it.
3) Use tasteful images. A picture can get across a message instantly, if you can use a picture in place of text, do. But keep it tasteful, keep it classy and keep it high res, because nothing looks worse than a low res image on a presentation (apart from a slide full of text…)
4) Use the in built design tools. Microsoft are looking out for you, their range of pre-designed slide layouts are actually pretty good, choose one that fits the purpose of your presentation, keep it uniform throughout and it will look slick.
5) Titles and headings. A title tells people what to expect, what is written below – so it makes sense to use them. Headings tell people you’re writing about different things on the same slide, so they can easily navigate the content. It makes it look more ordered and less like you’ve just dumped all your thoughts about that topic onto a slide.
6) Spell it right and spell it consistently. One of the easiest was of making your professional presentation look amateur is with careless spelling errors, spellcheck it and double check the spellchecker. Make sure you’re also consistent with the words you’re spelling and you spell them the same way each time.