How to improve your business presentations in 2021
PowerPoint can be the tool that takes your business meetings from good to extraordinary. When used correctly, PowerPoint slides are an excellent way to make your presentation more memorable and effective. Here you’ll find 14 ways to improve your business presentation to wow your audience and make them want more. You’ll discover how to improve your public speaking skills, as well as your slides’ design!
PowerPoint has gained something of a bad reputation in the last years. You might have heard that it is not good, that it is distracting, or even boring. We have all probably experienced the “Death by PowerPoint” syndrome at some point. However, PowerPoint presentations also have unlimited potential as some of the most effective communication tools for public speaking. The human brain processes images and visual information up to 60,000 times faster than written text. PowerPoint slides are an excellent way to give your audience a more graphic take of your message. It’s an incredibly effective way to highlight the most critical points, showcase data trends, and make your presentation overall more memorable.
PowerPoint presentations can help get a new client or gain a new investor. In the case of B2B companies, presentations are crucial since they are vital to showcase all your experience and previous work. PowerPoint presentations can even help your online meetings! In short, PowerPoint is an outstanding communication tool that businesses should take advantage of! Here you’ll find 14 ways you can work to improve your business presentation.
1. Work on your delivery
First things first! Truth is, it doesn’t matter how good your PowerPoint slide’ design is if you’re not prepared for speaking in public. A PowerPoint presentation is just an aid to get your message across, not a crutch. Your whole presentation is much more than your slides, from how you introduce yourself to how convincing you’re and how comfortable you’re in front of an audience. Confidence and body language can be huge factors when talking about enhancing business presentations. Make sure that you know your presentation’s content inside out and that you’re prepared for the task.
2. Be strategic with your colors
A huge aspect of the visual aspect is the colors you pick for your presentation. First of all, it’s essential to pick colors with high contrast. This will make the elements in your slides easier to pick out. For example, yellow text over a white background is probably not the best idea, as it’ll be very difficult to read. You can also use your colors strategically by highlighting the most critical elements and concepts in brighter, louder colors.
To Improve your business presentations and give them a professional final look, it’s also essential to take into consideration color coordination. It will help you to not go over the top with colors and make your presentation an eye-sore. PowerPoint offers an array of premade color schemes that work well together. But you can also create your own color palettes to fit your tastes and preferences.
If you want to go the extra mile and improve even more your business presentations, you can also take into account the psychology of color. It has been proven that specific colors are commonly associated with specific values and ideas. For example, the color blue is often associated with calmness and trustworthiness. Green is often seen as related to nature and health. And yellow usually gives off a more “happy” vibe. You can use this to give your convey to your audience a specific feeling or idea! Here you can find some of the free best blue, green, red, pink, yellow, and purple PowerPoint templates 24Slides’ designers have to offer. You can download them, edit them, mix-and-match slides from different packs, or just use them as inspiration.
3. Focus on your business presentation branding
And talking about colors, a great option is to use your brand color scheme! PowerPoint presentation is an excellent chance to make your brand instantly more memorable. A truly great customized PowerPoint presentation will make an impact on your audience and won’t let them forget what your product and your brand are about.
This an extreme example, but you can see how every slide is product-themed. Even if you don’t want to go in such a straightforward way, presentations can also convey to your audience an idea about yourself. An all-white default slide design can make your presentation look lazy and last-minute. But you can use this to your advantage too. For example, a custom design can help you showcase that your brand is all about creativity. Or that your business is all about reliability and a detail-oriented approach. It’s one thing to tell your values to your audience, but your PowerPoint presentation can help you show it too.
That’s why, when working on professional PowerPoint design, 24Slides offers three different style guidelines. Corporate is the best choice for people trying to highlight the professionalism and seriousness of their business. On the other hand, playful is perfect for those trying to convey a more friendly, fun, and easygoing image of their brand. And creative is a great middle-ground for anyone who still wants the playful style’s visual appeal but still keeping it business-like.
So, think about it. How do you want your audience to perceive your brand? What values and ideas you want to be associated with it? You might be surprised by how much a presentation can say about your brand and your business!
4. Avoid too much text
Many people feel tempted just to write word by word what they will say in their presentation. However, this is one of the worst mistakes anyone can make when enhancing a business presentation. It’s the easiest way to bore your audience out of their minds. It’ll also make your presentation a hindrance rather than an aid. People in the audience will most likely be distracted trying to read everything on your slides instead of listening to you.
You should not need to read point by point through your slides. Rather, they should be there to complement your speech and help the audience visualize and highlight key points. To improve your business presentation, identify keywords and main ideas and work your slides around them. If you want to go all the way, you can even avoid using complete sentences altogether!
5. Make the most of PowerPoint audiovisual tools
Following the last point, the key to avoiding too much text is to replace it with strategic audiovisual aids. Think if you can convey an idea in a more visual way. Can an image say what you’re trying to say in a complete sentence? Then go for it!
PowerPoint also offers a ton of visual and audiovisual tools to improve your business presentations. For example, icons are a great way to reduce word-clogged slides, as they can convey complex ideas and categories in a very small space. You can also add audio and videos to your slides to make your presentations more engaging and eye-catching.
Another feature that you can take advantage of is the animation and transitions option. While many people avoid them, they can be a huge plus when used in moderation. They can help you highlight key points in your presentations and make them look more seamless and “flowy.” You can even use them to generate intrigue and audience engagement by not revealing all your slides’ content in one go. Just remember to use it in moderation! Not every single bullet point needs a transition effect.
Design Ideas tool is another feature to take into account if you have a Microsoft 365 subscription. It is an intuitive tool that will easily transform your slide content into a more visually appealing design.
6. Data visualization
This is a must when talking about enhancing PowerPoint business presentations. If you’re trying to show your audience some numbers, just mentioning the data out loud will not be very effective. Including graphs and charts will make it easier for the audience to visualize what the numbers actually mean. And, they are also great ways to showcase trends and tendencies.
PowerPoint has an automatic, smart feature for adding different graphs and charts directly to your slides. Line graphs, spider charts, pie graphs… You have a whole array of options to choose from! But you can even add your own customizable PowerPoint graphs too! Check out the 24Slides Templates platform to download some great free graphs, diagrams, and chart templates that will make your presentation more personal and unique.
As you can probably see from most of these points, turning your slides into a presentation that will make an impression on your audience is no easy task. You must invest time and effort in order to get an outstanding customized PowerPoint. That’s why more and more people are outsourcing their business presentations all around the world.
Outsourcing presentation design allows you to free an incredible amount of time. According to our surveys, the average manager spends around 4 hours a week working on PowerPoint presentations. By delegating this task to an outside provider, people are able to focus on more vital, core tasks for their businesses. And, the final product will be way better than what you could have achieved on your own!
24Slides’ professional PowerPoint designers are dedicated to creating and enhancing business presentations for companies all around the world. Their expertise is precisely what you need to take a presentation from good to extraordinary!
8. Use humor
Humor is a vastly underestimated tool to use in your presentations! You can use humor to break the ice and begin your presentation with the right foot. In many cases, humor will also help the audience feel closer to you. And it can even make them more receptive to your presentations’ message.
Of course, humor is not a viable option for every single presentation. You should consider who your audience is and the meeting’s tone before going all-in with a joke. However, it is still a great option to have in your toolbox!
9. Work on your audience engagement
Audience engagement can make all the difference for your business presentation. Making the audience feel like part of the presentation is key for keeping them intrigued and interested. Even something as simple as starting with a brainstorming session can make all the difference.
There are many tools you can use to boost your audience engagement. For example, depending on your presentation’s topic, you can use polls to show that there’s a common pain point for all of them. Or you can even quiz your audience at key points of your presentation to make sure they are taking in the most important information. Technology nowadays offers a wide array of options to make your presentations more interactive and to let your audience be part of it.
Storytelling is another classic tool for all public speakers, and you’ve probably heard about it before. But learning how to use this technique correctly is an art form! It’s not just about telling a random story to be entertaining. Storytelling’s primary purpose is to create an emotional connection with your audience and make them care about your presentation and product. It is a great way to make abstract ideas and services and bring them closer to your audience’s experiences.
11. Simple, clean formatting
Sometimes, less is more! You don’t need to go overboard with design to make a business presentation that looks professional. Minimalism is an excellent choice for those with limited design experience. To make your slides look clean and sharp, focus on quality instead of quantity. Make sure that your images are all in high resolution, that your fonts are suitable for your presentation, and that your icons are all style-consistent. These are the kind of details that can make all the difference in a minimalistic presentation.
Even something as simple as making sure your slide elements are aligned and having a clean layout works wonders for enhancing business presentations. 24Slides fix-up service is all about working on “cleaning up” PowerPoint slides. You can send our designers your slides, and they will make sure they are as sharp and polished as possible!
12. Outline your presentation
Many people might feel this like a waste of time, but outlining can help you improve your business presentations. This will help you make sure that you’re covering all the crucial points in your presentation and defining beforehand what information and data you need to create the best possible presentation.
It can also be handy to think beforehand some key aspects of your presentation. What is your goal with this presentation? Who is your audience? What previous knowledge do they have about this topic? Is there any time limitation to take into consideration when working on my PowerPoint presentation? Asking yourself these questions will make your presentation creation process more effective and strategic.
13. Take extra care of the start and the end
The beginning and the end of your presentations are strategic key points to take into consideration. Paying extra attention to them is an excellent, simple way to improve a business presentation. The start of your presentation is what will set the tone for the rest of it. It is the first impression your audience will take from you and the message you’re trying to convey. How you present yourself can give you more authority and make them more willing to listen to what you have to say!
On the other hand, the end is most likely what your audience will take away from your presentation. A strong closure should summarize the critical points of your presentation and have a Call To Action.
Finally (and this can’t be stressed enough), you need to practice. You’re not going to get it perfect from the get-go; it is simply impossible. If you genuinely want to make an outstanding presentation and wow your audience, I’m sorry to tell you, and you will need to put in the effort. There’s just no easy way around!