Home  › Search › Paid Search
john-gagnon-iceberg

Engage & Impress with PowerPoint: Tips for Digital Marketing Presentations

  |  December 12, 2013   |  Comments

Few applications have the capacity for beauty and carnage as PowerPoint. Columnist John Gagnon from Bing shares tips to help digital marketers engage and impress with presentations.

Few applications have the capacity for beauty and carnage that PowerPoint does. A perfectly beautiful idea can be destroyed with bad slides. A simple presentation can turn into Frankenslide.

On the other hand, thoughtful PowerPoint can clarify and focus your communications like nothing else. As digital marketers, it's critical that you communicate clearly and effectively to clients, team members and prospects. If you don't, you could miss out on persuading co-workers, closing the deal or even a promotion.

john-gagnon-iceberg

Digital marketing (and search marketing in particular) is full of rich detail you can share in a presentation. Often times, it's simply too much information. Below, we'll walk through 2 categories of tips:

8 Presentations Tips to Help You Engage & Impress

Let's get straight to the bullet points. Here are basic tactics that will help you create and refine presentations that engage and impress:

1. Don't start with PowerPoint. Seriously.

  • Write it on paper or use Word first. 
  • Organize. Make categories.
  • Then move it to PowerPoint.

2. Use all the slides you need. Need all the slides you use.

  • 100 slides for a 15-minute presentation? Okay.
  • 8 slides for an 18-minute presentation? Okay.

3. One idea per slide.

4. Write headlines, not titles.

  • Tell your audience what to think.
  • Use complete sentences.
  • A title is, "Mobile Trends." A headline is, "Mobile use in search will double by 2016."
  • A headline tells your story; a title just sits there.
  • Use font sizes greater than 24pt.

5. Build a progress bar (wayfinding) into your deck.

  • Label slides with the category topic, and numbers for each point.
  • Wayfinding hints should be in the same place on each slide, using the same design element.

6. Use images intelligently.

  • Choose images that are all the same style.
  • Choose images that support your brand.
  • Choose images that can add dimension to an idea. A picture of a train station to go with "logistics", for example.

7. Less is more.

  • Avoid transitions, animations and sound.
  • Keep it simple.
  • Do not clutter.

8. Open strong, close strong.

  • Try using a shocking statistic relevant to your story.
  • Debunk a popular myth.
  • Don't dribble off at the end - tell your audience what you expect: "Let's answer your questions now".
  • Have a call to action.

Presenting Data in Presentations

Focus isn't just what you do, it's what you choose not to do. Digital marketers have the unique challenge of choosing which data to focus on, and which data to leave out. It also means, removing redundant information or unnecessary labels to bring clarity. Put concisely, it's about removing chartjunk and increasing your data-ink ratio.

john-gagnon-chart

Here are some common tips for presenting data in PowerPoint:

  • Avoid repetition of information (extra zeroes, or redundancy between titles, axis, and legends).
  • Use strong contrast when picking colors for chart lines/bars and backgrounds.
  • Legends on top for quick reference (with 2 or more values).
  • Put vertical labels at 45 degrees, not 90 degrees.
  • When using tables, use columns for comparison.

It's not exhaustive, but this list helps to avoid common mistakes.

If you're giving a longer presentation, check out Nancy Duarte's TED Talk to see her dissect the rhythm of Martin Luther King's great speech. You'll leave with a sense of what's behind some of the best speeches in the world.

Presentation is an art form. I would love to hear what tips you have to share in the comments below! 

ClickZ Live New York What's New for 2015?
You spoke, we listened! ClickZ Live New York (Mar 30-Apr 1) is back with a brand new streamlined agenda. Don't miss the latest digital marketing tips, tricks and tools that will make you re-think your strategy and revolutionize your marketing campaigns. Super Saver Rates are available now. Register today!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John Gagnon

John Gagnon is a Bing Ads Evangelist (aka “search nerd”) at Microsoft. He has worked for both Bing Ads and Google AdWords, and is a frequent speaker at digital marketing conferences such as SES, SMX, and others. He has advised hundreds of clients ranging from Microsoft teams like Windows and Internet Explorer to small businesses like local garage door repair shops just getting started.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get the ClickZ Search newsletter delivered to you. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

UPCOMING TRAINING

Featured White Papers

Google My Business Listings Demystified

Google My Business Listings Demystified
To help brands control how they appear online, Google has developed a new offering: Google My Business Locations. This whitepaper helps marketers understand how to use this powerful new tool.

5 Ways to Personalize Beyond the Subject Line

5 Ways to Personalize Beyond the Subject Line
82 percent of shoppers say they would buy more items from a brand if the emails they sent were more personalized. This white paper offer five tactics that will personalize your email beyond the subject line and drive real business growth.

WEBINARS

    Information currently unavailable

Jobs

    • Lead Generation Specialist
      Lead Generation Specialist (The Oxford Club) - BaltimoreThe Oxford Club is seeking a talented writer/marketer to join our growing email lead-generation...
    • Health Marketing Editor
      Health Marketing Editor (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreCome flex your intellectual muscle as part of Agora, Inc’s (http://agora-inc.com/) legal team...
    • Technical Business Analyst
      Technical Business Analyst (OmniVista Health) - BaltimoreOmniVista Health is looking to add a Technical Business Analyst to our expanding team...