A lot of companies today provide presentation or PowerPoint outsourcing services. Have a presentation to make tomorrow? Send the content to a talented PowerPoint designer and he”ll create the slides for you. The objective almost always is to ‘make the slides look better’. This is what the client wants.
This post is meant for people who work on the slides; the PowerPoint Designer; he who is not going to deliver the presentation but is only going to make the slides look great. Remember: The secretary or subordinate who makes her bosses slides is also a PowerPoint Designer. If you are one such PowerPoint designer here are a few tips to make you awesome at your job.
1. Don’t jump the gun: Don’t open the software immediately and start creating the slides like a machine. Think about what is the task at hand. Find out the objective of the presentation. Go through the matter and understand the key message. Try to get into the shoes of the presenter and understand what is being said and why? Who the target audience is and what the presenter wants them to do?
2. Customise: Don’t treat all PPTs the same way. Do atleast one thing different in each PPT. Don’t copy paste the same template in every presentation. You cannot relax and try to replicate old successes. Create new successful PPTs every day.
3. Get creative ideas: A PowerPoint Designer is essentially a designer whose job is to make the slides look great. Not every client will give you the freedom to alter the content (most of them will not). If all you have to do is to decorate the slides then it is imperative that you keep getting new creative ideas. Get into the habit of reading design blogs and browsing albums of expert photographers. Get inspiration from presentations on slideshare (especially the winners of the World’s Best Presentation Contest which slideshare hosts ever year). Read more on getting creative ideas by clicking here.
4. Make a Presentation Brief: A presentation brief is a document which shares all the basic information about a presentation. Working with a brief give you complete control on the presentation and saves a lot of time. This is of immense help if you are not merely decorating the slides. This will tell you about the duration of the presentation; the target audience, the expectation from the presentation, etc. Click here to download the brief.
5. Seek active feedback: How often have you called up the client after the presentation and ask how did it go? What did he feel about the whole thing? Have a feedback form (ask your company to make one) and ask for 2 positive and 2 negative comments from your client. Use the positive ones as testimonials for future use.
6. Know what is expected of you and give the client more than they ask: This is a classic sales tip. At the end of the day we are all salesmen. You are providing a service and getting paid for it. Hence, the best way to exceed customers’ expectations is to deliver more. But first know what is being expected by the client. If he wants you to ‘jazz up’ the slides and make them look ‘cool’, ask him to show you a presentation which he thinks is cool. The world is very subjective; what is cool to you is bland to me. For some people animation is cool but to most presentation experts it is not. Discover the taste of your client and serve the right dish.
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