8 Golden Rules for a Great Presentation
Most of us have experienced boring and discouraging presentations, with overcrowding text, garish colors, and tacky visuals. But there are a few simple rules that not only let you avoid the audience’s disappointment but also make your presentation inspiring, sightly, and memorable.
Read these eight golden rules below and forget about concerns while giving a great slide show.
#1 Use max six lines per slide
Almost all of us are visualizers – we memorize eye-catching, aesthetic pictures and the same rule runs on presentation slides. To awaken the attendees’ interest, slides should be clear and maintain contrast, but surely, there can’t be a wall of text on them. Not only it doesn’t attract but even repulses. Overload of text at slides is overwhelming for most people and can ruin your whole presentation.
Presentations give you the chance to tell your story and share your ideas. When you pack a slide with many different ideas, your chance for inspiring speech is gone. While looking through your slides, make sure they only communicate one idea per slide – it also reduces the amount of text on them. The optimal number of lines is 6. It allows attendees to focus on text but also on speaker’s voice at the same time.
#2 Ideal font size is 32
Your audience doesn’t have an eagle eye. When you put text on slides, use a font size no smaller than 30 points. The ideal option is 32. Don’t forget about attendees in last rows with a bit poorer view. The worst possible scenario for your presentation is the audience being unable to read the text on the screen.
#3 Use bright colors
More and more people pay attention to presentation design – not only the content. A good presentation should make your audience feel comfortable while reading. The color scheme cannot discourage them. Bright colors and minimalistic style help attendees perceive and then memorize important info. Moreover, it emphasizes contrast, which easily draws the audience’s attention.
#4 Use slides you really need
During your presentation, there is no slides limit. The only thing that constricts you is time, but it doesn’t mean you should spread your content over dozens of slides. Keep it simple – limit yourself to 10 or fewer. Look at each slide, paragraph, or graph scrupulously. Ask yourself what it brings to the presentation, and if it’s not necessary, get rid of it.
#5 Use max one line of text per bullet
If you decide to point text with bullets, don’t place whole ideas inside. This will turn your presentation into reading session – attendees will read off the text and your speaking skills won’t bring anything new into the meeting. This solution works out but in reports or documents. During your presentation try to use slides only to enhance your speech – broaden the bullet points’ lines by telling about them.
#6 Tell a narrative story
Share your views and show your ideas by telling a story. During your presentation be passionate, be excited, and show your interest in the topic – encouraged audience will do the same. It’s good to visualize what do you want to tell about. Create a compelling and catchy narrative: set the scene with some details, show the main problem by giving simple examples, try to evoke emotions and remember about the clear conclusion. It can spice up your presentation and illustrate your point. After all, everyone prefers to hear an interesting story than bare-bones pieces of information, don’t they?
#7 Use your website identification
While your speech may be perfect, the visuals you show can markedly boost or downgrade your message. Content is king, but don’t forget about the design. Integrity plays a big part here – while preparing the presentation, keep your slides design in style of your website. Take care of colors and font style. You can also add a watermark with your logo to the background. These simple operations cause that your audience gets to know your brand, possibly recognize in the future and associate with your great appearance. What’s more, placing a simple link or e-mail on every slide is also a good practice, especially when you share the presentation after the conference.
#8 Recommended time: 20 minutes
The time presentation takes depend on many factors. The amount of information to share is the most crucial – in some cases, it takes a while to share the whole idea. In fact, there is no such a thing as “perfect presentation length” but recommended time is about 20 minutes. It’s the optimal amount to keep your attendees focused, actively thinking, and fully engaged. Actually, regardless of how long your presentation lasts, it’s important to finish on time. The audience gets uneasy when you shorten their coffee break.
In fact, the main factor of your presentation success if your preparation, but any suggestions and pieces of advice are helpful. Remember that to make your performance a success, you need to take into account many issues. Be aware of most common problems and solutions as for speaking at events. While creating your next presentation keep this list at the back of your head and if you know any other tips, feel free to share in comments.