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8 Tips to Make the Best PowerPoint Presentations

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Bryan has worked in journalism and publishing for more than 15 years. For the last 10 years, he's covered the technology beat, including gadgets, social media, security, and web culture. Before working as a freelancer, Bryan was the Managing Editor for The Next Web. These days he spends his time at a number of publications, both online and off, including The New York Times, Popular Science, and The Next Web, among others. Read more...

The Microsoft PowerPoint ribbon on a computer monitor.

Slideshows are an intuitive way to share complex ideas with an audience, although they’re dull and frustrating when poorly executed. Here are some tips to make your Microsoft PowerPoint presentations sing while avoiding common pitfalls.

Table of Contents

Start with a goal, less is more, consider your typeface, make bullet points count, limit the use of transitions, skip text where possible, think in color, take a look from the top down, bonus: start with templates.

define a goal

It all starts with identifying what we’re trying to achieve with the presentation. Is it informative, a showcase of data in an easy-to-understand medium? Or is it more of a pitch, something meant to persuade and convince an audience and lead them to a particular outcome?

It’s here where the majority of these presentations go wrong with the inability to identify the talking points that best support our goal. Always start with a goal in mind: to entertain, to inform, or to share data in a way that’s easy to understand. Use facts, figures, and images to support your conclusion while keeping structure in mind (Where are we now and where are we going?).

I’ve found that it’s helpful to start with the ending. Once I know how to end a presentation, I know how best to get to that point. I start by identifying the takeaway—that one nugget that I want to implant before thanking everyone for their time—and I work in reverse to figure out how best to get there.

Your mileage, of course, may vary. But it’s always going to be a good idea to put in the time in the beginning stages so that you aren’t reworking large portions of the presentation later. And that starts with a defined goal.

avoid walls of text

A slideshow isn’t supposed to include everything. It’s an introduction to a topic, one that we can elaborate on with speech. Anything unnecessary is a distraction. It makes the presentation less visually appealing and less interesting, and it makes you look bad as a presenter.

This goes for text as well as images. There’s nothing worse, in fact, than a series of slides where the presenter just reads them as they appear. Your audience is capable of reading, and chances are they’ll be done with the slide, and browsing Reddit, long before you finish. Avoid putting the literal text on the screen, and your audience will thank you.

RELATED: How to Burn Your PowerPoint to DVD

use better fonts

Right off the bat, we’re just going to come out and say that Papyrus and Comic Sans should be banned from all PowerPoint presentations, permanently. Beyond that, it’s worth considering the typeface you’re using and what it’s saying about you, the presenter, and the presentation itself.

Consider choosing readability over aesthetics, and avoid fancy fonts that could prove to be more of a distraction than anything else. A good presentation needs two fonts: a serif and sans-serif. Use one for the headlines and one for body text, lists, and the like. Keep it simple. Veranda, Helvetica, Arial, and even Times New Roman are safe choices. Stick with the classics and it’s hard to botch this one too badly.

use fewer bullets

There reaches a point where bullet points become less of a visual aid and more of a visual examination.

Bullet points should support the speaker, not overwhelm his audience. The best slides have little or no text at all, in fact. As a presenter, it’s our job to talk through complex issues, but that doesn’t mean that we need to highlight every talking point.

Instead, think about how you can break up large lists into three or four bullet points. Carefully consider whether you need to use more bullet points, or if you can combine multiple topics into a single point instead. And if you can’t, remember that there’s no one limiting the number of slides you can have in a presentation. It’s always possible to break a list of 12 points down into three pages of four points each.

avoid transitions

Animation, when used correctly, is a good idea. It breaks up slow-moving parts of a presentation and adds action to elements that require it. But it should be used judiciously.

Adding a transition that wipes left to right between every slide or that animates each bullet point in a list, for example, starts to grow taxing on those forced to endure the presentation. Viewers get bored quickly, and animations that are meant to highlight specific elements quickly become taxing.

That’s not to say that you can’t use animations and transitions, just that you need to pick your spots. Aim for no more than a handful of these transitions for each presentation. And use them in spots where they’ll add to the demonstration, not detract from it.

use visuals

Sometimes images tell a better story than text can. And as a presenter, your goal is to describe points in detail without making users do a lot of reading. In these cases, a well-designed visual, like a chart, might better convey the information you’re trying to share.

The right image adds visual appeal and serves to break up longer, text-heavy sections of the presentation—but only if you’re using the right images. A single high-quality image can make all the difference between a success and a dud when you’re driving a specific point home.

When considering text, don’t think solely in terms of bullet points and paragraphs. Tables, for example, are often unnecessary. Ask yourself whether you could present the same data in a bar or line chart instead.

find a color palette

Color is interesting. It evokes certain feelings and adds visual appeal to your presentation as a whole. Studies show that color also improves interest, comprehension, and retention. It should be a careful consideration, not an afterthought.

You don’t have to be a graphic designer to use color well in a presentation. What I do is look for palettes I like, and then find ways to use them in the presentation. There are a number of tools for this, like Adobe Color , Coolors , and ColorHunt , just to name a few. After finding a palette you enjoy, consider how it works with the presentation you’re about to give. Pastels, for example, evoke feelings of freedom and light, so they probably aren’t the best choice when you’re presenting quarterly earnings that missed the mark.

It’s also worth mentioning that you don’t need to use every color in the palette. Often, you can get by with just two or three, though you should really think through how they all work together and how readable they’ll be when layered. A simple rule of thumb here is that contrast is your friend. Dark colors work well on light backgrounds, and light colors work best on dark backgrounds.

change views

Spend some time in the Slide Sorter before you finish your presentation. By clicking the four squares at the bottom left of the presentation, you can take a look at multiple slides at once and consider how each works together. Alternatively, you can click “View” on the ribbon and select “Slide Sorter.”

Are you presenting too much text at once? Move an image in. Could a series of slides benefit from a chart or summary before you move on to another point?

It’s here that we have the opportunity to view the presentation from beyond the single-slide viewpoint and think in terms of how each slide fits, or if it fits at all. From this view, you can rearrange slides, add additional ones, or delete them entirely if you find that they don’t advance the presentation.

The difference between a good presentation and a bad one is really all about preparation and execution. Those that respect the process and plan carefully—not only the presentation as a whole, but each slide within it—are the ones who will succeed.

This brings me to my last (half) point: When in doubt, just buy a template and use it. You can find these all over the web, though Creative Market and GraphicRiver are probably the two most popular marketplaces for this kind of thing. Not all of us are blessed with the skills needed to design and deliver an effective presentation. And while a pre-made PowerPoint template isn’t going to make you a better presenter, it will ease the anxiety of creating a visually appealing slide deck.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

How to Make a Beautiful and Efficient PPT

Last Updated: November 1, 2020

wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 11 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has been viewed 52,743 times. Learn more...

The process of making PowerPoint should be easy and precise. The following guide should help you find the most efficient way to make PPTs.

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Art of Presentations

7 EASY tips that ALWAYS make your PPT presentation attractive (even for beginners)

By: Author Shrot Katewa

7 EASY tips that ALWAYS make your PPT presentation attractive (even for beginners)

Designing a presentation can take a lot of effort, especially if you are a beginner. All the options that software like PowerPoint presents can be overwhelming. Add to that the design skills needed to create a presentation. Not everyone is blessed with the aptitude and the skills to design. Despite this, anyone (including a beginner) can create attractive presentations almost every single time!

We strongly believe that anyone can create a beautiful presentation; even if you are a beginner. In today’s article, we share our mantra for creating absolutely beautiful and attractive presentations almost every single time!

You don’t need to know all the advanced features of PowerPoint. Just keep in mind the steps that we have mentioned below, and you will have a much better-looking presentation than you imagined it to be.

Tip 1 – Create an awesome Title Slide for an awesome first impression

Create an AWESOME title slide for your presentation

We extensively covered a few methods using which you can easily create an awesome title slide for you PPT (link – https://owlscape.in/how-to-easily-make-an-awesome-first-slide-in-powerpoint )

A title slide is the first slide of your presentation. It mostly contains the title of your presentation and also showcases the topic on which your presentation is based. The title slide is also often the slide that is displayed even before the start of your presentation. Thus, it is important to have an awesome title slide as it can create a good first impression which can lead a subtle positive bias in the mindset of your audience. This can set the tone for the rest of your presentation.

However, creating a title slide can be challenging for some. This can be difficult especially if you are at a beginner level. In one of our previous post, we extensively covered a few methods using which you can easily create an awesome title slide for your PPT (link – https://owlscape.in/how-to-easily-make-an-awesome-first-slide-in-powerpoint )

Tip 2 – When using color, stick to the basics

If you think that simply adding text on a blank PowerPoint file means that you haven’t chosen a color scheme, then you can not be any more wrong! By simply adding text that is black on a default white background of a PPT file in itself creates a contrast and thereby a black and white color scheme! Obviously, that is not enough as that is the most basic color form which helps us read the content.

Colors are an important part of our life. Same is the case with a presentation. Every presentation needs to have colors on it. Using colors on a presentation can bring life to an otherwise lifeless looking presentation. Colors can help differentiate an important piece of information in an overcrowded content mix.

Using colors appropriately

Consider the above image. Do you notice the colors used for the slide? Also, do you notice any issue with the slide? That’s correct! Grey and white text is difficult to read on a similar background in the above image.

Adding colors to your slides can often grab your audiences’ attention. However, this holds true only if the colors are used appropriately! Not knowing or not using the right color choice can equally easily distract or thwart your audiences’ attention. It may also make your presentation a bit distasteful. Not to mention the difficulty that can be caused in reading the text.

Choosing a color scheme can depend on a lot of factors. If you don’t have experience in design, choosing a color scheme can be a daunting task! There are primary colors, secondary colors, tertiary colors. Then there is a hue, tint, tone, shade and other similar terminologies to deal with. Add to that the color combinations such as complementary, split complementary, triads, tetrads etc.. This can all be very confusing!

As a beginner, the easiest way to choose a color combination is to go for a monochromatic color scheme. You CAN NOT go wrong with a monochromatic color scheme.

So what is a monochromatic color scheme? A monochromatic color scheme is a set of colors which are essentially shades of a single color (technically, they can be shades, tints or tones which give multiple variations of a single color).

How to choose monochromatic color scheme in PowerPoint

So how does one use a monochromatic color scheme in PowerPoint? Well, it’s pretty simple! When you choose the color of a particular element on the slide through the “Shape Fill” option, simply choose colors from a single set. For example – in the above image, you may want to select a color of your choice such as blue, and then use variations of just blue throughout your presentation. However, be sure to maintain contrast between the text and the background color. This means, if the background is dark blue, be sure to make the color of the text as white or light shade of blue and vice-versa.

Remember, choosing a color scheme is important, however, maintaining consistency throughout can set your presentation apart and make it look professional. For instance, if you choose a color scheme for the heading of a slide, be sure to stick with it throughout the presentation.

Tip 3 – Introduce Contrast

So now that you have chosen a color scheme, it is important to use the color scheme to create a visual appeal. Using the same colors on every single slide with the same white background can also sometimes create monotony. This is especially true if we are using a monochromatic color scheme. One such way to combat this is to introduce contrast.

Introduce contrast by reversing font color on a slide

In the previous point, we touched upon the importance of maintaining contrast between the text and the background. This not only makes the slide visually appealing, but also makes the text easy to read. Let’s look at an example –

Introduce contrast with fonts on a slide in PPT

In the above slide design, the designer has very judiciously created contrast on the slide. Use of white fonts on a darker background makes the text stand out. Likewise, using the dark colored font on a white background creates a great balance and an interesting contrast. Introducing such contrast can enhance the visual appeal of the slides.

Also note the consistency in the color of the icons. While having white colored icons on a blue background wouldn’t be wrong, ensuring that the icons look consistent makes the presentation design very professional.

There are multiple ways to create a contrast on a single slide. Using 2 or 3 variations of the same color for different elements can be another method. However, the aforementioned method is the simplest and easiest to follow for beginners while creating a stunning visual appeal.

Introduce contrast using a contrasting slide

Another method of introducing contrast in your presentation is to use a contrasting slide. While, introducing contrast on a slide by reversing font color is important. Even so, having the same background throughout the presentation can make the PPT monotonous. In such a scenario, we can have a complete slide with a contrasting color to that of the other slides in the presentation. Let’s look at an example –

Using contrasting slide on PPT

The above slide added in an array of slides with white background can help break the monotony and break the contrast on our presentation. However, choosing the right slide for such a contrast is important. A general rule of thumb could be to pick the slide with just a few words or a single sentence. Such a contrast can also be introduced if we intend to have a quotation in our presentation.

One important point to note here would be to ensure that we use the primary dark color that we chose while selecting our monochromatic color scheme.

Tip 4 – Choose these fonts

One of the most important aspects of your PPT is the content of your presentation. The content that you would like to communicate can be presented using one of thousands of font choices! (Yes, you read it right! There are literally thousands of fonts out there!). So, how do you choose a font?

A simple rule of thumb is to pick fonts that are clear and legible; fonts that won’t tire the eyes of the reader even with extended looks at your slides. This is especially important when we can’t avoid a few content heavy slides.

Font Styles –

There are various font styles. However, the two most common font styles that we should most definitely consider are Serif and Sans Serif.

Serif fonts

Serif fonts have little strokes called “serif” attached at the end of each letter. Serif fonts give a more traditional feel. They are classy, literary and high-end. Serif fonts have been used in books and literature for decades. They are highly legible and our eyes are accustomed to it. These fonts are a great choice if you intend to have too much of text on the slides (note – we generally do not recommend having too much of content on the slides)

Sans Serif fonts don’t carry the strokes at the end of each letter. “Sans” has been derived from the French word “Sanz” which literally means “without”. Thus, the name itself means without Serif. These font types are more modern, and give a clean and a sleek look to your slide designs.

So, which font to choose?

If you wish to go with Serif font type , we recommend Times New Roman . If you think your preference is to go with Sans Serif fonts , we would recommend choosing Calibri or Arial . However, there is no right or wrong. At OwlScape, we do not prefer having too much text on the slides which give our presentations a much more modern feel. Therefore, our default font preference ends up being a Sans Serif font.

A common school of thought is to consider these fonts very boring. However, the reason we not just recommend these to others but in fact also use these fonts in our own presentations is because these fonts work. Times New Roman is a serious and a reliable font, and Arial is a professional font. You simply can’t go wrong with these. They are not boring. Rather, they are safe.

However, if you wish to go beyond these fonts, my next best recommendations would be to use Merriweather (Serif), Roboto (Sans Serif) , Montserrat (Sans Serif) or Source Sans Pro (Sans Serif). Each font has its own characteristic, pros and cons. Use of fonts is an art in itself. Thus, for beginners, we always recommend using Times New Roman, Calibri or Arial.

Keep these things in mind while choosing the fonts

It is important to remember a few things while working with the content on your presentation. They are as follows –

Tip 5 – Use images in your presentation

Almost everyone will tell you that using images for your presentation is important. Heck, I’m sure you would have seen at least one of those many TEDx presentations that only have pictures on their PPT.

So why is that? Why is using images in your PPT presentation important? Using images in your presentation is important because it enhances the look and feel of your presentation. Images also increase the retention capability of your audience as our human mind can better retain content when it is related with an image. Moreover, using images judiciously helps break the monotony of the presentation. Sometimes, use of images in your presentation also help to explain the concept better.

Images can make a good presentation great. The importance of using images can not be stressed more. But, when should you be using the images on a slide? Should you use an image on every single slide? While some events like the TEDx format may demand that, but obviously, using images on every single slide may not be the right way to go about making a presentation.

When to use images?

You don’t need an image on every single slide. But there are a few areas where you may want to consider using an image. Let’s look at a few of these –

1. Title slide –

Cover slide design example - 1

In general, title slides don’t have a lot of text. In such a scenario, simply having plain text in an otherwise blank slide can make it boring. This makes it a perfect slide to have an image on.

2. Product slide –

Image used for product slide in PPT

When talking about your product or a feature of your product, it can make a significant impact when your audience sees the product that you are talking about. Again, a great slide to use images on.

3. Team slide –

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

There are two ways you could use an image on this slide. If you are introducing an individual member of your team, then having small profile pictures of your team members can be a good idea. Alternatively, you could also use a group photo on your presentation for a team slide.

4. Events & exhibitions –

If you want to talk about the events that your company did, then one of the best ways to do that is to showcase a couple of photos from each event.

5. Office/ site locations –

Some organisations have fantastic offices. If you are an employee of one such organisation and want to talk about features of your office or manufacturing site that offer great benefits for the employees, use pictures!

6. Clients/Partners –

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

When people talk about using images on their PPT, they often forget that using logos of companies that they have worked with also constitute as images. This can be a great way of using images to enhance visuals of your presentation as opposed to just writing a list of client names.

7. Explaining a concept –

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

(Image source ) Drag the divider to the left or the right to see the complete image

Sometimes, concepts are better explained visually. Simply having a powerful image can easily and quickly convey the concept to your audience.

The above list is not exhaustive. It is only indicative in nature. There are several other ways and slides on which you can use images. Again, there is no right or wrong, and it is not necessary that you use images for each one of the points mentioned above.

How to find images for your presentation?

There are multiple ways to find an image for your presentation. Here are the top 3 methods that I recommend –

Finding the perfect image for your presentation can be time consuming. In one of our earlier posts, we shared detailed insights on where you can find images for your presentation. Be sure to read more on this topic from this link – https://owlscape.in/can-i-use-google-images-for-my-presentation/

Do’s and don’ts when using images for your PPT

Now that we’ve understood why to use images and which slides to use the images in our presentation, it is important for us to remember a few things when we work with images. Let’s have a look at these points –

Do’s –

Don’ts –

Tip 6 – Replace bullets points in your PPT with these

This is a cool tip! I assure you, just by following THIS ONE TIP, your presentation design will  take a jump ahead of a vast majority of the presentations out there. Trust me, this will set you apart.

The problem is that over 65% of the world’s population falls in the age group of 15 – 64 years ( source ). You might be wondering what’s that got to do with bullet points? The thing is that about 90% of this population is responsible for creating presentations, and most of them learned making presentations about 5-10 years ago. This is the period when making bullet points was considered the best way to present the content. So, while the software itself has evolved during this course of time, the skills to present the content hasn’t. While, this is a problem, the cool thing is that just by overcoming this one little challenge, you are ahead of at least a good 50-55% of the presentations that are created every single day!

So what can you do instead of using bullet points? There are broadly 3 ways in which you could get rid of your bullet points. Let’s have a look at them –

Option 1 – Use PowerPoint’s built-in SmartArt function

SmartArt function as bullet point alternative for PPT

This is by far the easiest way to replace your bullet points. Microsoft PowerPoint created the SmartArt function with this particular objective in mind. All you need to do is open a blank slide, click on “Insert” tab, then click “SmartArt”, and choose the type of SmartArt that you would like to insert depending on the type of content you have on your slide.

There are a ton of varieties of SmartArt that you would be able pick and choose. You will almost always find an option for the type of content you are having on the slide.

SmartArt is easy and fast. However, while this is great if you are starting out in the world of presentation design, we do not use SmartArt in the designs that we create for our clients at OwlScape. If you have a bit of time at hand, and have a fair idea of working with shapes on PowerPoint, we would strongly recommend using the following methods.

Option 2 – Use Icons as an alternative to bullet points

Icons as bullet point alternatives

Icons can easily serve as an alternative to bullet points on PowerPoint. Using icons can be a great way to make your presentation slides visually appealing. The objective of using icons on a PowerPoint slide is really to communicate the point quickly and visually. Thus, it is important to use an icon which is relatable to content.

If you have multiple bullet points, simply identify the key message from each bullet point. Then, identify and search for an icon applicable for that key message. Next, find a simple way to represent it on a slide. The easiest way to do this is to insert a shape, could be rectangle, square, curved square or a circle, and put the icon over the shape. Make sure that the icon is not the same color as that of the shape. I usually recommend using white color icons and changing the color of the shape.

You obviously don’t have to create the icon. You can easily find it in a few quick steps. Simply go to the “Insert” tab, click on “Icons”, and search for the icon you are looking for from the bar that opens up on the right side of the screen.

Option 3 – Use Infographics as an alternative to bullet points

Use infographic as bullet point alternative in PPT

A slightly more advanced method is to use infographics to replace bullet points from your content. Just like icons, infographics add a significant visual appeal to your presentation design. If you have a decent understanding of how to work with shapes, you can easily create infographics for your PPT presentation as well.

In case you are struggling to create your own infographics, you can also buy templates online for a few dollars. There are several websites that can help you find paid infographics.

Tip 7 – Follow the rule of thirds for slide design

This is another great tip that is often missed by most people who create a PowerPoint presentation. The rule of thirds is a concept which has been derived from Photography. Thus, it is obvious that most presentations tend to lack this basic design principle.

Consider the below images –

Grid layout before

( Image source ) Drag the divider to the left or the right to see the complete image

Which one looks better? Most of us would find that the content laid out in the image on the left is better of the two. Why? The answer is simple. It is because the design on the slide follows the rule of thirds.

So what is the rule of thirds in PowerPoint? The rule of thirds is a design principle where content is designed and laid out in a way that it follows any combination of a 3 by 3 grid system. Using the rule of thirds in slide design ensures balance to the design of the slide.

3 by 3 grid layout in PowerPoint

To follow the rule of thirds in PowerPoint slide designs, you need to work with guides. Simply open a blank slide, and right click anywhere on the white section of the slide, click on “Grid and Guides”, by clicking the guides option, it will bring up two thin dotted grey lines on your slide. By adding guides, you can create a 3 by 3 grid system.

To help our users understand this important concept, we intend to write a detailed article on how to work with grids and guides on PowerPoint, and we will update the link in this section soon. Be sure to come back to this article and check this section out.

Now that we’ve seen how the 3 by 3 grid looks, let’s go back to the image on the left.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Notice how the image has taken the top ⅔ rd of the slide horizontally. Also note the manner in which the 3 points are laid out in the three grids horizontally. Just by arranging the various elements in the grid system gives a well balanced design to the slide.

We highly recommend learning the grid system using the guides and following the rule of third even if you are a beginner. This will vastly improve your slide designs. The best part is – working with guides is very easy to learn and it only takes a few minutes.

I hope the aforementioned tips will greatly improve the designs of your PowerPoint slides, and help you impress your managers, colleagues and audience. Follow these design tips and you will almost always be able to create an effective presentation.

Our goal on this blog is to create content that helps YOU create fantastic presentations; especially if you have never been a designer. We’ve started our blog with non-designers in mind, and we have got some amazing content on our site to help you design better.

If you have any topics in mind that you would want us to write about, be sure to drop us a comment below. In case you need us to work with you and improve the design of your presentation, write to us on [email protected] . Our team will be happy to help you with your requirements.

Lastly, your contribution can make this world a better place with better presentations. All you have to do is simply share this blog in your network and help other fellow non-designers with their designs!

Hugh Culver


Author, speaker, coach, 10 easy ways to make any powerpoint presentation awesome.

Make your PowerPoint Presentation awesome

Updated to Speaking on May 3, 2023.

This post was updated in 2023.

It was 20 minutes before lunch, my client was frantically looking at the clock, and the audience was squirming. We had suffered through endless forgettable PowerPoint slides and were all hoping for a merciful end. That’s when the presenter announced, “I see I’m running out of time, so I’ll just hurry through my last 30 slides.”

We’ve all suffered through slide shows with long lists of unreadable bullets, unnecessary YouTube clips, and overuse of graphics. Instead of holding our attention and making their point even stronger, each slide distracts the audience with more content they don’t need. Bad slides are agnostic. You can use PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi, Google Slides, or hold up a piece of paper – it’s all a distraction if you don’t do it well.

Done well, a thoughtfully prepared slide deck can be the perfect slide dish for your full meal presentation. Done poorly and your audience will feel like they made one too many trips to the buffet table. This post will help you do it well.

For the first years of my speaking career, I presented with 35mm slides. You know, the photographs framed by cardboard that got jammed in the projector? That was me – hauling out the projector, clicking in the carousel, and praying that tonight it would all work. I soon learned that the more slides I showed the less the audience listened to me. So I cut back on the slides. I also noticed that when I switched to a black screen (see #9) the audience turned all their attention to me. So I practiced fading to black whenever I told a story or had an important point to make.

How I started

When I switched to PowerPoint I suddenly had a candy shop full of treats to sweeten my presentations with. And I started making all the same mistakes again: too many slides, too much content on each slide, and too distracting. After every presentation I always do a quick debrief – what worked, what needs to change? And slowly I developed a checklist for slide presentations.

I have shared with checklist with hundreds of speakers to help put the spotlight on them. Some were designing a new speech, some were preparing for a webinar and others needed slides to back up a video presentation. In every case, this checklist made their presentation better. They sold more products, got more referrals, and, in most cases, spent a lot less time working on their slide deck.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

If you’ve ever struggled to create interesting slides or worry your slides are too wordy or you have too many of them, this will help.

Here are my 10 easy ways to make any PowerPoint presentation awesome.

1. Build your slides last

This might be the most important rule on the list. Don’t build your slide deck until you build your presentation.

You could be tempted to start monkeying with slides early in your speech writing process – after all, it’s a fun way to procrastinate from all that hard thinking – don’t. Building your slide deck before you build your presentation is like building a road before you know where it’s going.

Your slides are there to ADD to a well-designed speech, not to replace it.

2. Don’t try to replace you

People come to hear you. If you are launching your service on a webinar, they want to know how this solution has helped you and whether is it right for them. If you are delivering a keynote speech or workshop, they want a glimpse into your solutions that can help move them forward in their work or in life.

Fancy transitions, superfluous video clips, and endless bullet points will get your audience’s attention, but take their attention off of you. Every time you hit the clicker the audience leaves you and goes to the screen.

Your goal for every presentation is to deliver the goods, not the slides.

3. Use a consistent theme

We are easily distracted and confused. That’s why brands always anchor advertising on their unique colors, fonts, slogan, or a jingle. They know that consistency in their brand theme builds recognition and puts more attention on the message. You should do that with your slides.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Start with a simple, white background and san serif fonts.

A consistent, simple theme helps your audience focus on the content of each slide. Watch TED talks that have gone viral to see how simple a slide theme can be, like the ones by Dan Pink The puzzle of motivation (30M views), and Shawn Achor The happy secret to better work (25M views).

4. More images, less text

Want to quickly reenergize a tired slide deck? Make your images larger ( in this post I share where to get free images ) and reduce the text size. Remember, the theme in this post is that you are the presentation, not your slides.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Your brain can process images 60,000 times faster than text. When you use images (and less text) you allow your audience to process the image without distracting them away from your powerful story, or making a critical point. Like subtle mood music in the background of a dramatic movie scene, images can augment and enhance what you are saying without stealing the show.

5. One story per slide

When I started using PowerPoint I would have 60 to 80 slides for a 60-minute speech. It was a lot of work to prepare each deck and when I was deep into the speech I would sometimes forget where I was and have to jump forward a couple of slides.

Then it became 30-35 slides and I could breathe easier, knowing that fewer clicks meant less to worry about. As my confidence grew it became 10-12 slides and each slide became a key part of storytelling or point-making—they had to earn their place.

I might use a slide as a backdrop to a story or for a short list that supports a lesson I’m delivering. Either way, it’s always on ‘story’ per slide. If I don’t need a slide, I fade to black (#9).

But, I always stick to one story per slide.

6. Reveal one bullet at a time

This is an easy one – reveal one bullet at a time. The function of bullets is to reinforce (not replace) what you are delivering. That’s why they need to be short (see the 2/4/8 rule, below). A good bullet point is complete on it’s own, but much better when combined with a live presentation of it. Here’s an example from a list of (very wordy) time management strategies:

A better list – like one you might use on a PowerPoint slide – would be:

To reveal one bullet at a time in PowerPoint, right-click on your text box, select Custom Animation > Add Entrance Effect and then choose the effect you want. In Keynote, click Animate > Build in and choose the effect you want.

7. Leave the fireworks to Disney

It’s great that you know how to turn text into flames and make images spin with the click of your mouse – but leave those fireworks to Disney. Your job is to make your content the star of the show. Every time you haul the audience’s attention away to some animation you lose a truckload of opportunity to help them.

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Your slides can still be amazing and helpful, but that should always be secondary to your primary purpose of helping people. Simple transitions, clean, san serif fonts, and large, attractive graphics trump PowerPoint tricks, every time.

8. The 2/4/8 rule

When I am advising other speakers I often don’t know their topic—certainly not as well as they do. So I rely on certain rules I have developed over many years. For slide decks, I use my 2/4/8 rule. Here’s how it goes…

Just like any recipe, you can mess with the ingredient a bit. If your content is more technical, you might need more slides. Sometimes I need 5 or 6 bullets. I use the 2/4/8 rule to remind me that slides are there to support what I have to say, not replace me.

9. Fade to black

The last time I was shopping for a car, I noticed the salesperson had a clever technique. While he asked how I liked the car and if I had any questions, he kept his sales offer face-down on the table. Because there were no other distractions, he had my full attention. And when it was time to reveal his offer, it was much more dramatic (so was the price!) Use the same technique with your slides.

When you fade to black you regain your audience’s attention. For example, after I present a solution, I’ll fade to black while I expound on how to apply that solution in my audience’s work/life. When I’m finished, I turn black off and go to the next point. Or if I’m halfway through a story I’ll fade to back before the punchline so I know I have everyone’s attention.

It’s no different than a close-up scene in a movie—the director wants you to focus only on the speaker. Note that if you are shopping for a slide remote, be sure that yours has the black screen feature.

10. When in doubt, delete

This might be the most advice I can leave you with. When in doubt, delete it.

There is a weird attraction to more. Authors add more pages thinking it makes the book more valuable. Sales people who talk too much miss the opportunity to ask for the sale. And presenters add more slides thinking it will make them look better. Wrong.

When you are doing the final edits on your slide deck, the ultimate question you should be asking about each slide is, “Will it make my speech better?” If not, dump it.

Remember, nobody will miss what isn’t there. Also fewer slides allows you more time for side stories, spontaneous thoughts or even time for Q&A.

Remember this…

I’ve said it numerous times in this post, but it’s worth repeating. You are the show, not your slides. More slides means more time your audience is not paying attention to you. Fewer (and better) slides means you have more time to build rapport, share memorable stories, explain your solutions and motivate your audience to action. You are there for a reason. Now go and deliver.

One last thing. Spend the $80 and pack a remote (with spare batteries.) Nothing’s worse than watching a speaker repeatedly lean over, hunt for the right key, and then peck away to advance the slides.

If you enjoyed this article, here is more about presentation skills:

How the experts create world-class PowerPoint Slides (and you can too) PowerPoint Primer – the only 3 slides you’ll ever need How to add video to PowerPoint and Keynote like a pro

Slide by  Nathan Anderson  on  Unsplash

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how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

Basic tasks for creating a PowerPoint presentation

PowerPoint presentations work like slide shows. To convey a message or a story, you break it down into slides. Think of each slide as a blank canvas for the pictures and words that help you tell your story.

Choose a theme

When you open PowerPoint, you’ll see some built-in themes and templates. A theme is a slide design that contains matching colors, fonts, and special effects like shadows, reflections, and more.

On the File tab of the Ribbon, select New , and then choose a theme.

PowerPoint shows you a preview of the theme, with four color variations to choose from on the right side.

Click Create , or pick a color variation and then click Create .

Shows the Create New presentation from Theme dialog in PowerPoint

Read more: Use or create themes in PowerPoint

Insert a new slide

On the Home tab, click the bottom half of  New Slide , and pick a slide layout.

Shows New Slide button on Home tab of the ribbon in PowerPoint

Read more: Add, rearrange, and delete slides .

Save your presentation

On the File tab, choose Save .

Pick or browse to a folder.

In the File name box, type a name for your presentation, and then choose Save .

Note:  If you frequently save files to a certain folder, you can ‘pin’ the path so that it is always available (as shown below).

Save your PowerPoint presentation

Tip:  Save your work as you go. Press Ctrl+S often or save the file to OneDrive and let AutoSave take care of it for you. 

Read more: Save your presentation file

Select a text placeholder, and begin typing.

Shows adding text to a text field in PowerPoint

Format your text

Select the text.

Under Drawing Tools , choose Format .

Shows the Drawing Tools tab on the ribbon in PowerPoint

Do one of the following:

To change the color of your text, choose Text Fill , and then choose a color.

To change the outline color of your text, choose Text Outline , and then choose a color.

To apply a shadow, reflection, glow, bevel, 3-D rotation, a transform, choose Text Effects , and then choose the effect you want.

Change the fonts

Change the color of text on a slide

Add bullets or numbers to text

Format text as superscript or subscript

Add pictures

On the Insert tab, do one of the following:

To insert a picture that is saved on your local drive or an internal server, choose Pictures , browse for the picture, and then choose Insert .

To insert a picture from the web, choose Online Pictures , and use the search box to find a picture.

Insert Pictures dialog in PowerPoint

Choose a picture, and then click Insert .

You can add shapes to illustrate your slide. 

On the Insert tab, select Shapes , and then select a shape from the menu that appears.

In the slide area, click and drag to draw the shape.

Select the Format or Shape Format tab on the ribbon. Open the Shape Styles gallery to quickly add a color and style (including shading) to the selected shape.

Shape Styles group

Add speaker notes

Slides are best when you don’t cram in too much information. You can put helpful facts and notes in the speaker notes, and refer to them as you present.

notes button in PowerPoint

Click inside the Notes pane below the slide, and begin typing your notes.

Shows the speaker Notes pane in PowerPoint

Add speaker notes to your slides

Print slides with or without speaker notes

Give your presentation

On the Slide Show tab, do one of the following:

To start the presentation at the first slide, in the Start Slide Show group, click From Beginning .

Shows the Slide Show tab on the ribbon in PowerPoint

If you’re not at the first slide and want to start from where you are, click From Current Slide .

If you need to present to people who are not where you are, click Present Online to set up a presentation on the web, and then choose one of the following options:

Broadcast your PowerPoint presentation online to a remote audience

View your speaker notes as you deliver your slide show.

Get out of Slide Show view

To get out of Slide Show view at any time, on the keyboard, press Esc .

Important:  Office 2010 is no longer supported . Upgrade to Microsoft 365 to work anywhere from any device and continue to receive support. Upgrade now

When you start a new presentation PowerPoint, you’ll have the opportunity to choose a theme or template. A theme is a slide design that contains matching colors, fonts, and special effects like shadows, reflections, and more.

On the File tab, select New , and then, under Available Templates and Themes , choose Themes .

As you click each theme, PowerPoint shows you a preview on the right side.

When you find the one you want, click Create .

Shows a preview of a theme

Tip:  Save your work as you go. Press Ctrl+S often.

On the Insert tab, choose Picture .

Browse for the picture you want, and then choose Insert .

Select the Drawing Tools Format tab on the ribbon. Open the Shape Styles gallery to quickly add a color and style (including shading) to the selected shape.

Shape Styles group

Slides are best when you don’t cram in too much information. You can put helpful facts and notes in the speaker notes, and refer to them as you present. In Normal view, the Notes pane is located just below the slide view window.

On the View tab, in the Presentation Views group, click Normal .

Shows the Notes pane below the slide window

If you need to present to people who are not where you are, click Broadcast Slide Show to set up a presentation on the web. To learn more, see Broadcast your PowerPoint presentation to a remote audience .

Tips for creating an effective presentation

Consider the following tips to keep your audience interested.

Minimize the number of slides

To maintain a clear message and to keep your audience attentive and interested, keep the number of slides in your presentation to a minimum.

Choose an audience-friendly font size

The audience must be able to read your slides from a distance. Generally speaking, a font size smaller than 30 might be too difficult for the audience to see.

Keep your slide text simple

You want your audience to listen to you present your information, instead of reading the screen. Use bullets or short sentences, and try to keep each item to one line.

Some projectors crop slides at the edges, so that long sentences might be cropped.

Use visuals to help express your message

Pictures, charts, graphs, and SmartArt graphics provide visual cues for your audience to remember. Add meaningful art to complement the text and messaging on your slides.

As with text, however, avoid including too many visual aids on your slide.

Make labels for charts and graphs understandable

Use only enough text to make label elements in a chart or graph comprehensible.

Apply subtle, consistent slide backgrounds

Choose an appealing, consistent template or theme that is not too eye-catching. You don't want the background or design to detract from your message.

However, you also want to provide a contrast between the background color and text color. The built-in themes in PowerPoint set the contrast between a light background with dark colored text or dark background with light colored text.

For more information about how to use themes, see Apply a theme to add color and style to your presentation .

Check the spelling and grammar

To earn and maintain the respect of your audience, always check the spelling and grammar in your presentation .

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Microsoft PowerPoint has dramatically changed the way in which academic and business presentations are made. This article outlines few tips on making more effective and attractive PowerPoint presentations.

Dr. Shahul Ameen, M.D. is a Psychiatrist based in Ranchi, India. He edits a portal with information on mental health and Psychiatry , and a directory of Indian websites on mental health .

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Top 10 Hacks On How To Make PowerPoint Presentation Attractive

Top 10 Hacks On How To Make PowerPoint Presentation Attractive

Per experts, the audience gets hooked and pays more attention to the visual content of your PowerPoint slides than drab-looking, text-heavy content. This article answers the well to know question – ‘how to make PowerPoint presentation attractive’ and offers an array of creative PowerPoint slides and google slide templates that will win you accolades. They will help you think beyond bullet points and unlock the unique visual story waiting to be released from your message.

PowerPoint presentations are essential in business communication, but creating a practical and visually appealing presentation can be challenging. However, here are some tips on how to make good PowerPoint presentation that will engage your audience and effectively convey your message.

Table of Contents

How To Make ppt More Attractive Using Visual Bullets?

To separate the content, use an optical element to create business PowerPoint slides with lines, shapes, and spacing. This trick comes in handy if you have a lot of content to be organized.

How To Make An PowerPoint Interesting Using Double-sided text?

With alternate key points on the left and right side of the page, this attractive PowerPoint presentation slide visually separates a lot of text on the presentation slide and is accessible to the target audience’s eye.

As you can see in the PowerPoint slide example above , each piece of text has plenty of white space to breathe. Having adequate white space is key to beautiful presentations.

How To Create Amazing PowerPoint Presentations Using The Chunking Method?

You can also create professional PowerPoint slides based on the chunking method. Chunking refers to organizing your content in groups and showing those chunks horizontally or vertically, depending on how much content you have. To create useful visual chunks, you should group the related elements on the presentation background and contrast the unrelated elements. When the grouping and the contrast are clear, the target audience finds it easy to understand and process the information on your presentation slides.

Tip : Use PowerPoint shapes to separate the text and add numbers, headlines, or PowerPoint icons to each chunk of text depending on the type of content you have on your PowerPoint Slides .

Chunking works brilliantly to showcase how to make presentation more attractive with different ideas on the same PowerPoint slide, as our mind is wired to search for patterns to make sense of the information we find around us.

How To Make A Presentation Attractive Using Picturization?

Another way to build an attractive PowerPoint presentation is to represent your content by using photos and isometrics. Use images for PowerPoint presentations relevant to your content which aids in communicating your business story. 

Images also allow your target audience to immediately associate an idea with the text, increasing the comprehension of your content. Check out the below timeline PowerPoint slides that use pictures to explain each timeline stage clearly.

PowerPoint Slide to make engaging presentations

How To Make PowerPoint Interesting With Icons?

PowerPoint Icons have become another popular option for creating compelling and engaging PowerPoint slides. They occupy less space, visually separate the clutter, and are best for emphasizing certain content. Below are a few examples of PowerPoint Icons presentation slides .

An abundance of free PowerPoint icons libraries is available online to choose icons for your PowerPoint slides.

How To Make A Beautiful ppt With Backgrounding?

Background PowerPoint slides are a great way to set the context of the content; therefore, many professional PowerPoint templates are designed using an image as a background. Below are a few PowerPoint slide designs with a background image that liven up the entire presentation slide.

You can insert a gradient, semi-transparent layer between the text and the photo so that the reader will always be visible whichever image you use.

How To Make A Presentation Attractive Using 3D Designs In PowerPoint?

The chief aim of lining up your elements in 3D format is to create a clean and organized space. Structure and symmetry are naturally pleasing to the eye. Another great benefit of a 3D PowerPoint template is that you can easily integrate pictures, numbers, and text into beautiful PowerPoint Slides . 

You can also alternate the colors in the grid to make them visually appealing. Choose rotating colors wisely to avoid color riots on the PowerPoint slides .

How To Make A Good PowerPoint Presentation Using Central Figures?

Add one visual element that summarizes the main idea of the PowerPoint slide. You can divide the PowerPoint slide into title and text sections with a solid contrast. You may choose any image; however, we recommend using PowerPoint icons due to the simplicity of the illustration and its neat, transparent look.

As you can see in the above templates, we have used different PowerPoint shapes and icons to summarize the slide content neatly.

How To Make A PowerPoint Presentation Interesting With Graphics?

A PowerPoint graphic is another excellent tool for building a PowerPoint slide, especially if the content forms parts of a whole idea or works together cyclically.

This PowerPoint slide layout allows for plenty of active white space on PowerPoint Slides, which increases its consistency and readability.

If there are many parts of a whole and you want to talk about each component separately, you may want to animate all the details so that they appear one at a time and can help your target audience follow along as you talk about each part.

Please ensure consistency of alignment and size in your PowerPoint Slides if you insert PowerPoint images .

How To Make Attractive ppt Using Roadmapping?

Use of PowerPoint roadmap template or path layout to show direction and flow on your Powerpoint Slides.

Consider displaying things on a journey layout if you want to show content in sequential order.  A clear path or roadmap will visually help your target audience to form associations and inferences from direction and flow.

These are some of the ways to build effective PowerPoint slide designs. If all this sounds too much, simply check-out our page and purchase a pre-built professional PowerPoint template (like any slide examples in this article). It will save you tons of time, and your PowerPoint slides will look great. You will also get to know even more diverse PowerPoint backgrounds and formats that could be used to create engaging business presentations.

These PowerPoint templates are instantly downloadable, 100% editable, and easy to use. Using the SlideUpLift library, you can start with templates, make edits, and create presentations in minutes.

Happy Presenting!!

Now you don’t have to scour the web to find out the right templates. Download our PowerPoint Templates from within PowerPoint. See how ?

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17 PowerPoint Presentation Tips to Make More Creative Slideshows [+ Templates]

Jamie Cartwright

Updated: July 27, 2022

Published: March 18, 2022

Creating a great PowerPoint presentation is a skill that any professional can benefit from. The problem? It’s really easy to get it wrong. From poor color choices to confusing slides, a bad PowerPoint slideshow can distract from the fantastic content you’re sharing with stakeholders on your team.

powerpoint presentation

That’s why it’s so important to learn how to create a PowerPoint presentation from the ground up, starting with your slides. Even if you’re familiar with PowerPoint, a refresher will help you make a more attractive, professional slideshow. Let’s get started.

How to Make a PowerPoint Slide

I like to think of Microsoft PowerPoint as a test of basic professional skills. To create a passing presentation, I need to demonstrate design skills, technical literacy, and a sense of personal style.

If the presentation has a problem (like an unintended font, a broken link, or unreadable text), then I’ve probably failed the test. Even if my spoken presentation is well rehearsed, a bad visual experience can ruin it for the audience.

Expertise means nothing without a good PowerPoint presentation to back it up. For starters, grab your collection of free PowerPoint templates below.

10 Free PowerPoint Templates

Tell us a little about yourself below to gain access today..

No matter your topic, successful PowerPoints depend on three main factors: your command of PowerPoint's design tools, your attention to presentation processes, and your devotion to consistent style. Here are some simple tips to help you start mastering each of those factors, and don't forget to check out the additional resources at the bottom of this post.

How to Make a PowerPoint Presentation

A presentation is made up of multiple slides, and now that you know how to make one, you can delve deeper into PowerPoint's capabilities.

1. Open a blank presentation again or start from one you've already created.

If you've already created a presentation, double-click the icon to open the existing file. Otherwise, open Microsoft PowerPoint, click File in the top left corner, and click New Presentation . From there, you can follow the prompts to set up a new presentation.

2. Choose a theme or create your own.

Microsoft offers built-in themes and color variations to help you design your slides with a cohesive look. To choose from these pre-built themes, choose the File tab again, select New , choose one of the options, and click Create .

Otherwise, you can use PowerPoint elements, your design sense, and your brand's color palette to make your own "theme."

3. Create a variety of slides for different purposes.

You don't want to present the same exact slide, only with different content on it. This would bore your audience. Ensure that you create multiple variations, accommodating some of the common uses for slides. At minimum, you'll need:

4. Use the Duplicate Slides feature to save you time.

There's no reason to create these designs over and over again. Now that you have a few to draw from, you can simply duplicate them before inputting your content. Here's how to do that:

This will automatically add a copy of this slide to the presentation. From there, you can customize it for your needs.

5. Add transitions to your slides (optional).

Done well, transitions can add a little bit of movement and showmanship to your presentation. PowerPoint has several transitions built in for you to choose from.

To access them, select the Transitions tab from the top ribbon. From there, you can select a transition for it to preview on your screen. To customize it further, click Effect Options and play with the features to find something that suits your liking. To remove a transition, select Transitions and click None .

6. Add animations to your slides (optional).

Like transitions, animations can add movement, reveal information, and help you underscore the points you want to hit during your speech. To animate an element, follow these steps:

Some of the ways to customize animations include:

These describe how you want the effect to behave, so play around with them until you find an effect that suits your liking.

You'll also have the option to move animations around as you edit your slides by clicking on the Animation Pane button, then reordering the animations in the list that pops up.

7. Save your presentation.

Click File and Save , making sure to specify which folder or destination you want your PowerPoint to be stored. If you're using your slides for education or teaching, it could be beneficial to convert your presentation to an online course .

8. Run your presentation.

It's always good to do a trial run to ensure that your slides are set up properly and your animations fire the way you expect them to.

To present your PowerPoint, go to the Slide Show tab and click Play from Start. The slide will cover your whole screen, blocking out your desktop and PowerPoint software. This is so your audience (in this case, you for the trial run) is solely focused on the visual elements of your presentation.

9. Advance the slides.

When you're done with one slide and want to show the next in your sequence, click your mouse in presentation mode. This will advance the slide. 

PowerPoint Presentation Tips

PowerPoint Style

1. don’t let powerpoint decide how you use powerpoint..

Microsoft wanted to provide PowerPoint users with a lot of tools. But this does not mean you should use them all. Here are some key things to look out for:

2. Create custom slide sizes.

While you usually can get away with the default slide size for most presentations, you may need to adjust it for larger presentations on weirdly sized displays. If you need to do that, here's how.

Tip : You can avoid a headache with the last step if you resize your slides before you add any objects to them. Otherwise, the dimensions of your objects will become skewed.

3. Edit your slide template design.

Often, it's much easier to edit your PowerPoint template before you start — this way, you don't have to design each slide by hand. Here's how you do that.

4. Write text with your audience in mind.

A significant part of a PowerPoint's content is text. Great copy can make or break your presentation, so evaluating your written work from a few different angles could make you seem more persuasive. Thinking about how your text is received differentiates good presenters from the best.


Many people underestimate the influence of typeface, but choosing the right font is important — the perception of your font type could influence your audience's impression of you. The right font is an opportunity to convey consistent brand personality and professionalism.

Some fonts are seen as clean and professional, but this doesn't mean they're boring. A common mistake is thinking your font isn't "exciting" enough, which could lead you to choose a font that distracts from your overall message. We recommend sticking to simple serif and sans-serif fonts . Avoid script fonts because of potential readability issues.

powerpoint presentation: types of fonts

That said, you can still use fun and eccentric fonts — in moderation. Offsetting a fun font or large letters with something more professional can create an engaging presentation.

Above all, be sure you're consistent so your presentation looks the same throughout each slide. That way, your audience doesn't become distracted by too many disparate fonts. Check out this example from HubSpot’s company profile templates:

Interested in this presentation template? Download it for free here.

5. Make sure all of your objects are properly aligned.

Having properly aligned objects on your slide is the key to making it look polished and professional. You can manually try to line up your images ... but we all know how that typically works out. You're trying to make sure all of your objects hang out in the middle of your slide, but when you drag them there, it still doesn't look quite right. Get rid of your guessing game and let PowerPoint work its magic with this trick.

Here’s how to align multiple objects:

Here’s how to align objects to the slide:

PowerPoint Design

6. use "format object" to better control your objects' designs..

Format menus allow you to do fine adjustments that otherwise seem impossible. To do this, right-click on an object and select the Format Object option. Here, you can fine-tune shadows, adjust shape measurements, create reflections, and much more. The menu that will pop up looks like this:

powerpoint presentation: format object pane

Although the main options can be found on PowerPoint’s format toolbars, look for complete control in the format window menu. Other examples of options available include:

7. Take advantage of PowerPoint's shapes.

Many users don’t realize how flexible PowerPoint’s shape tools have become. In combination with the expanded format options released by Microsoft, the potential for good design with shapes is readily available. PowerPoint provides the user with a bunch of great shape options beyond the traditional rectangle, oval, and rounded rectangle patterns.

Today’s shapes include a highly functional Smart Shapes function, which enables you to create diagrams and flow charts in no time. These tools are especially valuable when you consider that PowerPoint is a visual medium. Paragraphing and bullet lists are boring — you can use shapes to help express your message more clearly.

8. Create custom shapes.

When you create a shape, right click and press Edit Points . By editing points, you can create custom shapes that fit your specific need. For instance, you can reshape arrows to fit the dimensions you like.

Another option is to combine two shapes together. To do so, select the two shapes you’d like to work with, then click Shape Format in the top ribbon. Tap Merge Shapes .

You’ll see a variety of options.

By using these tools rather than trying to edit points precisely, you can create accurately measured custom shapes.

9. Crop images into custom shapes.

Besides creating custom shapes in your presentation, you can also use PowerPoint to crop existing images into new shapes. Here's how you do that:

10. Present websites within PowerPoint.

Tradition says that if you want to show a website in a PowerPoint, you should just create a link to the page and prompt a browser to open. For PC users, there’s a better option.

Third party software that integrates fully into PowerPoint’s developer tab can be used to embed a website directly into your PowerPoint using a normal HTML iframe. One of the best tools is LiveWeb , a third-party software that you can install on your PowerPoint program.

By using LiveWeb, you don’t have to interrupt your PowerPoint, and your presentation will remain fluid and natural. Whether you embed a whole webpage or just a YouTube video, this can be a high-quality third party improvement. To install the add-on, simple head to the LiveWeb website and follow the instructions.

Unfortunately, Mac users don’t have a similar option. A good second choice is to take screenshots of the website, link in through a browser, or embed media (such as a YouTube video) by downloading it directly to your computer.

11. Try Using GIFs.

GIFs are looped animated images used to communicate a mood, idea, information, and much more. Users add GIFs to PowerPoints to be funny or quickly demo a process. It's easy to add GIFs to your slides. To do so, simply follow these steps:

PowerPoint Process

12. keep it simple..

PowerPoint is an excellent tool to support your presentation with visual information, graphics, and supplemental points. This means that your PowerPoint should not be your entire presentation. Your slides — no matter how creative and beautiful — shouldn't be the star of the show. Keep your text and images clear and concise, using them only to supplement your message and authority.

If your slides have dense and cluttered information, it will both distract your audience and make it much more likely that you will lose their attention. Nothing in your slides should be superfluous! Keep your presentation persuasive by keeping it clean. There are a few ways to do this:

13. Embed your font files.

One constant problem presenters have with PowerPoint is that fonts seem to change when presenters move from one computer to another. In reality, the fonts are not changing — the presentation computer just doesn’t have the same font files installed . If you’re using a PC and presenting on a PC, then there is a smooth workaround for this issue.

Here’s the trick: When you save your PowerPoint file (only on a PC), you should click File , then Options, then open up the Save tab. Then, select the Embed fonts in the file check box under Preserve fidelity when sharing this presentation . Now, your presentation will keep the font file and your fonts will not change when you move computers.

The macOS PowerPoint version has a similar function. To embed your fonts on a Mac, do the following:

14. Save your slides as a PDF file for backup purposes.

If you’re still scared of your presentation showing up differently when it’s time to present, you should create a PDF version just in case. This is a good option if you’ll be presenting on a different computer. If you also run into an issue where the presenting computer doesn’t have PowerPoint installed, you can also use the system viewer to open up the PDF. No laptop will ever give you trouble with this file type.

The only caveat is that your GIFs, animations, and transitions won’t transfer over. But since the PDF will only work as a backup, not as your primary copy, this should be okay.

To save your presentation as a PDF file, take the following steps:

You can also go to File , then Export , then select PDF from the file format menu.

15. Embed multimedia.

PowerPoint allows you to either link to video/audio files externally or to embed the media directly in your presentation. You should embed these files if you can, but if you use a Mac, you cannot actually embed the video (see note below). For PCs, two great reasons for embedding are:

Note: macOS users of PowerPoint should be extra careful about using multimedia files.

If you use PowerPoint for Mac, then you will always need to bring the video and/or audio file with you in the same folder as the PowerPoint presentation. It’s best to only insert video or audio files once the presentation and the containing folder have been saved on a portable drive in their permanent folder. Also, if the presentation will be played on a Windows computer, then Mac users need to make sure their multimedia files are in WMV format. This tip gets a bit complicated, so if you want to use PowerPoint effectively, consider using the same operating system for designing and presenting, no matter what.

16. Bring your own hardware.

Between operating systems, PowerPoint is still a bit jumpy. Even between differing PPT versions, things can change. One way to fix these problems is to make sure that you have the right hardware — so just bring along your own laptop when you're presenting.

If you’re super concerned about the different systems you might have to use, then upload your PowerPoint presentation into Google Slides as a backup option. Google Slides is a cloud-based presentation software that will show up the same way on all operating systems. The only thing you need is an internet connection and a browser.

To import your PowerPoint presentation into Google Slides, take the following steps:

powerpoint presentation: importing slides into google slides

When I tested this out, Google Slides imported everything perfectly, including a shape whose points I had manipulated. This is a good backup option to have if you’ll be presenting across different operating systems.

17. Use Presenter View.

In most presentation situations, there will be both a presenter’s screen and the main projected display for your presentation. PowerPoint has a great tool called Presenter View, which can be found in the Slide Show tab of PowerPoint. Included in the Presenter View is an area for notes, a timer/clock, and a presentation display.

powerpoint presentation: using presenter view

For many presenters, this tool can help unify their spoken presentation and their visual aid. You never want to make the PowerPoint seem like a stack of notes that you’re reading off of. Use the Presenter View option to help create a more natural presentation.

Pro Tip: At the start of the presentation, you should also hit CTRL + H to make the cursor disappear. Hitting the "A" key will bring it back if you need it!

Your Next Great PowerPoint Presentation Starts Here

With style, design, and presentation processes under your belt, you can do a lot more with PowerPoint than just presentations for your clients. PowerPoint and similar slide applications are flexible tools that should not be forgotten. With a great template, you can be on your way to creating presentations that wow your audience.

Editor's note: This post was originally published in September 2013 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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How to use PowerPoint to create a portfolio

march 30, 2023

how to make powerpoint presentation attractive

by Microsoft Create team

A portfolio is an opportunity to put your best foot forward. Whether you’re applying to a creative role, beginning a new chapter in your education, or are looking to showcase your talents, it is important to present your experiences in an eye-catching way that will attract notice. Microsoft PowerPoint is a robust tool that emphasizes the visual, so it makes for a fitting platform to showcase your finest work. Think of your portfolio like a visual resume, and with dozens of professionally designed PowerPoint templates to choose from and personalize, you can find the perfect way to present what you’ve done.

Tell your story

Every portfolio tells a story—whether it’s chronological and starting from your earliest work, or thematic and illustrating the myriad projects you may have worked on over the course of many years. Depending on the roles you’re applying for, you might need a different template to convey your career’s path.

For example, if you’re applying to an art school, you can show the trajectory of how you have grown as an artist and gained experience from your various roles. If you are creating an image-heavy portfolio, you can denote your experiences with filler slides, in order to separate the different eras in your history. When choosing images, it’s better to lean on larger-sized images, which you can then crop or resize within PowerPoint.

Example of a PowerPoint portfolio that incorporates large images.

Conversely, if you are applying for a technical role, you can outline the different roles you have held, and expand on your specific parts in detail. Here, your PowerPoint portfolio adheres closely to the format of a resume, where your portfolio can be broken up into education, experience, skills, training, and other common resume sections. Screenshots of your online work also make for tangible examples of your work that elevate an otherwise staid list of titles and links.

Present a visual narrative

PowerPoint templates make for an attractive, easily customizable starting point to build a portfolio. Different templates emphasize images over text or bullet points—one of the ways that PowerPoint portfolios are versatile enough to be tailored to your creativity. Because PowerPoint can hold plenty of slides, you won’t be limited by page lengths such as in a traditional resume.

Most people are visual learners, and a portfolio is a way for people to learn about you and your work. Therefore, the principles of good design come into play: where your audience will draw their visual attention, and what they see first, will matter when creating slides with biographical details or slides that prominently feature images.

Include a compelling biography

Starting with your title page, place your name in a large, eye-catching font. Then, add a profile picture—especially one that shows you in your best light. This will go alongside your biographical details, which can be at the front of a portfolio, to serve as an introduction, or near the end, if you want to introduce your work first and let it speak for itself.

Example of a biography page in a PowerPoint portfolio.

Here are key elements in writing a bio that is clear, concise, and easy to read by your audience:

The key to a successful portfolio is careful consideration of the details that comprise your personal and professional life. Staying organized can save you a lot of time or confusion when creating your portfolio. Lastly, a portfolio offers more room and opportunities to let your personality shine through, especially compared to a resume or job board posting. By starting with the right PowerPoint portfolio template , you can begin to put your passions on display and find your ideal audience.

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