Tips for Making Your Presentations More Visual

by Deryl Cason

This is it. The moment that we either have been excited about or dreading has arrived. The spotlight, whether literally or figuratively, is shining down on us. As we walk up to the stage, we try anxiously try to flick on our internal “Fight Mode” as our body inches closer and closer to “Flight Mode”. We look at the audience and we say…wait…we need to rewind. Before we can even get on the stage we need to develop a creative and captivating presentation. There are three components to follow when making a presentation more visual: Simplicity, Viewer Engagement and Sharing Power.

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When you are adding visuals to your presentation keep them light and don’t overthink it. We want the presentation to be appealing, but not distracting, pulling the viewer’s attention away from the desired point of focus – the speaker. One key to developing a charismatic presentation is to not overthink it. Abide by the “KISS Principle”—not the one created by the artist, Prince in 1986—but the one coined by the US Navy in the 1960’s. “KISS” stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid”; but in recent years has been rephrased to “Keep it Simple, Silly”.

Viewer Engagement

Don’t rely on just your PowerPoint as the only visual aide during your presentation. Utilize the living, breathing visuals that are there: the audience. Ask questions and take a census from those in attendance to get them involved. Intermittent surveying can help keep your audience attentive and infuse energy into the presentation. If you are performing a digital presentation for  viewing through an electronic device, add a video or an automated poll to boost the viewer experience.

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Sharing Power

The final component is making sure that your presentation has sharing power. Presentations should stand on their own with little to no need for interpretation. In today’s world where social media and digital communications is engrained within our lifestyles, you want your content to be worth sharing.

As you continue to create new, interactive and innovative presentations, you will create your own unique formula for success. Learn from others for inspiration and review sites like Slide Share or Canva for fresh ideas and trends.