Creating a presentation for the first time may seem like a formidable task. Maybe you are creating a presentation for the first time that you are going to pitch to an important audience or within a business setting?
You may have previously created plenty of presentations but only shown them to classmates or colleagues, not to potential clients or employers. So you feel like a beginner and don’t know where to start.
Starting afresh with a new perspective can be a great advantage from a creative angle, but it can also mean a lot of wasted time and effort, especially if you aren’t using the right software. So we’ve collected our top tips into a handy beginner’s guide to creating a successful presentation.
Collect the information you need to get across
Think about the purpose of your presentation – student learning, sales pitch, interview? why is your audience sitting down to listen to what you have to say? Collate the information you have and cut it down to the specifics and maybe even into sections at this point. You will bore your audience if you are speaking for an age on a topic that’s not relevant to them, or that they don’t need to know about, so try to be as concise and relevant as possible.
Think about your time frame
How long do you have for your presentation? Were you given a set speaking slot or do you have the power to choose how long your presentation will run for? Also, think about any videos or audio you want or need to insert and how long they will run for. No one wants to stare at a slide full of minute text so if you are pushed for time and you have too much information think about where you can cut down or on the other hand if you have as much time as you please, think about how long you will be able to captivate your audience for – just because you can have them sitting and listening for 90 minutes doesn’t always mean you should.
Choosing the right software could make or break your presentation and also make it an enjoyable creative process or a frustrating waste of your time. Luckily we’ve already written some useful articles on our top 5 presentations tools and why we think you need a new approach to presentations if you have never strayed far from the traditional PowerPoint Presentation. If you are new to creating presentations or new to creating successful and engaging presentations then ease of use is obviously a top priority – as well as a professional finish and its creative possibility. Presbee offers both of these things – it is incredibly easy to use and the software interface will be recognisable to most users, and it also has the power to create aesthetically impressive and beautiful presentations.
Run with what you know
Think about the last successful presentation you viewed – what was it about that presentation design and the speaker’s pitch that made you class it as successful? Take inspiration from this presentation and draw out the successful aspects and try to insert them into your own. How did the speaker behave in front of you? Was the presentation design colourful or minimalist? Did they rely on video and audio or was there a lot of text on each slide? Obviously, every presentation is different and you can be as creative as you like with yours, but to begin with really think about what, to you, makes a successful presentation.
Where’s the story?
One of the key cornerstones for any kind of presentation is the story you are telling your audience. A story will engage your audience and compel them to listen and empathise with your points and maybe even grow emotionally attached. Draw from your own life and experiences, big or small, and weave it into your presentation, starting with an opening where you present a problem or a stalemate and then present the solution or change and then conclude. The conclusion is where you really want to cement in your audience’s mind your message and that key bit of information.
With these things in mind, you should be able to create a successful presentation that engages your audience and is aesthetically impressive and beautiful. If you are nervous about public speaking then why not check out our presentation tips for nervous public speakers.
Do you have any more tips for those putting together their first presentation? Have you used a story to captivate your audience in a presentation pitch before?