Monday, July 17, 2006

Where does your audience focus on your PowerPoint slide?

If you have a dark background for your PowerPoint slides, where does the audience focus? I suggest that they will focus on the brightest spot on the screen if there is one. This is why using a background graphic that contains a bright spot, like a star or sun spot on a black or dark blue background, can be distracting to your audience. I saw a recent set of slides where the template used was a blue graphic background of the globe and a green graphic background for the title. The problem was that in the middle of the green title graphic background was a bright single spot of white with star burst lines coming from it. On every slide, your eyes were drawn to this spot, regardless of what else was on the slide because it was by far the brightest element on the slide. Be careful when selecting graphic backgrounds. There can be small elements that will end up drawing attention away from everything else on the slide and your audience will not focus on your message or graphic support as much as they should. I see so many backgrounds that are poorly designed from the audience impact perspective - they may be nice from a design perspective, but if they distract the audience they they aren't effective in my opinion. So I am doing a one hour web tutorial titled Customize the Look of Your Slides, which will show you how to create your own PowerPoint template that is pleasing to your audience. You can get more information at .


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